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Being Black in America

Being Black in America

By Esther Taylor 

As a person of color, 2020 was a wakeup call for me to pay attention to how people of color are treated in society. Racism is deeply rooted in the United States, and that was made clear with the January 6 riot at the Capitol in Washington D.C. If it had been people protesting for Black Lives Matter, the police and other authorities’ actions would have been different—even violent—towards those protesters. That being said, it is very hardening for me to see how the Breonna Taylor case was treated and the continuous outcry of justice for her and her family. With those things taking place in the U.S., it is clear to me that racism has been alive and thriving, and it is something that all of us living in America need to pay attention to and combat against.  

Esther Taylor. Esther Tayor. Photo by ASWWU Photo. 

One of the ways that I have spoken out against racism is on my Facebook account. In the summer of 2020, I posted a poem I wrote about the George Floyd situation where I mentioned, “When there’s JUSTICE, there’s PEACE.” Also, a caption that I posted on my Facebook account, in acknowledging the color of my skin with a photo taken of me, was “BLACK AND PROUD. AND NO… I DID NOT STUTTER:).” This was an “in-your-face and me embracing who I am” post for everyone I am friends with on Facebook.  

Last summer, I also peacefully protested in downtown Walla Walla with others. During that time, it was truly a great experience for me to see multiple people support the Black Lives Matter movement and equality for people of color living in the U.S.  

In using my Facebook account and peacefully protesting in downtown Walla Walla last summer, I am truly proud of the growth that I made in using my voice for good and paying better attention to what is going on in the world. 

 I am truly a proud African American woman and I am excited for the changes that will be made in the U.S. to make it a country where all races and nationalities are welcome and treated equally. Black Lives Matter is not just a hashtag. It is a rallying cry for peace, justice, and equality for people of color living in the U.S. 

Melanin 

By Esther Taylor 

My melanin skin is beautiful, it’s what it was made to be. I will not try to look different to please society. 

I am a proud African American woman and I want other African American girls and boys to feel the same about their skin as well.  

We need more acceptance in society in embracing skin colors because we are all not the same. 

We were all created with the rightful color of skin and we will leave the way we came. 

Beauty from within, beauty from the inside out.  

Just because I am Black does not mean that I should have to scream and shout at society to accept me for who I am.  

I was born this way and I will die this way. 

Your gaslighting words and the way you treat me need to be thrown away, for good. 

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What good comes out of division because of the color of my skin? I am not a loser, nor will I ever be. I came to win, and you will not get rid of me, or anyone else that looks like me. 

Us people of color want and deserve to live in society peacefully.  

Enough is enough with the way we have been treated. We shout at the top of our lungs “Black Lives Matter,” but not everyone agrees with that terminology, it’s very clear how people of color are treated when it comes to police brutality. 

 Fearing for our lives is our reality and it should not be that way. We should not have to worry if today will be our last day. Our today should be hope for a better today and a better tomorrow. The black community has faced enough heart ache and sorrow.  

When there’s justice there is peace. The black community has been begging and pleading on our knees for years to stop the ways we are treated in society. 

 When will we be fully heard? When will we receive the justice and peace that we deserve? When I speak up, do not gaslight my experience.  

Hear me out and listen to what I have to say. Do not disregard my feelings. That is not okay. How would you feel if the shoe was on the other foot? If you were black and treated the way the black community has been treated for hundreds of years?  

Let me make it loud and let me make it clear…Black Lives Matter, no matter what! 

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