If you would have told me on December 31st, 2019, that the year 2020 was going to be sporadic and eventful, I would have honestly told you that you were lying.
On January 26th, 2020, the world lost American basketball player, Kobe Bryant, along with 8 other passengers that were on the helicopter. When this happened, I along with probably many others thought that 2020 could not get any worst. It was like when Kobe passed, the world could not take anything else and as soon as we thought that we could not take anything else, COVID-19 happened along with the killings of our brothers and sisters. What is currently going on in the world, is not necessarily horrible, but it is not splendid as well.
Systemic racism also known as institutional racism) is a form of racism expressed in the practice of social and political institutions. Racism is the belief that different races possess distinct characteristics, abilities, or qualities, especially so as to distinguish them as inferior or superior to one another. As an African American Woman, I have experienced both systemic racism and individual racism, but I can truly say that I have never experienced what our African American men have experienced. On May 25th, 2020, George Floyd, a forty-six-year-old African American man was killed in Minneapolis, Minnesota which sparked an uproar around the world. Before George Floyds’ death, on March 13th, 2020, Breonna Taylor, a twenty-six-year-old African American woman was fatally shot by Louisville Metro Police Department officers. The coincidence between both of these horrible deaths is that the world is fed up with police brutality and racism.
The 45th U.S. President, Donald Trump, is not very keen on what has been going on in the world today. When Donald Trump made his statement regarding memorializing George Floyd, he specifically stated that he did not understand why everyone was protesting. I would like to make this clear to everyone that is reading this article, every African American person is not dumb and every white person is not racist. For my African American brothers and sisters that are uneducated about their history and about what is going on in the world today, do your research and do not listen to everything that you are reading or hearing on the internet. For every White person that is not racist, please help out the African American community by using your voice to not only advocate for voting but to also use your voice to advocate for equal rights.
On November 3rd, 2020, everyone must flood the polls to vote so that we as a nation can make a change. Of course, there will always be people that may say, “ no matter what, history will always repeat itself.” I can agree and say that history will repeat itself, but what will we do differently that will prepare our future generations for the inevitable. For everyone that is saying, “All Lives Matter”, do me a huge favor and research African American men lynching percentage versus White men lynching percentage. Better yet, you can even research, “How many African American men/women have been killed by either police brutality or by racism?”. When you look at those numbers, the last thing that should leave your mouth is, “ All Lives Matter.” Yes, I do agree that All Lives Matter, but as of now, Black Lives Matter!!!
In the next decade, we will look back on everything that has occurred and see how these major events have shaped our society and the world we live in. The question I have for my readers is that “Will you use your voting rights to prepare for a new decade full of change?” Martin Luther King Jr. once said, “ 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.” As you prepare to ponder over your thoughts, do not stay silent over an issue that you are very passionate about. I know that I could not be on the frontline fighting with my amazing and superior brothers and sisters, but I have been using my voice in many other ways. Use your voice to the fullest and never let anyone tell you otherwise.
Written By: Nakiyah McCafferty
My name is Nakiyah McCafferty and I am from Birmingham, Alabama. I am currently a rising Junior at Alabama State University. I am majoring in Social Work where I aspire to become a Medical Social Worker.