Image for post
Image for post

It Sucks to be a Black Kid in America

When Tamir Rice was shot in the stomach while doing what boys do in a park — my instinct was to wish death upon the cop who killed him.

But not the kind that is fleeting and undramatic. A particularly gruesome ending to a life that took another life for reasons that still don’t add up — no matter how long and nimble you are with juggling the essence of formulas.

But then it occurred to me that the twelve-year-old black boy that the white coward with a gun and badge carelessly mistook for an adult — had endured the most painful and gut-wrenching end to his life.

Even in my most heated and vengeful state — I still can’t bring myself to wish that on my worst enemy.

We never think about the facts of the currently trending case.

The rampant culture of maintaining a high tempo as it pertains to posting and reposting gives us very little time to fully digest the glaring particulars of a story.

A dead baby was found floating in the waters of the Mediterranean. The photo of the rescuer holding the drowned baby was plastered on my Twitter timeline multiple times.

It didn’t garner nearly as many retweets as the pieces announcing the beauty ventures of the three top models in the universe.

This is because we are no longer able to process information accordingly. Even robots have been programmed to shed tears on cue.

We are no longer capable of such an act.

Yes, the tragic photo of a man holding a dead baby is graphic and sad but we don’t want to deal with all those emotions.

We need shitheads like Donald Trump, Ann Coulter and the complete travel itinerary of over-exposed celebrities to get our blood boiling with passion and set our fiery hearts alight.

When did America stop giving a fuck about the children?

Was it when it became apparent that not all kids are white?

There are plenty of black children running free who aren’t given permission by you to do so because you’re too bigoted and inhumanly deplorable to respect those basic rights.

Like the right to be a rambunctious four-year-old boy who doesn’t want to be told what to do — even when it could literally save his life.

I remember riding the New York City subway and noticing how passengers would smile with understanding and empathy whenever a white child was dissatisfied with his mother’s stern warning.

But that reaction was never afforded a black child. If he screamed with the efforts of a toddler in training — the expressions usually depicted disgust and agony.

Shut that black boy up! Damn black people! No wonder they’re fucked. They can’t even raise their kids right.

I felt that same sentiment being thrown over to the extremely lucky, pint-sized troublemaker who fell into a heap of chaos and mayhem that cost the life of a caged gorilla.

When I initially peeped the story of his predicament — I was beyond relived to behold that there was in fact — a very happy ending.

He was rescued and handed back to his weary and appreciative parents who never anticipated that a casual day at the zoo would end in their son almost being mauled by a giant gorilla.

It seems that my joy and gratitude about this little boy’s good fortune isn’t shared by many.

And that bothers me. No. It angers me. Actually it makes me feel like that moment when the Incredible Hulk is forced to make his dreaded appearance.

I get it. An animal was shot and killed in the line of duty. He had an unwanted visitor in his unnatural habitat and since he can’t speak — he demonstrated his welcome by dragging his guest around while trying to figure out what the hell to do with him.

I’m glad that he was killed.

That boy’s life is way, way, way more valuable than the life of a gorilla who didn’t really have much to be happy about anyway.

Do you really think for one moment that it is a fair bargain to have these animals snatched from their otherwise temperate territories — and tossed into staged camps that cramp their style — just to benefit your ability to show your kids the elementary vibes of the animal kingdom?

Give me a break!

You’re upset because a black boy lived to see another day and a gorilla that was confined to a life sentence was put to death early.

Very good.

The truth is — zoos in general aren’t really a groovy idea but we have them because we can.

Shit happens. And when faced with the decision to save a human life or an animal — the human will and should always win.

Even black kids get to survive their mistakes.

I know that’s hard to grasp because white mistakes are usually placed in a very different category. But this time — it had to go down exactly the way it did.

This was a victory. You don’t read stories where the black child actually gets treated like a child.

They are usually presented as being too tall, grossly menacing, and unusually large — which excuses the unreasonably dire treatment they receive.

And for the record — parents lose their children all the time. It’s no secret that boys have a tendency to beat the odds and end up in places that are unfathomable and almost impressive.

The parents of the rescued boy have received utter shit from the press and angry trolls.

God knows they must be traumatized — but that doesn’t apply to them because black people are incapable of such emotions.

The Daily Mail swiftly dug up and furnished the criminal past of the black burly father who undoubtedly fits the description of someone with a shady past.

And animal rights activists who are of course mostly white — want the parents to pay money they don’t have to justify their son’s life being saved.

America the ugly.

It’s amazing that we can tolerate the grossness of our existence without choking on the filth that permeates every facet of the recognition that we’ve become the worst kind of humans.

Regardless of what we agree on or the differences that separate us — one thing is for damn sure.

It truly sucks to be black in America. But it sucks even more to be a black kid in the country where dreams can no longer save us.

From our nightmares.

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store