Love is hard.
Love is enduring. In this case, Love is enduring disappointment. Although, I am disappointed in the Ferguson police department and district attorney for many reasons, such as, but not limited to the District Attorney not indicting even though every legal analysis I saw speak on the matter said otherwise, “leaking” misinformation to poison the grand jury pool, and the incorrectly instructing the jury (for which I suspect Justice Department may bring charges), I am not surprised. Based on the initial response of the local authorities, I didn’t expect otherwise. No, I’m disappointed by the fact that once again at how the media once again seeks to inflame than report, and I’m disappointed at how once again, we eat it all up. Like Washington, media particularly visual media, is broken, in respect to the truth anyway. In a microwave society, attracting eyeballs is more important than the truth which is often buried in the details, and who has time for that? The death of journalism may be more of a threat to our republic than lobbyist, “terrorist” (domestic or international) or global warming, for is we do not know the truth, how can we effectively deal with any of these issues?
Love is Sacrifice. As always, little will change without action, without sacrifice. It starts with me challenging myself to take some specific action to address the devaluation of black lives and in doing so help to make this world a safer place for everyone, including young black men. I would hope that you would do the same. Even if your gifts aren’t in the area of social justice, every positive action moves us closer towards our goal of equal treatment, not just within the law (although, that would be welcome start). It can be something unique, but basics such as becoming involved in mentoring (black boys and girls often don’t have the privilege of second chances) or after-school programs are always good. Know your gifts and bring them to the table.
Love is restraint. Regarding the vandals who chose to vandalize stores and cars within the Ferguson community; a number of those stores were black owned (not that it matters in this case), but at the very least all were places of employment for a community in need of jobs. I confess that while I understand the frustration, the hurt and the pain, I don’t get destroying one’s own community. Now, if the vandals had burned down the courthouse, that I would have understood. I’m not recommending that either, but at least that I would understand. Unlike some people in this community, whom I respect very much, I will not give those few protesters who willingly destroyed property in their own community a pass just because they were, and rightly so, upset. I no more give them a pass than I give Officer Darren Wilson a pass, because he was “afraid” of an unarmed black boy. We are on a slippery slope in this country in this regard, allowing citizens to harm other citizens, just because they were upset or scared (i.e. stand your ground laws, sentencing laws for non-violent crimes). There is little room for emotion in the world of equal justice to which we all strive. “In your anger, do not sin”, the Bible and other good books say. So, yes, be angry, but in your anger do not become the very thing you despise.
Love is understanding. During conflicts like this one, there is a misconception of hatred. Both sides believe the other side is filled with hate, when in truth, ironically, both sides think that they are acting in love. Appropriately then, we must demonstrate what love is, so that we all may reach a common understanding. Mahatma Gandhi and Dr. King knew that they had to display a greater love, one which would raise all men above what they formerly understood love to be.
Love is Risky…
Even though I know how this story ends, it’s hard right now. The waiting. I’ve grown weary of waiting on Love. Oh how I’ve chased this Love. I’ve longed for…