I never considered myself a person conflicted with anxiety, but as of late, I have a whole new view on it. Thankfully, I’ve always been a pillar for a couple of close friends who do suffer from anxiety, so I have done what I’ve always told them to do, but man it’s tough sometimes.
I don’t understand the world right now. Period. Yes I’m white. Yes, in a sense, I’m privileged. I grew up as poor white trash, in an abusive home, with divorced parents who made drugs and alcohol more important than their responsibilities. But at least I never had to worry about being looked at differently because of my skin tone.
My parents were racist. I could never bring my black friends home. They weren’t welcome. My father at least started shutting his mouth about his hatred after a black man saved his ass in a bar fight, but his grandfather’s KKK application still remains framed on his wall. Well into my adulthood, I remember my mother talking about how she’d never seen a black person before until her teens, bragging about pushing them into the lake where she grew up. I don’t understand it.
What difference does someone’s skin tone make? Why does it matter? Despite being raised by shitty closed minded people, I made the choice to break the cycle and to be a decent, kind, and loving person. I don’t understand why it’s so hard to judge people based on the content of their hearts and not the color of their skin.
Practically from birth, Americans are taught patriotism. Serve your country. Be all that you can be. Support your troops. Support the constitution. Know and support your rights. Dispose of a flag that’s fallen to the ground. Flags. Flags. More flags. Lady Liberty.
Not like the brazen giant of Greek fame,
With conquering limbs astride from land to land;
Here at our sea-washed, sunset gates shall stand
A mighty woman with a torch, whose flame
Is the imprisoned lightning, and her name
Mother of Exiles. From her beacon-hand
Glows world-wide welcome; her mild eyes command
The air-bridged harbor that twin cities frame.
“Keep, ancient lands, your storied pomp!” cries sheThe New Colossus
With silent lips. “Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me,
I lift my lamp beside the golden door!”
What a lie. All of it.
I find myself trying to mask my accent that makes it painfully obvious that I’m not from Canada. Because I’m embarrassed by what’s been happening in the US. Not just the past few weeks, but all year.
I can’t breathe because a fellow EMT gets murdered in her own home because of shitty policy and bad police work. I can’t breathe because I can’t fathom how a man gets murdered in broad daylight by the people who are supposed to serve and protect, and his voice pleading for life haunts my mind. I can’t breathe because these two instances aren’t the only issues that have occurred. I can’t breathe because I can’t fathom the military being used against its own citizens. I can’t breathe because there’s no constructive leadership from the person who is supposed to unite America.
I can’t breathe because I feel like there’s nothing I can do to make an actual difference. I can’t breathe because so many people are divided. I can’t breathe because my heart aches for all those who are suffering due to indecencies that I can’t even begin to fathom.
Please stop. Just love each other. And if you can’t love each other, can you at least just please tolerate people that are different than you? I can’t take the hate anymore.
Go out, support however you can. Protest safely. Donate if you can. Sign every petition you can find. Don’t be an asshole.