teresa sabatine

ts coaching & consulting

Why do we care less about Black lives

The Stress of a Nation-3.png

I sit on a Friday morning observing the world around me.  In this particular instance it is the social media world, a not so safe space with its pulse on the hearts of our people. 

A woman from Hawaii posts a surfing video. 

A beauty influencer shares her morning routine.

A man promotes his protein shake. 

A black woman appears. 

She sits with her eyes to the camera. She breathes heavily. 

I can see in her eyes she is tired. I can see she is trying to protect herself in this not so safe space.

She pulls from somewhere deep insider of her, she musters some energy and she begins to teach.

Week after week.

Shooting after shooting.

Death after death, this woman appears in this not so safe space, to teach us.

To teach us. 

And we listen, and sometimes we learn, and often we do not learn. 

And we hashtag.

And we donate. 

And we march (and we don’t).

And yet, another black child dies. 

And we thank her, for her teachings. We applaud her vulnerability. 

We take what she can give and we pat ourselves on the back. 

Look at me, I listened to a black woman today. She taught me something.

Look at me. 

She does not teach for us.

She teaches to save her son. 

Her nephew.

Her brother. 

Her neighbor. 

She is teaching to save a life. To maybe even save her own. 

Why don’t we see her? 

Why don’t we see her son? 

We know why. We do. We can trace the why back generations. We know why we are here. We know how we are here. We know.

But knowing doesn’t seem to be enough.

I speak to black women and they tell me, “I just want people to see themselves in these stories I share. Maybe if they see themselves they will understand what we are going through, they will understand why it has to change, because it could be them.”

But it won’t be us. It isn’t us. So why do you care less about Black lives? 

A shooting occurs in Indianapolis, near the airport where my sister and niece are set to board a plane. 

My mind races, “Did they make it in safely?” 

A text goes out, “Did you make your flight?”

Does this make me change my mind about gun laws? 

Does imaging my sister in harm’s way make me use my voice for change?

Why does he have to be 13 with his arms up for us to care about him?

Why does an arrest warrant make him less worthy of life? 

Because somewhere along the way we decided that. We decided. 

We decided. 

We decide.

Why did you decide to care less about Black lives? 

How does it serve us to care less? 
What are you gaining?
What are you avoiding? 

And what does it cost you? To be hardened? 

To numb?

What part of your humanity are you so afraid of?

What part of your emotions are so overwhelming for you that you choose to run from them at the cost of Black lives? 

What does it cost you to pretend? 

Not your life. 

Perhaps that’s why it seems we don’t care as much.

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