A few months ago, I wrote a Letter to My Son, a lot of it was about how to be a healthy man, devoid of toxic masculinity, highlighting some of the most important lessons I’ve learned. Today, I write this one to him when he gets older. P.S. You can check my letters to my daughter and black women here.
There is a common misconception in the media about black people and the police. Some people trust them, some hate them, and some are indifferent. Growing up in Detroit, I was indifferent. A lot of my personal interactions were good. Police came to school to talk, Police Athletic League, and some of the officers I knew. Yet, the hardest part was knowing that I was lucky.
Following the full acquittal of countless officers killing unarmed, innocent, or mentally ill Black people nationwide visibly for the last few years, I tend to go through emotional phases. Sometimes I am angry, dejected, depressed, contemplative, confused, frustrated, and even moved to action. However, since I’ve been getting deeper into my Bible, I’ve struggled with something.
I had planned to write about SZA’s CTRL album as I’ve been listening to at, reading the lyrics, and finding interviews all week. However, I find myself with a heavy heart today. The murder of Philando Castile by Officer Jeronimo Yanez reached complete acquittal of all charges today. I’m sick.
“From everyone who has been given much, much will be demanded; and from the one who has been entrusted with much, much more will be asked.”
In popular culture, there is continually a debate on whether celebrities are role models. Does Rihanna or Meryl Streep have the right to speak on political matters? Is there an inherent responsibility of popularity, leadership, or influence? Does politics belong in sports, music, art, or entertainment? What’s the unwritten requirement of fame and power? Should people speak up and should we allow it?