Thursday, August 14, 2014


Here we are again. One year and one month after Zimmerman got away with murder, literally. More than two years since 17 year old Trayvon Martin was murdered for being Black. An armed man was "afraid" of him, so he stalked him and shot him. And got away with it.

And here we are again. 18 year old Michael Brown, an unarmed Black teen, was shot and killed by police in Ferguson, Missouri, on August 9th. He was shot "more than once," and some reports state his body was riddled with bullets and left in the street.

And I sometimes shake with fear that my Black son will be shot because someone was afraid of him. That's a fear I share with millions of mothers of Black sons across this nation.

And I don't blame the protesters following Michael Brown's death. I pray they will end the violence, but I share their anger at this recurring truth: Our kids are being killed, and the murderers are getting away with it.

And, somehow, for me, this pain over our dying children is connected to the humanitarian crisis in the southern part of our nation, where tens of thousands of  "illegal immigrant" children are pouring over the border. If this were taking place anywhere else in the world, these would be "refugee children." Wouldn't they? We would look at these pictures and pity the children, point a wagging finger at the country which wouldn't admit them and care for them, and call it what it is: a humanitarian crisis.
So, why do repeatedly find ourselves watching our society excuse the racism, the hatred, the classism, the demonization, the marginalization, the pretense of "all is well" that leads to murder, deportation of juveniles in need, and a lack of punishment for those who perpetrate such ills????

 Look at the anger on the faces of these protesters... 
Look at the violence of these law officials...
Why such fear??? Because that is what these pictures show: Fear on the part of those protesting "illegal immigrants." Fear on the part of the law officials and their civilian bosses. 

Fear of those immigrant children??

Fear of those unarmed Black teens??


And as I have written before, and will probably write again, the antidote to fear of groups of people is to know them. We fear what we do not know. Take a moment to think of your own connections. If you spend most of your time with people who look like you, who live like you, who think like you... well, to be blunt, you are probably part of the problem.

It is not comfortable, easy, or fun to get to know people from different races, economic classes, cultures, or places, but it is essential. You will not agree with them about everything; but if you agree with every person you talk to, listen to on TV or the internet, or read, you aren't truly thinking anyway.

If George Zimmerman had known Black teenage boys, he likely wouldn't have assumed Trayvon Martin was hostile. If the police in Ferguson, MO were in relationship with Black teens, they likely wouldn't have shot Michael Brown to death. If those protesting the immigrant children in the picture above had talked with those kids about their lives in their former homes, they would likely be more supportive of their need to start a new life.

And, since this blog is supposed to be about glass and faith...

Did Jesus hang out with people of his own race, class, culture, or place?? Did He turn away those who were different from him? Did He assume the worst about strangers? Did He tell us to hoard the gifts of this world?

We know the answers.
It's time to step out and try to know one another, so we aren't afraid of them. So there ARE no "them."

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