Daughters, Mothers, Aunts, Sisters, Heroes

by Alexis Dean 16 days ago in activism

Breonna Taylor, Erica Garner, Atatiana Jefferson, and more...

Daughters, Mothers, Aunts, Sisters, Heroes
“I will not have my life narrowed down...” | bell hooks

I’ve closely watched the narratives for weeks now, and I’ve noticed the beauty in reimagining what a “hero” is on this virus-ridden planet. The selfless care of nurses, the unwavering strength of some protesters, and the thoughtfulness of teachers have all had an audience willing to thank them for what they are doing for others in need. By these unwritten rules, this should include three Black women who personified care, compassion, and strength before they were killed in a country that failed to fully exchange these same qualities to them. Breonna Taylor, Erica Garner, and Atatiana Jefferson. DISCLAIMER: I am not here to ask for chaos. But, I’m willing to respectfully check people who plead for fairness, while cashing out on forgetfulness when it involves Black people. Remove all racist stipulations and dive into your imagination with me, and imagine a nation, truly consistent in praising people who give their all to bettering our world.

Care. I envision care, when I say the name “Breonna Taylor.” A shining smile when a pandemic thought that it could dim it. A highly respected character, that carried her family’s name with pride. She was a 26 year old with two jobs at Louisville hospitals, resting in her bed to regain energy that would be willingly depleted for strangers. Possibly dreaming of the precious family she wanted to start, the gorgeous house she wanted to buy, and the big dreams she wanted to make reality. A hero wrongfully taken from us, by police officers shooting into a house that it was not supposed to enter...

Strength. I envision strength, when I say the name “Erica Garner.” A force with a heart that held onto all of our sorrows for us. A voice that spoke courageously for justice, for her father no longer breathing and for the thousands of people marching alongside her. She was a 27 year old freedom fighter, constantly revisiting the traumatic experience of police brutality to create everlasting change. A life suddenly dedicated to activism, and carried on with no sign of weakness. A hero whose enlarged heart could no longer hold onto so much pain and hurt...

Thoughtfulness. I envision thoughtfulness, when I say the name “Atatiana Jefferson.” A joyful soul, who knew the importance of children learning through play. She was a 28 year old scholar, using time to bond and harmlessly joke around with her 8 year old nephew. I imagine her on this night, grateful for the presence of family in her life. A hero that was murdered, after being shot through her home’s window by a police officer...

Say their names...

These Black women are heroes. So, don’t forget them. Don’t forget them when you say how much you value the nurses, the freedom of speech, the ones caring for the young. Give them praise. Give them your time. But, most importantly. If you try to justify the actions of officers not correctly doing their jobs, realize that your misguided research is moving towards a space of heartlessness. People killed by police were not just their occupations. They were not just what they were studying. They were not just their “records” or “their past.” They were more. Breonna, Erica, and Atatiana are not heroes only because of their tragic ending. And, they’re also not heroes only because of the villainous forces that were against them. They were heroes before they were victims because they were powerful daughters, mothers, aunts, sisters, and HUMANS who cared for others.

In order to understand the pain of losing Black women in this awful way, you have to have strength in your hearts. Strength to admit you’re wrong, and strength to back someone who may not look like you. You have to care about other individuals who you may have never met before. You have to be compassionate enough to learn, and teach. Learn that society has used social media, laws, books, and more to show us that we are not treated equal. Teach yourselves about the history of police brutality against people of color, and specifically Black women. This is necessary to see that Black lives matter...

Be caring, like Breonna Taylor

Be strong, like Erica Garner

Be compassionate, like Atatiana Jefferson

And never forget their names...

activism
Alexis Dean
Alexis Dean
Read next: The State
Alexis Dean

Alexis “L.E.X Dean is a clean Hip-Hop artist, poet, and educator from Milwaukee, WI. As a writer and music artist, he focuses on the importance of educating through his words and stories...

IG: @1LexDaTeacher

DreamsStartYoung.com

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