I was at the Dollar Tree earlier, and a lady in front of me was sharing a story with the cashier about how terrified she was one time that she was going to get arrested for accidentally pocketing something she didn’t pay for.
I wanted to say, “Imagine if you were a black man…”
But I didn’t. I was feeling some type of way though. She was entitled to feel the way she did, but it certainly could have been worse.
I have five brothers among other family and friends that I continue to cover in prayer. Because fighting hate with hate doesn’t work. But I can’t help but wonder if one day, I’ll get a call that they had an encounter with law enforcement that went all the way wrong.
I have never been a big fan of race. Never cared.
Even through what I learned about my history.
I have always just wanted to love and be good to people, no matter where you were from.
Color or background didn’t matter.
Even the time I was walking home from school at the old Marietta High and a car full of white guys passed me and one yelled, “Nigger!!”
Yep. That happened in 2001. That car could have hit a tree and I still would have taken my little Nokia and called 911. Because I care about PEOPLE.
Color doesn’t matter.
Joyce Bettis Roberts, Nena Hollifield, Bonita Labby, Leah Scott-Mullins are all white people I couldn’t imagine not knowing. A few of the many white people that I am connected to that have loved me and never even attempted to make race a factor in our being connected. All because we love the Lord and were saved by the same blood.
Color doesn’t matter.
Then I think of a family member who once told me to never trust white people because they are snakes. Meanwhile my childhood best friend (and first best friend at that) Ashliegh Tabor taught me what trust is in friendships. So has Leah Scott Mullins. Two white women who have trekked life with me at different points. Two women who have shared some of the same struggles, and strengths too, whom I can truly say have had my back.
Color never mattered.
But then I think back on a time I called the police because I was in a serious situation, threatened by a black man.
Color didn’t matter.
I called for help. This man had a complete meltdown, because he was sure he was going to lose his life, his identity, because in a split second he lost self control and now had to face the reality that his life could end at the hands of law enforcement if he made the wrong move.
It wasn’t until recent shootings of some innocent black men that I realized what went through his head that night I called the cops. And it hurt me to realize what was going on in his mind, even if in that moment I felt like my own life may be in danger. No, I didn’t want him to die. I just wanted to feel protected. And it was my life or his life at stake. That was quite a proposition!
That realization left me with the thought of, should I even call the authorities when I feel helpless in a situation like this?? Should I just fend for myself and deal with the aftermath, because I’m less likely to use deadly force on a whim?? I absolutely hope and pray there ISN’T a “next time”. But the irony of it all is mind blowing.
I know that not all police are bad. I will never believe all white people are racist or that innocent people, no matter their color, deserve for their dear blood to be shed at the hands of evil.
I chalk it up to this:
Color doesn’t matter. It’s the condition of the heart that causes people to commit these heinous acts.
I will continue to love, no matter who you are. I don’t care what “your people” did to “my people”. I’m grateful that God made me the way I am. I proud of who I am and what I was born as. I represent my family and myself accordingly. I am an upstanding citizen. But most importantly, I represent God.
Color doesn’t matter. Unless it’s red, and it’s blood. #Jesus