No Poetry Tonight

I have been in tears since mid-afternoon. I live in Minneapolis. Last night, a young black man was shot dead during a routine traffic stop. I have no idea what the actual circumstances were that led to this tragedy. I only know the victim’s girlfriend streamed the entire incident and her video went viral. The night before another black man was shot point blank in the chest while being subdued in Baton Rouge, La. The country is experiencing a numbing response to the confusion behind these two killings. The primary focal point again, is that these were two black men.

Already the Governor of Minnesota (Dayton) has suggested that if the routine traffic stop involved white people in the car, this incident would probably not have occurred. These are comments coming from the Governor of the State of Minnesota. These are not comments from a bystander, they are a  reaction of a person of no matter your political leanings, someone of credible stature. Such bold statements are not made lightly, so this speaks to the horrific pattern of this controversial epidemic in our society.

My thinking tonight is not how this is going to stop or be resolved. My thinking is when will everything explode. Already four transit officers, as I write this have been shot during a Dallas protest – one has reportedly died. There are protests happening across the country, so in the manner of the human condition, if there’s a reaction from one-side, the other is going to retaliate. We are in for a very long night that screams the sick and dysfunctional nature of our society, our American society.

We are not getting along.

We need to acknowledge one another. Too late for kumbaya and more imperative we begin to work together to start the dialogue. Oh how many times, has that phrase been heard. We need to start the dialogue to heal our community. The dialogue begins tonight, not when a fact-finding committee is put together. The dialogue begins in our homes, in our restaurants, in our coffee houses, in our bedrooms, in our back yard bonfires. The dialogue just begins.

Let’s cut through the bullshit please. Open your eyes. We need to understand the tenets of peace – we have a long, long way to go. But, find your positive partner, find your optimist. Search in earnest for a proactive contributor to the dialogue. Start talking tonight.

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