As we all know, Baltimore hit the news worldwide. A week ago, Freddie Gray died of spinal injuries. Not until Saturday, 4/25/2015, during an Orioles game, did I come across a violent protest on Pratt St near Camden Yards in downtown Baltimore. It felt like I was there, but I was at home watching it on one of the major news channels. I didn’t pay attention to which one it was. I was in state of shock.
Three days later, I found out that a peaceful protest was held on the same day, 4/25/2015. Why must I found this out much later? No news channel covered this story. Several photos of the peaceful protest at City Hall were taken by Baltimoreans and were circulated on social media. Before the discovery of the photos, on Monday, 4/27/2015, a riot broke out near my place of employment (Mondawmin Mall). I was even more in state of shock. I was mortified. My anxiety began to creep.
Yesterday, the National Guard and other law enforcers showed up. This morning I woke up not long after curfew ended and said to myself, “I am in a real life purge.” I knew that I shouldn’t have seen neither movie.
Most of my life I have ran from Baltimore City. I made stupid decisions in my life, because I didn’t want to face the truth about me and where I was born. Today, I chose to stay. Despite colorism, I chose to stay. Despite the sexual abuse, I chose to stay. Despite the ridicule against disability, I still chose to stay. All these experiences because of living in urban communities came from anger. I tried to escape anger but took anger with me.
No program or leadership exists to manage this type of anger. This is spiritual anger. It is now rooted in the soul. Though, not all causes are lost. We all have just forgotten who we all are. The good news is, despite poor media coverage, we have the power to remember who we all are and put forth positive change in our communities. The concept of autarky needs to be taught in urban communities—not concepts such as reforming, which pretty much means “dumbing down.” Make the A.