An op-ed by Corey Jackson, Director of the Center Against Racism & Trama (CART) and Chairman/CEO of SBX Youth & Family Services
Our Society Is Sick. It’s infected with Hate. This is the reality I came to after the death of Diego at Landmark Middle School and while watching the DC movie JOKER (I should get paid for the plug), it broke my heart to see adults pushing and threatening for the incarceration of the students involved. It was disappointing to see the tragedy being laid at the feet of their parents. What was even more disgusting to see adults using hate and violence to deal with this issue.
This is but a reflection of our society as a whole. You see, violence and hate is taught. It is modeled so perfectly by the actions and words of you and me. No one is innocent.
We saw the sickness again when Brandt Jean hugged his brother’s killer Amber Guyger. Throughout this nation, we saw our friends, family, and self-proclaimed Christians attack a young man in mourning, for showing LOVE to a fellow human being who will receive consequences for her crime. Yes, she is a murderer. Yes, racism was probably involved. However, true LOVE has nothing to do with the actions of the other person. It is not based on how we feel about someone else. Instead of responding with hate, he chose to respond with love. Love doesn’t mean no consequences. Love doesn’t mean support injustice. Love means challenging you to be your better self. Love means a commitment to social justice in the face of hate and oppression. Love means, leave hate and join me. That is BEAUTIFUL.
Hate is on the rise all over the world. After a study by the European Union, they concluded that “Racist and intolerant hate speech in public discourse is escalating; the main targets are asylum-seekers and Muslims,” the council’s Commission against Racism and Intolerance (ECRI) said in the report.
We are witnessing a global sickness that possesses a greater threat than Ebola, AIDS, or the Bird Flu. And we all have it. What is the cure? We must reach down deep in our soul to see what is causing it. Is this who we want to be? We must stop being silent when racism and hate is around us. We must call it out.
We must turn hate into love. It is easier to hate. It is easier to blame. It is harder to love. Let us choose the harder road.