Strange Fruit is Hanging from every corner of this country

A Collection of Narratives for Processing and Reflecting on Police Brutality, #Ferguson and Beyond: #BlackLivesMatter

Strange Fruit is Hanging from every corner of this country

Strange Fruit is Hanging from every corner of this country

I am in mourning this morning. So much pain. So much death.

These remain very challenging times for Black People in America. One killing after another, one “legally” government sanctioned reminder after another to remind black folks that we are expendable in this country.

Season's Greetings from Ferguson PD

Season’s Greetings from Ferguson PD

I want to take this moment to; as sincerely as one can communicate electronically, send love and solidarity to the black people out there who live work and play in predominantly white environments and have been met with outrage and invalidation this week instead of support; who have been given no quarter to breathe, no space to grieve.

racial incident bingo I also want to take this moment to send love to the black people out there who may have internalized the racism that is used against us on a daily basis, and may have acted out that internalization in some way toward yourself, or someone else this week. It really isn’t our fault, although we’re all told and expected to believe that it is.

To grow up in a society that devalues black life and contributions as much as the current system, and not be impacted by it in any way would be nothing short of a miracle. As the conversations and protests continue; as the reality that the nation is still failing to be true to what it says on paper continues to be laid out for all to see across the nation and around the world, I hope you experience an awakening. 

This same hope goes out to people who are white; even those who would claim to be a part of the solution, but whose steadfast belief in/inability to recognize/willful desire not to acknowledge/the gross contradictions inherent in the rule of law in this country result in doing more harm than good. 

Because sometimes it’s easier to believe in the lie. 

Like many others may be, I find myself in a vulnerable place.

The core of many of my driving values are being challenged, and like others before me, I’m trying desperately to respond to the constant assaults in ways that are consistent with them.

One of the ways I’ve been getting and giving support is through sharing my own, and learning from the narratives of others both on and offline. No one can do it by themselves.

I haven’t been in the mood to write much lately, but there are so many heartfelt narratives out there.

I’ve decided to create an ongoing list of links to them below. This note will be updated as more links are found. If you have other thoughts or links to share, list them in the comment section.

 —A Collection of Narratives for Processing and Reflecting on Police Brutality, #Ferguson and Beyond: #BlackLivesMatter

I am utterly undone: My struggle with black rage and fear after Ferguson
Brittney Cooper, Salon

Things to stop being distracted by when a black person gets murdered by police
Mia McKenzie, Black Girl Dangerous

Can you breathe?
L’Heureux Dumi Lewis-McCoy, Uptown Notes

Crime and Punishment
Charles M. Blow, The New York Times

The Stages of What Happens When There’s Injustice Against Black People
Luvvie, Awesomely Luvvie

The New Rules for Black People in America
Carvell Wallace, Quartz

On Eric Garner, Michael Brown, Oscar Grant, and Black Men That I Love
Tonjie Reese, Afros & Love Songs

Nebeu Abrah, Femgeniuses

Dear White Allies: Stop Unfriending Other White People Over Ferguson
Spectra, Spectra Speaks

White People Feel Targeted by the Ferguson Protests–Welcome to Our World
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Time Magazine

Facebook Post
Ilana Alazzeh, Facebook

5 Ways to Teach About Michael Brown and Ferguson in the New School Year
Christopher Emdin, The Huffington Post

White America’s scary delusion: Why its sense of black humanity is so skewed
Brittney Cooper, Salon

Michigan in Color: I Am Michael Brown
Simon Rivers, Michigan in Color

My Vassar College Faculty ID Makes Everything OK
Kiese Laymon, Gawker

#Criminwhilewhite is Not Solidarity
Stephanie Rose, For Harriet

Telling My Son About Ferguson
Michelle Alexander, The New York Times

What You Mean By #AllLivesMatter
Arielle Newton, Black Millennial Musings

Space and Grace
Brandy Turnbow, Feminists in Student Affairs


From Aspiring Humanitarian, Relando Thompkins, MSW, LLMSW



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Written by

I'm a Social Justice Educator and Aspiring Humanitarian who is interested in conflict resolution, improving intergroup relations, and building more equitable and inclusive communities. "Notes from an Aspiring Humanitarian" is my blog, where I write about issues of diversity, inclusion, equity, and social justice. By exploring social identities through written word, film & video, and other forms of media, I hope to continue to expand and enrich conversations about social issues that face our society, and to find ways to take social action while encouraging others to do so as well in their own ways.

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2 Responses

  1. December 15, 2014

    […] to become more involved in social justice issues. And individual psychiatrists, psychologists, social workers, and other mental-health professionals developed methods for identifying and treating […]

  2. January 20, 2015

    […] Work: A Collection of Narratives for Processing and Reflecting on Police Brutality, #Ferguson and Beyond: … Relando Thompkins, MSW, […]

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