Throughout history, there are pivotal moments that trigger an uprising. The tipping point when people can no longer take the injustices anymore.
From the early revolts of enslaved people to the Abolitionist movement, Reconstruction, Civil Rights Movement to today’s Black Live Matter Movement. Black America has been fighting for justice and equality since the beginning.
This year, the murder of George Floyd has awakened America from the dream Martin Luther King Jr. described in his I Have a Dream speech. The part taught in grade school, the part that the media reruns ad nauseum on MLK day. The “I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.” MLK had a dream but he was wide awake to the reality.
America glossed over the beginning of that speech to focus on the Kumbaya, pushing forward the agenda that the nation had reached this point; the civil rights act was passed, Black people can live and work wherever they choose, America elected a Black President. They ignored the bounced checks of “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.” There’s no Kumbaya without cashing the “check that will give us upon demand the riches of freedom and security of justice.”
The debt is long overdue. The happenings of 2020 has further exposed police brutality, voter suppression, inequality in public schools, wage gap, and health care inequality. Once again, Black America has taken to the streets to cash the check that keeps coming back marked “insufficient funds.” We, the Black community, will not be content with changes designed to pacify (oh look, we got rid of Aunt Jemima and Uncle Ben).
As King once said of 1963, 2020 is not an end, but a beginning. We are not here to “blow off steam.”
“There will be neither rest nor tranquility in America until the Negro is granted his citizenship rights. The whirlwinds of revolt will continue to shake the foundations of our nation until the bright day of justice emerges.”