No Empathy, No Patience, No Fucking More

No Empathy, No Patience, No Fucking More

This week has been difficult for many reasons. Police murdering black men in Minnesota and Louisiana and then the slaughter of police officers in Dallas.

I am sad and disgusted and angry about all of it. The story attached below ran on the front page of The Pantagraph (Bloomington/Normal, Illinois) on March 25, 1976. Robert Jackson was my grandfather. He was murdered by career criminals during an armed robbery. The trigger man is still in prison and will likely die there. His accomplice has been a free man for a long-time, ‘cuz The Drug War. Go Social Conservatives! Yeah!

The news in Dallas has brought this shit back up to the surface with the requisite racist reactions by so many white people who are lucky to not have to experienced anything so traumatic in their ownlives.

I have been married to a black woman for over 20 years now. I dated other black women before her. I am comfortable in and among black coworkers, friends and family. I have for my entire adult life. I have two biracial sons and I worry for their safety every day. The youngest at 19 struggles with being a young adult, college student and living with Asperger’s in a world that does not want to understand people who are wired differently. Add his racial heritage into the mix and it scares me to death to think about the day he leaves the house and goes out on his own permanently. I worry about the first white cop he encounters who lacks the experience, maturity and emotional intelligence to understand that my son’s direct manner of speaking is not a license to do anything he wants in response to a perceived disrespect to his supposed limitless authority. I worry. I don’t trust anymore. I don’t have that luxury.

I worry about my nephews and nieces and their beautiful children. I worry that more violence will one day affect them directly. I worry that so many white people, including some of my own family, are always looking for a reason to excuse police brutality when the victim is black. I worry that they will spend the rest of their lives in that racist bubble, not understanding how they are hurting my children by spreading every lie, half-truth and racist meme about dead black men that they come across on social media. I worry that it will only get worse.

Please, don’t assume that my disgust and sadness over police brutality and damned near zero accountability is based on hatred of law enforcement. I know what is it like from the perspective of a child to watch the adults around you struggling to understand something so horrific and evil while slowly falling apart themselves during investigations and court proceedings and sentencing. As a parent, I now understand what it means to feel unable and inadequate to really translate that sloppy mess into something logical when your kid is asking you to make the world make sense again.

It doesn’t and you can’t.

I promise, unless you’ve lived it, you don’t know a fucking thing about it. So keep your uninformed opinion about my alleged biases to yourself. Whenever I write about police brutality and race, there is no shortage of small-town white people from the Midwest running to tell me how wrong I am and how I need to shut up because I will need to call a cop to rescue me some day. Sorry, but I’m not likely to be kind in response any more. I may even make you cry and I am certainly not going to lose any sleep over it. There are more important things at stake than some emotionally stunted white person’s feelings about shit they’ve never experienced and will likely not in this lifetime.

Sincerely,

James Landrith

Founder and Publisher,

The Multiracial Activist

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