Are We There Yet?

Are we there yet? In a simple sorrowful response, “No.” “Together” is a dream, “Oneness” and unity are concepts in a nation deeply divided and looking for its collective conscience. Where is that to be found in the midnight of America? This America questions the validity of a life clothed in a darker hue, the validity of its founding document, and it’s very soul. Scripture asks a question

“Why art thou cast down, O my soul? and why art thou disquieted in me? hope thou in God: for I shall yet praise him for the help of his countenance.” Psalm 43:5 (KJV)

But are we there yet? The answer is no as long as an unarmed Andre Maurice Hill’s life is snatched away by another so-called law enforcement officer bullet. No is the for too long endured reality for melanated people. Many are singing the lord’s song in a strange land, searching to cross the utopian Jordan of freedom from death, fear, debasement, and disenfranchisement. Hidden in the old negro spirituals was always the chord of hope. After four hundred plus years, those voices fade into the night and yet unanswered. 

Casey Goodson is gone, and questions concerning his death remain unanswered. Brianna Taylor is gone, and questions remain unanswered. Tamir Rice is long gone, and the “Justice Department won’t pursue charges against officers in Tamir Rice shooting CNN.” 

Where are we then? Is this a place of no return, of no redemption? Is Jordan just a mirage in the middle of the American Twilight? When “there” becomes so seemingly elusive. Somewhere must exist bottom the gravity from which a disoriented world of ambiguity and differed justice can rebound. 

Columbus is my birthplace, and my soul is downcast for the place that I am usually so proud of has fallen to the depths of just another tragic American story. “Columbus is called the opportunity city.” May that become true for the marginalized and discounted black and brown communities of America. Could this time be an opportunity to see the light of justice peak through all of the shed blood? 

Could this be the bottom of hopelessness and the beginning of hope? Two shootings and deaths of black men by law enforcement officers took in the same city within a couple of months. Where is the national outcry? Where are the marchers from around the country? Where are the News networks? Could it be that no burning buildings, looting, and riots in the streets are not worthy of coverage or engagement? 

Some have said that the national outcry was for a political show before the November election. That looks like a real possibility amid the national muteness. The quiet could be an exhausted nation that is sick and tired of being sick and tired, spent by all spilled blood, and still no change. Are we there yet? No! We can begin to travel in the right direction upward and out of this rock bottom in the so-called ‘Opportunity City” to show the downcast nation that there is a pathway toward justice, and it starts now. 

Are we there yet? No, but someday starts in a day like today when the bottom will allow not further submergence, and from here, the only way is up.

Kevin Robinson Executive Director of Accord1

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