It’s Friday, friends. This is the mixtape. And this week was definitely a mix of highs and lows.
There were good things like celebrating the second anniversary of our church community, finishing The Get Down, seafood tacos at Lulu’s Taqueria, nights at home without any commitments, and visiting Jordan’s grandmother where Jameson called her “GG!” (And yes, I’m still waiting on him to call me anything that sounds remotely close to “Mommy.” #salty)
On the other side of the spectrum, we learned about the killings of two black men at the hands of police — one we most certainly know was unarmed, with his hands up. And I wish that before people jumped into their arguments about right and wrong, that this loss of life was something we could all just collectively grieve.For all of the writing I do, whether here or elsewhere professionally, these killings and the complex issues related to them, make my typing fingers choke. I start and then delete. I begin again, but the words still never seem to be enough.
And perhaps one of the reasons why I don’t say much is because I know the strong bias each person brings, and I don’t have the energy or foresight to do all of the qualifying of my words.So instead, I do a lot of observing and reading articles and social media posts. Liking things here and there. Feeling infuriated at times. Feeling grateful for moments of shared understanding. Shedding tears over deep-seated brokenness.
And thinking. Thinking about the proper way to protest. The palatable smoothing over of MLK’s law-breaking legacy. Terms like “colorblind” and “post-racial.” The offense created by the word “privilege.” My own privilege. Jesus turning over tables. Lessons for Jameson. Our culture of shaming. A lack of civil debate. Sensationalized narratives. Progress. Scared police. Good police. Excessive force. Blind nationalism. Social media activism. The symptoms of trauma. The power of listening. Thinking about there being no easy answer. No cliché hopeful statement to pedal. Just the long, hard, uncomfortable work that all of us must do.
-From Harlem, with love.