I was never asked for my opinion on what happened to Michael Brown. I was never asked to comment, to feel a certain way, to speak out in a way that was demanded of me for better or worse because of my race, socioeconomic status, or privilege. I was never asked for my opinion. But I get the feeling that neither were you.
This is my opinion, and while it may not be whatever the “truth” is, it was also not asked for. My opinion that I can post on social media, that I can share on Facebook, tweet, hashtag, Snapchat, and basically use under any premise I choose so long as it constitutes freedom of speech.
I will write this in five minutes or less. I feel like given the current exchange rate of opinions that seems about right. I will write this without googling anything. I will write this solely based on my opinion, because regardless of whatever the “truth” is, it was also not asked for.
When I first heard about this, my heart was with his parents. His poor family that has been made some sort of convenient media symbol by both sides, his parent’s that raised a boy until he was shot and made a symbol of the broken system we live under but yet maintain through ignorance. Did you vote? I’m not asking if it was easy to vote, but I am asking how hard you tried. Because I voted easily. I offered my 20 cent opinion without any hassle. Not the case for many citizens.
But let me just clarify something. Our political system is broken. No political system is perfect, perfection would be divine. If we choose not to care, this is the price. In blood. In blood you don’t see but see over the news. In blood you can’t quantify except through Facebook. In blood that is convenient, cheap, and common. There are people that will starve to death tonight. Funny, it’s almost Thanksgiving. There are people who will overdose tonight. Funny, I wonder who will feed their children.
It’s not fucking funny. It’s the world we live in, and it isn’t just our world, it’s the entire damn world. This is the opinion I wasn’t asked for. This is the opinion that no one cares to listen to, even if we riot, even if we shoot. Martin Luther King Jr. wasn’t just a revolutionary; he was a man of incredible faith that knew the system well enough to break it in a calculated way that would fix it for all people, based on knowing the true cost, which is casually measured in blood as I speak. He spoke out against injustice and then he planned a march to the sea ending in Montgomery, Alabama that changed the world forever. He came in peace. He was shot in peace. A lot like Michael Brown, from what many people believe. But also like the thousands of children of every skin pigment and nationality and ability and language that day every day in our world. A lot like the sister you won’t invite to Thanksgiving because of old wounds that you haven’t let heal. A lot like every other stupid person being punished for being alive, some of us more so than others. I am a Christian, like Dr. King. I believe in Jesus Christ, and I believe that rioting and shooting and a bunch of other lies are not like the character of Jesus. Jesus died because he spoke peace and flipped the wrong people’s gambling tables inside the wrong house of worship. He was the Messiah; that was part of his job description.
It’s been about 14 minutes, a little longer than I wasn’t asked for. But yeah, as much as my heart grieves over this regardless of my race (I’m white if you were wondering), I believe in the cross. And I am haunted by the pain of the entire earth when I think about Michael Brown’s mother weeping and his father being absolutely helpless to save his baby boy. There are no words. I hope that was the opinion you weren’t looking for.