The Real Pandemic: Being Black in America

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Tired, angry, and hurt are all words to describe the current state of the American people after an emotionally exhausting week. By now, anyone with access to the internet has witnessed the heart-wrenching footage of yet another unarmed black person senselessly murdered by the very people sent to “protect and serve” our communities.

And while the rest of the world slowly attempts to return to some sort of pre-pandemic normalcy; the racial pandemic that’s been devastating the black community for centuries shows no sign of subsiding any time soon.

Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor, and most recently, George Floyd, are amongst the growing list of African-Americans whose lives were recently cut short, sparking social media and public outrage. George Floyd passed away on May 25th after being unlawfully detained by officers in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

These type of racial injustices have become such a commonality that celebrities and citizens alike have now made a call to action demanding change and justice for all of the innocent lives taken prematurely. Artists, politicians, and social media influencers are using their platforms to speak out and provide comfort as the nation continues to grieve collectively.

Swizz Beatz and Timbaland will host their first Gospel Verzuz Battle this Sunday at 8pm featuring Kirk Franklin and Fred Hammond. The battle will also be led in prayer by Bishop T.D. Jakes in an effort to provide some spiritual guidance to those in need. R&B duo Chloe and Halle also performed a soothing rendition of “We Shall Overcome” and “Lift Every Voice and Sing” for their IG followers. While Keke Palmer took to her Instagram to speak about the affects that institutionalized racism has had on the black community thus far.

Legendary hip-hop icon, Ice Cube, even cancelled his appearance on Good Morning America following George Floyd’s murder.

Several other celebrities and public figures have spoken out as well including Chance the Rapper, Meek Mill, and Trey Songz.

Beyonce’ also broke her silence after several days with a video urging people to sign a petition to demand more charges for the involved officers:

https://twitter.com/BET/status/1266569816372109319?s=20

So what can we do to actually evoke change? How do we protect ourselves and our families? What happens when peaceful protests just aren’t enough? How do we move forward in a system designed to hold us back?

These are the questions that need to be answered in order to save ourselves, our communities, and the future of our people. Systematic oppression has plagued our culture for hundreds of years and it’s time to take a stand once and for all.

For now, the city of Minneapolis has been up in flames over the past few days as protestors clash with law enforcement daily. More protests have begun to erupt all across the nation in support of the fight against police brutality.

Take a look below to see images from protests in Minneapolis and other cities across the country:

#WECANTBREATHE

Images via Twitter