💭 💭 💭 “I had a dream” … but now I need a plan! (SIC)
Following on from my assimilation piece, I thought I would add this addendum regarding the issues surrounding BLM.
So, the protests have been going on for awhile now. Sadly in our modern media hungry world, current news becomes old news fast. Hopefully momentum will not be lost! I’m not referring to the racism obviously, but rather the effect of racism, brought to life by the “knee in the throat of Mr Floyd” incident. It was both shocking, highly visible and I think that’s what sparked a gasp first, followed by the collective cry.
Given the events from that moment through to today, I ask this: What’s been achieved and more importantly what has still to be achieved. We’ve realised:
- BLM – check;
- Racism is real – check;
- Peaceful Protest and / or angry aggressive protest and / or rioting has gained not just America’s attention, but that of the whole world – check;
- Racism has been going on for too long with nothing constructive being done about it, to the point it’s become a collective culturally sanctioned process that must stop – check;
- Initially ‘whites’ made it clear they understood what the issues were, but those people have been shouted down (rightly) because unless you are black, you really cannot know!
- Police are out of control concerning the treatment of blacks – check.
We don’t necessarily have consensus on all of these issues, with much too’ing and fro’ing; blame game rhetoric; guilt; conspiracy theories and who did what to whom, but the points above are primarily the ones being spoken about. Note: this is not an exhaustive list but an attempt to bring this to some sort of conclusion.
You see, Mandela had a specific plan before he took action … he wanted the vote for every person 18 and over in South Africa, and he achieved his aim. That was relatively simple – because the objective was clear. However, what I’m witnessing in today’s process, seems far more complex! And due to “The Knee” incident, circumstances did not allow for a plan to formulate first! It just exploded into a call for action! Consequently, I’ve heard people mouthing off for weeks now – and I get that this is part of a process, but what’s next?
Disbelief and shock gave way to anger which gave way to venting. Some still need to vent and we have a counter response of recrimination and guilt, but after all that is said and done – surely we need to heal, move on, come together as a nation, … or what??? Just keep at each other’s throats. Surely that cannot be the goal.
What’s the plan? What is next?
Because if there is no plan, a cohesive from the bottom up, grass roots plan, much of this effort and support will be lost, it will dissipate. And without a plan the venting won’t stop, but neither will the racism. And that would be sad. Tragic actually! It would almost render the loss of life and damage to property etc., pointless. As it stands it’s neither pointless or in vain. The loss of life is never easy to justify – but somehow if it’s for a noble cause … a freedom; a better life for all, equality, it helps us accept the loss. Helps us deal with the misery. We have got to make the loss count this time!
Speaking personally, I hope newer younger leaders step up and assume a mantle of responsibility in creating order and effect out of this process. I hope it’s not the usual suspects – spouting “I have a dream” rhetoric and the Al Sharpton’s of America using their platforms to aggrandise themselves. Let’s properly move forward.
So far 2020 will go down as a momentous year because of Covid and the BLM uprising. My deepest hope though when we look back is that it’s not the riots or protests we remember but rather the solutions and positive outcomes. I hope we rejoice for the results achieved and not the moment of madness between “I can’t breath” and faceless people facing off against each other with total hate! Is it a time of riots or a moment of resolve!
For if it becomes only about the riots and protests, we are a weaker humanity. If the effect of venting is the only new statue sitting on our new pedestals, it’s not an achievement, it sets humanity back decades.
Community leaders need to take a step back and dialogue about solutions and systems. Let’s not leave it to politicians to use this moment in time and our collective cry as a political football … let’s not be any politicians personal “flock” … let’s be all the people, for all people! United for a common decency.
Rise up. “Cometh the hour, cometh the men (sic)”. Let’s show that life is precious, that life does matter and that the only legacy worth fighting for is a better tomorrow for all the worlds people and for our precious planet. Let’s at least make the senseless taking of lives worth something for generations to come.