People are dying: children, parents, lovers. Lost. Why does blame come before grief?
When the collective reaction to people dying is to justify why they deserved to die, our collective humanity is in shambles. Our inability to connect with our sadness, or even our rage over lives being lost should be a flaming red flag. These people had families, they had dreams, they were loved.
From top to bottom: Sandra Bland, Philando Castile and his mother, Valerie, Keith Lamont Scott and his family.
Emotional constipation, the blame game, avoidance… whatever you call it, it’s not healthy. It’s signaling a huge disconnect–not only between each other, but from ourselves.
The ability to sit with grief is a direct indicator of emotional health that we need to pay attention to.
If we can’t sit with our grief when life is lost, we’ll never be able to prevent another life from being lost. We’ll never be able to deal. We’ll never get fed up enough to realize there are some things we should’t have to deal with. Touching our soft spot and the sadness and tiredness that rests there holds our salvation. If nothing else, it offers us an opportunity to remember that we feel, which in turn is an opportunity to slow down. We need to slow down.
Our lives depend on it.
Once the black lives have been run through, there will be no veil left to shield our eyes from the inhumanity and duplicity being perpetrated upon us by the institutions that shape our world. By then, “all lives” will be on the table.
We can stop that from happening.
If we can stop our habitual reactions of blaming long enough to connect with our grief and link it to action aimed at preventing that suffering for other people who aren’t necessarily us, making black lives matter could literally change the world.