- Faith & Family
Since at least 1619, men, women and children of the African Diaspora, collectively referred to now as Blacks, have fought for equality, respect and justice. In a word, we have remained on the battlefield simply asking to be treated as human beings. We have witnessed significant change and improvement — yet we still find ourselves in the unenviable position of being the least respected and most discriminated of all races in the U.S. Maybe it’s time that we stop asking and begin to demand our fair share and an equal place at the table. The question is where do we begin?
One solution might be to enforce some laws and change others so that Blacks can live, work and play without the possibility of being singled out by store owners, police officers or zealous bigots because of the color of our skin or the clothes that we wear. It’s called racial profiling and in more cases than we may ever know, it can be life-altering if not life-ending. Trayvon Martin is one example but most Black men and boys can share their own tales of how they have been humiliated, harassed and even injured all because they were “walking while Black.”
Respected Black businessman and community leader Al Dotson Jr., who recently testified before the House Judiciary Committee, says profiling is nothing less than “indifference to the sanctity of life.” Blacks serve in the armed forces, we pay taxes, we teach children and protect citizens — we even lead this nation in the White House. We cannot allow ignorant men and women to succeed in turning back the clock to the “good old days” of Jim Crow.
As the poet Langston Hughes reminded us, while we may be the “darker brother,“ we, too are America.