I am now the mother of a boy who is taller than me and stronger than me. I can’t pick him up and carry him anymore. He’s 17 and almost old enough to register with Selective Service. And though he’s:
A normal boy.
A brilliant boy.
A college-bound boy.
A sweet boy.
A black boy.
The above was taken from Denene Millner’s blog entry entitled, Black Boy Swagger, Black Mom Fear. I read it and my eyes teared up. Then I read this: No Apologies….. And my eyes teared up again. I recommend you read them both.
The mom who lives across the street from us is black, and so is her middle school aged son. I don’t know them well enough to know if he hopes to go to college or if he’s a “sweet boy”. I imagine to her he is. And now, after reading the above mentioned blog entries, I imagine that when her son is away from the house or home alone, she has a few more worries than I do about my son. There’s all the normal stuff. The stuff I worry about. Will he get in an accident? Will he forget something important at school? Will he get sick? Will he be influenced by the wrong people? But I’ve never considered my son having to fear the police or others in authority. I’ve never thought about white women finding him intimidating and clinging to their purses as he passes them in a parking lot. I’ve never thought twice about him wearing his black Tates Creek Percussion Ensemble hoodie. When the police cruisers drive down our street, multiple times an evening, I’ve never worried they’d stop at my house because someone had [accused] my son of doing something wrong. Simply because of his skin color. Because that doesn’t happen if you’re white.
Things I wish didn’t happen. Things I wish didn’t have to be considered. Yet, they’re realities and sometimes tragedies, and a [sorry this is happening, I wish I could make it better] probably isn’t enough.