Riots, looting, and a whole lot of confusion
"And I must say tonight that a riot is the language of the unheard. And what is it America has failed to hear?" - Martin Luther King Jr. Yesterday my family and I ventured out into surrounding neighborhoods on the south side of Chicago. We wanted to properly assess damage that has supposedly been done to our community by protesters and rioters. The news as well as social media was crawling in statements about how people were turning a movement into a chance to get some new shoes. To see what was what, we traveled about 15 minutes north and 15 minutes south of our house, keeping our eyes peeled for broken or boarded up windows. I was disappointed by what I saw, grocery stores, gas stations, and liquor stores smashed to pieces. Believe me, it hurts to see my community like this, but I can't help but think that there are more pressing issues right now. What is really disappointing is focus shifting away from the movement and towards the chaos being caused as a result. With any disease, there are symptoms. In any rebellion, revolution, or war there are casualties. This was and is inevitable, and it needs to happen. When peaceful protests fail to make a difference time after time, what else can be done? A building can only truly be rebuild after being knocked down. People aren't understanding something. Communities can be rebuilt, lives cannot. If I am learning anything through all of this, it is how quickly and effectively Black people and allies will come together to fund-raise for a good cause. It is important to note that those who would vandalize, loot, and in any way harm the Black community during a time like this are not with the movement. They are taking advantage of a chaotic time, and can you blame them? I am opening the comments on this post up to discussion, because I am sure many have an opinion on the matter. This is a safe space to share your thoughts, and hate has no place here. Speak freely, but do so with respect.