I recently purchased a shirt with one word on it: resist. The shirt has Wonder Woman on the front as well, so when I saw it, I was like yes!!! But I’m a thinker and often reflect on things I’ve said and done and so I asked myself during a moment of reflection, why exactly I had felt compelled to purchase the shirt. What exactly is there for me to resist? And, man, did I open up a can of worms.
As much as I may not like the current president, my “resistance” does little to prevent him from (1) continuing to serve in the capacity of President of the United States, (2)work feverishly to erase all the progress made by the first black president of the U.S. (hmmm, I wonder why), and (3) continue to remain popular among people who blame the “fake news” for his misdeeds. Russia? Fake news. Racist bigot? Fake news. A health care plan that knocks people off health care and places the financial burden on poor people while giving breaks to the rich? Fake news. Besides who needs a break anyway? Certainly not poor people. Because it’s their fault they’re poor, right? Riiiigggghht. But I digress. So, again, what is there to resist? I mean, what really is within my power to change?
White “Christian” males will still decide what I can and cannot do to my body. They can continue to oppress minorities (blacks, Hispanics, and women) and claim that everyone has the same opportunities. Side-eye to those who foolishly believe that the fact that America had a black president is enough to signify that racism no longer exists. See Donald Trump.
Okay, so, again, what can I resist and actually have a real impact on?
I resist the foolishness that says that because more than 90 percent of “poor people” have refrigerators, they’re not “really” poor. I resist the dumbass stereotypes about “poor people” not wanting health insurance because they have iPhones. I resist buying into the negative stereotypes of people of color portrayed on TV. I know all black women aren’t messy women who need a daily drama fix and who have low self-esteem and daddy issues. I also know that not all black men are drug-dealing men who desire nothing more in life than to kill other black men. I resist accepting that a 12-year-old should be shot and killed for playing with a toy gun. I resist accepting that all black people are criminal. I resist the society that accepts that my son should be a target for harassment, following or arresting because he dares to live, dream, walk, speak, drive, shop, or anything else while black. I resist accepting that I can’t be angered by the murder of unarmed black men by thugs with a badge while simultaneously having high regard for police officers who perform their duties with honor and selflessness. I resist the belief that I cannot simultaneously resist racist treatment of people of color in a system that was designed and oppress non-White people while also resisting mistreatment of black females by males. I resist the idea that pro-black automatically means anti-white. I resist society’s insistence that I accept at face value what it believes to be true, thereby invalidating my own feelings and experiences. I resist anything that makes me uncomfortable in my own skin, unhappy in my life or denies me inner peace. I resist labels. I resist settling for less than. I resist society’s idea of how I should live my life.
I resist through my poetry (In fact, I have two resistance poems that will be published in a popular magazine next week. I won’t say which one yet because I haven’t signed the contract yet.). I resist through the stories I tell. I resist through the books I read. I resist through the messages that I pass on to my kids. I resist through the way I interact with people. I resist with love.
I resist. Because I can.
Peace & Love,