Peace Be With You

A letter to Black Fathers and Their Son’s

Dear Antoine, Zion and Czarien,

After twenty-six days of protests, political posturing, and praying, I felt it necessary to be a beacon of light for you. You bear the mark of richly sun-kissed skin. And although I find it to be absolutely and unquestionably beautiful, I know others may not share my sentiments. That saddens me. I won’t pretend to know the fear that is present with you when you see the images of black men lying lifeless in the street. Seeing this happens far too often for there to be any justifiable reason. Nor will I assume to know the thoughts you might have when you’re determining your route to work or school, respectively. I will, however, tell you that your life and every ounce of air you all breathe, matters to me.

I write these words knowing that someone is prepared to challenge the value of your lives without ever having met you. People may even speculate how you were raised, your level of education, or your temperament based solely on the pigment with which you were blessed. It is unfortunate that they don’t see what I see. Regardless of any of that, my aspiration is that peace be with you, for you and upon you. I hope that it consumes you and exudes from you so much that it changes the hearts of others around you.

While I cannot carry the weight of your life’s journey, I can walk beside you if you allow. I can support your dreams, aspirations, and endeavors. I can give you opportunities as they are available to me. I can promote you, encourage you, and push you to greatness. I can listen to you and learn from you and with you. I can respect you, defend you, and honor you. I can value you. I can do these things while the rest of the world is learning to see you or hear you.

When you make mistakes, I can and will forgive you. I will not judge or condemn you to die. I can do these things because I love you and your lives matter. They always have mattered. They always will matter.


Wife and Mom to amazing individuals

Know Justice! Know Peace!

I am sure that you all have been following the coverage that has taken over our media coverage despite the pandemic that we are experiencing globally. It’s been a lot, to say the least. As a mother of two African American sons, I’ve had to manage fears and give explanations that we’re both candid and concerning. I was unable to process why unarmed black men are deemed to be a threat. It will never make sense to me, and since I have not found one logical explanation to support the notion, I had to rely on my internal barometer for resolve.

Know justice! Justice is the quality of being fair and reasonable. It is the application and administration of law. Justice is not, nor should it be, associated with race, color or sexual orientation, familial status, or socio-economic status, etc. Some would say that justice is blind, and although it should be, what we’ve seen lately is not what we know to be justice. Before we determine any measure of innocence or guilt, we should try to do so without consideration of any characteristics or classifications. Removing the race of any of the persons involved in any of the recent shooting scenarios, our perspective changes. This concept is the example used in the late 90’s movie, A Time to Kill.

Knowing justice is a way to check your moral aptitude.

Know Peace! Peace is defined as freedom from disturbance. It is a time in which there is no war. It is the presence of security and calmness. Like justice, peace does not consider characteristics or classification. It is safe to assert that one can only know peace after having faced and overcome a trial, storm, personal struggle, or war. Let’s admit that we’ve all have experienced something that has disturbed us. Whether it’s having to consume veggies as a child or having to go in on your day off, we know what it is like to have our peace disrupted.

All around the United States, people are protesting racial inequalities and disparities. They are disrupting the natural cadence of a false narrative. People have grown tired of the lie that “all men are created equal.” And so, their proclamation, NO Justice, NO Peace has caused a shift in the perspective of those who authored this false narrative. It’s shaken the comfort of those in power and awakened them from their illusion of peace.
I hope that the protests will be the vehicle they use to know justice and to know peace.

I noticed that it is quite challenging to obtain inner peace while being so engaged in what is going on. It Is, however, not impossible! Here are the things that I’ve done over the few weeks that have given me some sense of peace.

First, DETACH. Remove yourself from all media forms. Your eyes are absorbing what you see and what you see is disrupting your peace. Find a chair in a place where there are no electrical outlets. You don’t want your phone to entice you. That defeats your efforts.

Second, take a drive. I thought my manager was joking when he gave me this advice, but I did it anyway. I drove around my immediate area, maybe five miles away from my home. I let the windows down and enjoyed the sunlight, the fresh air, the noisiness of nature, and suburban life. It’s incredible when you get to see and not just look at how majestic the Earth is.

Finally, phone a friend. During trying times, it’s good to connect with someone who understands. I have friends with whom I vent and others who will tell me when it’s time to change the TV station. Friends remind us that we do not have to carry burdens alone, that you don’t have to suffer in silence. Great friends cause you to count your blessings and to find something for which you should be grateful.
I hope that this post will challenge you to view justice and peace without classification. I also hope that you will take time to quiet the world around you to find a few moments of inner peace.

Now, get you some peace!

More later.

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