It’s Time To Be Woke

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After spending 4 years at an HBCU I have been awakened to social injustice and racial problems in our country. I have been specially made aware of the rise in police brutality against African Americans, the rise in the killings or discrimination against African Americans and laws that have been passed that adds to the racial division. So this past Thursday,  after I have graduated from an HBCU and have moved back home, I came to support my brother at his last Academy spring concert. However, when I got there and saw the theme I started to get upset. The theme for the concert was “let freedom ring”. These innocent children sang songs about how we all are free and how this land is everyone’s.  The children also read parts of the declaration of independence and the bill of rights where it talks about freedom speech and how all men are created equal. I am not saying any of this was wrong but when I read the news or watch it I don’t see freedom ringing. Instead, I see a lack of freedom in America. As a African American woman I am scared when I see a police officer. Why? Because I could be the next female victim to police brutality.  I am scared when my brother walk’s out the door not knowing whether or not he will return.  I think about the thousands of people who try to come to America to be safe from the wars and bombings in their home country’s only to be ridiculed and mistreated when or if they get into the US. I am saddened when I hear stories of the hundreds of thousands of illegal immigrants who came here to America to have a better life and are deported just because they are not citizens. I cry for the young black male who can spend majority of his life behind bars for having marijuana and the many other things that keeps freedom from ringing in the United States.
Through my college experience I became aware or woke (as I like to call it) to events and issues that keeps freedom from ringing. It makes me upset that as I sit here that I am probably the only one woke to everything that is happening. How do I allow the people around me to stay sleep when they need to wake up and see the social injustice and stand up and fight for equality for all minorities. It is 2017 yet the news looks like it comes of the 1950s. Why is it that I am still judge by the color of my skin instead of my portfolio? Why will a police officer pull a gun on a black man quicker than on a white man? Why is the justice system pushing tougher punishments on black males than white who commit the same crime? Why can’t America have programs for illegal immigrants where they can become citizens and stay in America instead of trying to keep them out with a wall??? Y’all I’m so woke and ready to work because I want Let Freedom Ring to be an actual thing for America.
Until Next time,
Elyse
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