Beliefnet
Beginner's Heart

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I use this image alot in my blog. I wish I knew who first created it — they deserve my undying admiration & gratitude. Because to me, this is beginner’s heart.

It’s what I think of these days, especially, as I try to make sense of my own anger, frustration, and even despair. Anger at the blindness of a white, heterosexist, ersatz Christian culture. Frustration w/ a system of police ‘protection’ migrated from a war on terror, as if wethepeople were the enemy. And despair that nothing has changed since the riots of the 60s…

Today, however, a dear friend and colleague — someone I have nothing but respect and affection for — reminded me that there is more to Ferguson than my raging against the night. There are people who live there, w/ children who can’t go to school.

Children who will need counseling to get this past week out of their nightmares. A QuikTrip that may not be rebuilt, in a neighbourhood with — almost certainly — too few sources for shopping.

And still, I don’t know what to think, or how to process. So I SWORE I wasn’t going to do FB today, or tomorrow. The tragic, racist, thoughtless and downright HATEFUL posts about Ferguson and the other murders of black men & women this past month have me too upset & angry.But to be honest, it’s not strictly Ferguson. It’s a society that believes the death of a black man is ‘collateral damage.’

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I understand that the officer in Ferguson may have been afraid. But face it: he did NOT know (at that time) of the robbery, if indeed there was one. So basically, he hassled a guy for living while black, and then freaked out because he bit off more than he could chew. In the BEST of scenarios, the officer is still grievously at fault: he hassled a guy for being black and jay-walking.

I’m just sick of it all. When I go out to eat w/ my (black) friends Ben or Dewayne, it’s SOOOO different than when I go out w/ my husband, or my brother-in-law. Race is such a painful, horrible legacy in this country, and I don’t know what to do except remind people, as often as it seems necessary, that we need to talk.

The response in Ferguson was waaaay out of proportion. And sure: parties on both sides are making political hay out of it. Witness the St. Louis PD, the KKK, the SLPC, etc. I tend to agree that it’s no different, essentially, from the 4-5 other murders of black men & a woman this past month. That doesn’t comfort me.

Somehow, we all have to find a way to heal these grievous wounds. And frankly? I can’t begin to heal myself, and no one has shot at me, profiled me, beat me up, or shot my son. So how on earth can Ferguson ever come to peace…?