Today I lost 20 of my babies. Yes my babies! Someone unknown to me came and ripped them out of my future. S/he came and stole them, robbing me of their smiles, their giggles, their groans, their scraped knees, their futures.
So many babies I’ve lost. Trayvon Martin, Jordan Davis, Shelly Frey,… Too many names to list. Too many salty tears flowing like a river bursting its banks down my cheeks. I want to cry to God; I want to sing every spiritual I know. Jesus, wash me in the blood. But it doesn’t stop my heart from pounding. It doesn’t stop my head from pounding as I feel my blood pressure rise.
Rise I say, rise! I rise up from my kneeling position. I’m desperately looking for safety. I’m looking for my babies. Their cries haunt me. My cries, like a wounded animal, haunt me. I try to muffle it in my sleeve for fear that my child might hear. After all, who wants to have their child see them sobbing uncontrollably?
Minute by minute we are given details of how I lost my babies—well at least some of my babies. Only some of my babies are recognized. Some others, because of their race and class, remain unknown and unseen. Experts on personalities talk about the type of person who stole my babies. Pundits on TV pontificate about the need for stricter gun control. But none of them truly understand.
None of them truly understand the pain I feel.
Society is robbing me of my babies.
We protest abortion clinics. We argue that abortion is a form of genocide. We talk about a woman’s right to choose. Well what about my damn right to have my babies live and not have society take them away from me?
Yes, society is worse that any gun seller; society is worse than any abortion doctor. Yet after every tragedy no one talks about how we are responsible for each other. NO one talks about how we work harder and longer trying to achieve some magic bullet that is to offer us a more fulfilling life while we literally stand by and watch them die (remember the gentleman in the subway?). We build more and more houses and hide them behind gates to keep out the bad elements. While we ignore that the bad elements can’t be contained. Greed, selfishness, narcissism, loneliness, and alienation these are our enemies and they can’t be contained behind any gate. They can’t be contained behind a six-figure income and poverty sure as heck doesn’t help either.
We concern ourselves with our social media presence while ignoring the old lady next door. We walk around with our phones glued to the palm of our hands. Yet, the body of a young woman murdered by her boyfriend lay decomposing in his bathtub for months. We are busy wanting to be seen, yet not seeing each other. We are busying playing roles as opposed to living roles. We are busy talking about economic poverty (a real issue!) while ignoring all the other deficits we face. Our politicians are busy separating people by class and family formation—acting like that makes some us better than the others. Our religious leaders are busy separating us based on their human and flawed understanding of God/Allah/Jah/Hashem/Jehovah...All the while they and we are ignoring each other. We’ve stopped taking care of each other! Who politicizes this issue? Who pontificates on this? Who regulates this?
This is me trying to deal with the grief I feel after the recent news of another mass shooting. I wrote this from the heart and posted without editing. I just needed to get this out.