Recent Reflections

I’ve been taking a break from writing, not because I wanted to ignore this, but because I, much like others in this country, was spending a lot of time with my family. Coming back to Austin for a little while, I’ve come to surround myself around my support system, and lord knows I need them now more than ever. This year has definitely been one of the hardest years I have had to date, but when looking at my year, I know that I am very fortunate compared to others who have been immediately impacted by struggles. There are people who weren’t able to turn to their support team, people who won’t ever see their support team again, and it isn’t their fault.

My continuing journey to understand blackness has been very big this year, and I have come to a point where I feel like I will never finish this journey no matter how hard I try. I have also come to the point where I have accepted this, because I know that I am only human and am limited in that nature. But this year has also been about challenging thoughts I have had about myself and others as well as expanding myself past the narrowness of my mind. I have had many times where I have had to call out or in for someone, but there have been way more times this year where I have been the one who needed calling out or in. And I refuse to sugar coat it because I am a human, and am far from perfect, and I refuse to present myself as perfect. This year has given me life, but has also given me death and mourning, and this is what I need to get off my chest today.

When people look at me now compared to the beginning of the year, they would say that I’m stronger, wiser, more resilient, etc. And I’ll admit, I have definitely grown a lot in this short span of twelve months. I’ve worked to become a better student, worker, friend, sister, and daughter. My efforts have been noticed, and that’s certainly satisfying, but as I’ve reached the end of the year I find myself asking how I can do more. And I also find myself thinking a lot about time; how much has gone by, how quickly it’s going by, having it and wondering when I won’t anymore.

This year, I had a birthday, got older. I am one of the lucky ones. People like me don’t get these luxuries of aging and going to college and having your family available. I get to eat food, drink, laugh, and have fun, but there are so many others who don’t get to. Because their lives were destroyed by a system that our country and many of its citizens rely on so heavily: the police system.

For people of color, and especially black people, there has always been antagonization of overall blackness, and in addition, the criminalization of blackness. Black people, from the time they first reached this country, have been antagonized due to white supremacy amongst other things. With the ending of slavery came the opening of prisons and the beginning of mass incarceration of black people.

The police have been conditioned to believe that people of color are easy targets and are the primary victims of abuse and brutality by the police and those in the majority, white people, are conditioned to not only be okay with this but to continue to justify it. I tend to not fear the outright and blatant people, as least not as much, because at least I know where we stand. I tend to fear those who claim vehemently that these people deserved to die because cops are always right.

There’s probably going to be a part two to this, but I really need to focus on self-care right now.

-JW

Why People of Color Dislike Police

I’ve been taking a break from writing, not because I wanted to ignore this, but because I, much like others in this country, was spending a lot of time with my family. Coming back to Austin for a little while, I’ve come to surround myself around my support system, and lord knows I need them now more than ever. This year has definitely been one of the hardest years I have had to date, but when looking at my year, I know that I am very fortunate compared to others who have been immediately impacted by struggles. There are people who weren’t able to turn to their support team, people who won’t ever see their support team again, and it isn’t their fault.

My continuing journey to understand blackness has been very big this year, and I have come to a point where I feel like I will never finish this journey no matter how hard I try. I have also come to the point where I have accepted this, because I know that I am only human and am limited in that nature. But this year has also been about challenging thoughts I have had about myself and others as well as expanding myself past the narrowness of my mind. I have had many times where I have had to call out or in for someone, but there have been way more times this year where I have been the one who needed calling out or in. And I refuse to sugar coat it because I am a human, and am far from perfect, and I refuse to present myself as perfect. This year has given me life, but has also given me death and mourning, and this is what I need to get off my chest today.

When people look at me now compared to the beginning of the year, they would say that I’m stronger, wiser, more resilient, etc. And I’ll admit, I have definitely grown a lot in this short span of twelve months. I’ve worked to become a better student, worker, friend, sister, and daughter. My efforts have been noticed, and that’s certainly satisfying, but as I’ve reached the end of the year I find myself asking how I can do more. And I also find myself thinking a lot about time; how much has gone by, how quickly it’s going by, having it and wondering when I won’t anymore.

This year, I had a birthday, got older. I am one of the lucky ones. People like me don’t get these luxuries of aging and going to college and having your family available. I get to eat food, drink, laugh, and have fun, but there are so many others who don’t get to. Because their lives were destroyed by a system that our country and many of its citizens rely on so heavily: the police system.

For people of color, and especially black people, there has always been antagonization of overall blackness, and in addition, the criminalization of blackness. Black people, from the time they first reached this country, have been antagonized due to white supremacy amongst other things. With the ending of slavery came the opening of prisons and the beginning of mass incarceration of black people.

The police have been conditioned to believe that people of color are easy targets and are the primary victims of abuse and brutality by the police and those in the majority, white people, are conditioned to not only be okay with this but to continue to justify it. I tend to not fear the outright and blatant people, as least not as much, because at least I know where we stand. I tend to fear those who claim vehemently that these people deserved to die because cops are always right.

There’s probably going to be a part two to this, but I really need to focus on self-care right now.

-JWv

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