Why The World Can’t Breathe

Photo Credit: CNN

The world can’t breathe.

First there was the murder of Michael Brown, then came the murder of Eric Garner. In the heated space between those two murders, both committed by police officers who were later given a free pass by a grand jury, there were other similar murders, beatings, etc., that were once again recorded by We The People and then circulated for the rest of the world to see.

And now the rest of the world can’t breathe.

Because what began as a local injustice, not that much different from so many hundreds of other local injustices experienced by so many hundreds of young black men and women day in and day out and day in and day out since however long ago any of us choose to remember when we’d rather forget, has now become an international open wound. This is how we now look to the rest of the world. Pictures of protesters in France, in Japan, India, and in so many other places around the country and around the world holding up signs voicing their outrage at what has happened here in America’s streets.

Because this is what America looks like right now. And I’m sure the apologists for the police officers who murdered these two men will scoff at the fact that they couldn’t possibly know what really happened from so far away and surely they are being suckered by the evil left and the irresponsible minorities who have simply perverted then truth of the Great American Way to make it look like we don’t all get along just peachy.

Except the rest of the world isn’t stupid. And the rest of the world has a memory. They know our history, probably better than many of us do. And they know the difference between right and wrong just like we do, even if we don’t always act like it. Because right and wrong isn’t nearly so complicated as some might like to make it out to be. And when you choke a man to death in broad daylight on camera using an illegal chokehold while the man is telling you he can’t breathe, most sane individuals have the ability to recognize this as what’s wrong. When a young man is shot multiple times from over 100 feet away, and then his body is left in the middle of the street for several hours, most sane individuals recognize this as wrong. Hell, even George W. Bush can’t quite figure it out.

And this time people are just damned tired of so much that is so blatantly wrong being ignored and even justified. This kind of wrong makes you sick. It makes you not care that you’re a professional athlete who is supposed to just shut up and play the game, because you remember those neighborhoods that you barely escaped with your own life not all that long ago. You remember when Michael Brown was almost you. And you remember what happened to that friend of yours that one night. Or day. And now you can’t breathe.

Because none of us can.


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