Last month, I wrote a couple of posts (here and here) about black rage in connection with the killing of Michael Brown in Ferguson, MO. I didn’t condemn the rage black folks were feeling about Ferguson, MO then; and I’m not going to condemn it now.
In fact, I’m going to celebrate it. Because we are tired of being patient. And I think that rage was necessary to bring us to where we are today. We are at the precipice of an uprising. The edge of an uprising if you will.
And it’s about time.
While rage is irrational and often unproductive, it has quite possibly moved us beyond thinking of Ferguson, Mo as being solely about Mike Brown. It appears that we have turned the corner (and if we aren’t quite there yet, I’m absolutely suggesting we get there. Now.) so that Ferguson, MO is now about the dignity of black lives all over this country. We are at the point where we demand that the world recognize that #blacklivesmatter. We are sick and tired of it, and we’re not going to take it anymore. “It” means, for starters, we’re not taking police officers killing black men at a rate of 1 every 28 hours anymore.
It’s time for an uprising: an act of resistance or rebellion; a revolt.
I’m not proposing a physically violent revolt or rebellion. I’m proposing a psychologically violent revolt. By that I mean that our patience has ended. We have to demand the end to the daily police brutality against black men. We have to demand that racial profiling end. We have to insist that the police stop beating, maiming and killing us.
Every time we are killed by the police, our souls are traumatized. Our mental state is thrown out of equilibrium. Our blood pressure rises, our hearts race, our temples pulse. That is extremely stressful and distressing and takes a toll on our psyche, not to mention the toll on our physical health. It’s time to give it right back. We have to return the same level of distress to the collective psyche of police departments and communities around this country. They have to know that we will mobilize in a “Mike Brown Minute”. Everywhere. Wherever they misbehave, we have to mobilize. Wherever there is evidence that a “Ferguson” exists anywhere in this country, we have to turn our collective attention there.
We need feet on the ground. We need to ambush legislators with letters and emails. We need to be that city government power structure’s worst nightmare. We need to demand media coverage. We need to create our own coverage via the strength of our pooled social media. We need a full court press. We need an uprising. I described it in more detail here.
Psychological warfare is not for the faint of heart. But confining our angst to kitchen table conversations and Twitter isn’t enough. And losing the momentum we have right now by limiting our rage to the Mike Brown tragedy diminishes us all.
#Blacklivesmatter. All of them. So don’t mistake the meaning of Ferguson. It represents our collective message to this country…indeed the world:
We’re mad and we’re not gonna take anymore.
You did not die in vain Mike. None of you did.