It started with words. The words were wrong.
"The words discriminate and do not belong!"
So, they scrubbed our pronouns and titles, imaginations soared.
I felt comforted when these words were gone and no more.
Words are powerful tools for ideological manipulation.
They can lift us up or ruin reputations.
Diversity. Social Justice. Hate Speech. Unconscious Bias.
Words can set us free or they can tie us.
They said, “When we see the United States, we see separate races.”
They talked about privilege and guilt and reparations.
“Your ancestors committed a great injustice in the founding of this nation.”
“Our historical chains hold us back. Use your privilege. Use your white station.”
So it was that people will do as people do.
They remembered the past because the past was so new.
They saw color where color was not always there.
Sometimes, great wrongs can be fixed, but it is exceedingly rare.
Over the years, there were more instances to help them remember their pain.
So, their hearts hardened, and they forgot what was previously gained.
They forgot their achievements, contributions, and all that had been done.
Affirmative action. Barack Obama. The pendulum had swung.
“I see no color. That is how I live my life.”
They said, “You cannot understand. You have not experienced my strife.”
My path had been easier than some, I had to admit.
But my ancestors had their own stories of racism so not all this fit.
I know that there are more colors, more peoples, more stories of pain.
Are there just two colors? One for pain and one for blame?
I think that the answer is more complex than that.
With blame there is no ownership, to own where you are at.
In was the year of the virus, the tipping point they said,
a man named George Floyd was choked and lay dead.
Journalists were waiting, eager to sell their profanities.
And the world viewed over and over, our worst, our inhumanities.
CNN convicted the police without all the facts.
Was it murder? Was it racism? The city of Minneapolis covered its tracks.
The protesters gathered in the streets to shout their demands.
America shed tears for the plight that was over the land.
They said, "Our institutions must be re-imagined, for equality, so that people of color can truly be free."
I thought to myself, “Your demands don’t sound very equal to me.”
They said, “The country’s problems started at its founding and are deeply systemic.”
“Your words are lies!”, I shouted, but no one heard me over the noise of the pandemic.
They demanded that we forget all that we built.
They demanded with anger, then violence, and fueled guilt.
They shouted “racism” around the world and all that I could see
was that somehow, we forgot the kind of people we were supposed to be.
Monuments were toppled. Names were erased.
They vilified old heroes. Churches and graves were defaced.
They re-branded our products, flags, and battleships and more.
They tried to erase what they said they could no longer endure.
The protests continued day after day,
The powers of the states were used to keep the Feds at bay.
There were rumors that we had all been played.
I dropped to my knees and started to pray.
Some leaders chose silence. Others took a knee.
Masks were removed. Demagogues joined in the revelry.
“We are so pleased to see that you are occupying our streets.”
“We support you! Paint your slogan! Tell our voters about us in your tweets!”
“The police are our enemies!” “You must de-fund them right now!”
You must invest in communities of color, but only one color is allowed!”
“Black is the color, that matters today!”
“Use your white privilege. Confess your white sins. Make our pain go away!”
They marched for their cause and great contributions were made.
Which filled candidates’ pockets with all that was paid.
And our leaders said “Yes. De-funding! That sounds like a patriotic ideal!”
“But we still want our bodyguards for the rest of this year.”
“You may continue your protests, for now."
"Cast your votes and we'll make good on our promises; we avow."
“And before we forget, thank you for pushing the masses in our direction."
“We have more for you to do after we win the fall election.”
Words can start a revolution. A slogan can sound true.
Black Lives Matter. The words of progress? A manufactured crisis to manipulate you.
Democratic socialists. Alinsky, Piven, the Weather Underground.
A crisis is never wasted. Puppet masters hidden in a crowd.
Mayors, governors, unions, media. Sleeper cells ready to be engaged.
Trading freedom for utopia. Our constitution and voices to be erased.
They used George Floyd’s death. They had a larger plan.
If not George Floyd, time would have given them another man.
They said they wanted justice, but it only brought hate.
People kept their words and thoughts hidden across the United States.
They silenced the vocal and bullied people to comply.
They erased history, but now I forget why.
New laws were made. New inequalities were drafted.
The people where quiet. Their silence was crafted.
All colors can be guilty of creating pain and despair.
But love can unite us if anyone cares.
Some remember the time before, but most have forgot.
And wish for the friendships that this movement made not.