I’ve taken my time to read, learn and formulate something about this and it’s been a journey of guilt through the eyes of a white British woman. This is what I’ve come up with.
Black Lives Matter- “I can’t breathe”
“All lives matter” some have said,
Well of course they do, but listen instead.
Imagine your child was ill or in harm
And you went outside to raise the alarm.
Instead of support as you hoped you would get
“All children matter” is how you were met.
You never said that wasn’t true,
It’s just that right now the threat is to you.
Destroying the rainforest threatens our earth,
But “all forests matter” so what is it worth?
That forest right there is doing just fine,
Meanwhile, the rainforests are in decline.
Can you see what I’m trying to say?
Sometimes things need action today.
Be grateful if racism does not affect you,
But open your eyes to what others go through.
I know I am privileged and I am white,
I can’t understand, try as I might.
But I am lucky to have the choice,
To live without fear and have a voice.
I have the chance to learn and reflect,
Show solidarity, support and respect.
Racism is not about freedom of speech,
It’s not an opinion is what we’ll teach.
Racist attacks are an abuse of power,
Don’t sit back in your ivory tower.
It’s good to be proud of where you’re from,
But look at your history, see what’s been done.
Look at events, read between the lines,
Don’t brush over these racial crimes.
Don’t be silent when things are said,
Protest and challenge them instead.
Black lives matter and this I know,
I’ll project these words as far as they’ll go.
I write this to show that I don’t accept,
“I can’t breathe”- to these words we’ve wept.