Wednesday, April 29, 2015

For this guy?

In conversations and on social media the rap sheet of Freddie Gray has been posted and touted over and over again as a justification for his mysterious death, however it happened.  He is a repeat drug offender.  He is a thug. So why the big fuss over his death? 

"Look at this list.  It goes on and on. 8 or 10 ten cases.  Since he was 18.  How does one person have time to do this many bad things?  How can one person disobey the law so often?  This isn't a rap sheet.  It's more like a book."

"And you good people of Baltimore, this is the guy that drives you to action?  This is the guy that you are passionate about?  This is the guy that provokes you to confront power in the darkness, to risk your lives because of his death?  This is the guy that makes you come into the streets and turn everything upside down?  This is the reason you burned it all down? "

"For this guy?"

Echoes.  From another discussion that began a long, long time ago. And every day since.

"Look at this list."  He opened the book and gripped the binding so hard the ancient spine began to crack and break, flaking off and floating downward.

"How can one person have broken the laws so often?  Why should you care about what happens to him?  He doesn't seem to care, why should you?"  The book slammed shut, the sound echoing down the endless hall.  "Why should you try?  He will never amount to anything.  He will never change.  Let him die. What difference would that make?"

"You know this could hurt.  Those streets are mean.  Those people can be mean. They kill. You could be killed.  And why? For the likes of him?"

"Are you truly going down there with all the violence and hate?  Are you going to that place knowing you will be surrounded by hopelessness in the darkness?"

"Are you going to risk it all, to give all you have, for the likes of a low-life like him?

His back had been turned as he listened to the angry, tempting words of the handsome speaker.  As he turned his eyes were full of tears.

"Yes, I am."


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