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Black & Blue

I woke up this morning and while hearing the news come in from around the country I decided to scan my Facebook page. Some of my friends were despairing over more senseless deaths of black men at the hands of the police. “Black Lives Matter”, they posted… Yes they do.

It’s hard to imagine the same situation that brought about the death of Philando Castile happening to a middle age white man wearing a shirt and tie, maybe with a crew cut, who makes a similar statement about being armed and having a “concealed carry permit” to the officer who had just pulled him over for a broken taillight. That was the point my friends were posting about. We may be created equal, but were aren’t being treated as such. And I honor them.

It’s hard to seek the middle way. It’s hard to try to recognize the value of all life, and realize that not everyone out there sees the humanity that we all share deep down. That those who were targeted and killed have a mother too. They too have a heart, and lungs, and they can smile or cry. Yet someone saw them as somehow just a little bit different from themselves, and therefore possibly dangerous. It’s hard to watch, and it’s hard to know.

I have other friends on Facebook this morning who posted that “Blue Lives Matter” because they or someone close to them is in law enforcement. They put their lives on the line everyday, many time for a populace who are ungrateful or untrusting of them. They woke up this morning with an irreplaceable fear that they themselves, or someone they love is in greater danger today because of their job. Not necessarily for their skin color, but that they chose to give their lives to public service. They are now targets too, and they too have a mother. They too can laugh, and most certainly can cry. I honor them as well.

Two different groups who at their most basic levels are not different. But for the blindness of a few, many thousands are less safe today. And our country is a little more bruised. Not broken, since we are still a while nation, but most certainly bruised.

Black and blue.