Dixie Darr

Black in America

In Uncategorized on July 5, 2017 at 10:14 am

Written and posted yesterday by my dear friend, Rev. Sheila Baker-Johnson
On this day set aside for celebrating our country’s freedom, this sixty-six year old black woman, raised in conservative, red, white, and blue Texas, BBQ-eating, Girl’s State, all-city government, National Council of Christians and Jews (at the age of sixteen) could not find breath enough or peace enough in my soul or heart to be proud of what we call freedom in this country.
This past Friday night, I went to the 8:30 showing of Wonder Woman alone. As I was leaving the parking lot, a large, black Tundra truck was slowly crossing in front of me as I waited to make a left turn. It stopped. A small light began to flash on and off in my eyes.
I realized the truck was not moving forward, and I was blocked. In those few moments, I wondered if I remembered to tell my adult children that I loved them the last time I saw them. I wondered who would be the first to see my blood in the front seat of my car. Will they remember to sing Amazing Grace (which is my shero hymn) at my home going? Did I do my best in life and had I forgiven all that I needed to forgive? All of the spirits of my brothers and sisters killed unmercifully, unrighteously, and too soon were entwined in my spirit that night in the parking lot.
The light continued to move up and down and after several breaths of prayer, I lowered my window about a third of the way. It was a white police officer, non-threatening, smiling, and gently saying, “Ma’am your lights are off.” I said, “Thank you, officer, I did not realize that.”
As I turned my headlights on, I’m sure he saw the fright on my face. “Have yourself a good evening, HUN.” And he drove away.
You may say I’m over-sensitive–I should not have been out after dark alone. I should not be Driving While Black. I can fix those things, but I cannot fix being black in a racist society. I tried to cry it out, pray it out, dance it out, meditate it out. But that small, innocent, gentle INCIDENT could have ended differently.

Please do not comment on this post if you have never spoken out verbally, voted, or penned resistance against racism, excessive use of force, #45, or called your senators or congressmen about the state of their jurisdiction. I’ve done all of it, and I’m still black. And I’m still very, very sad.

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