A Different Virus infects black people. The white Virus.

By AAM

Winter/Spring 2020

Ahmaud Arbery would have turned 26 years old today. May 8, 2020.  He was murdered by a father and son duo. A white father and son who assumed his intentions and killed him because of their own prejudice against black people. I have watched the video a couple of times and every time I watch it my heart sinks before the gun goes off. Here is another black person, another black man being murdered.

When will this be over? When will the death and killing end? These killings really represent how much worth black people have in this country. Ahmaud was shot on the 23 of February, 2020. His killers were arrested this week. It took 3 months for two white men to get arrested. During The Central Park Five, they arrested 5 innocent boys within the hour. We have better technology and science today and it took Georgia police 3 months to arrest the people who were known to be on the phone with the police.

I went on a run and I was scared and saddened. Who is next? Throughout this covid 19 pandemic, the police beat up black people for not having masks and being out. They give white people masks. How do I walk, run, and live in this world as a black person when there is a lack of safety? I have had dreams of my loved ones being shot. How do we make changes and get a seat at the table when we may get shot off of the chair? At the end of my run, I teared up because of Ahmaud Arbery, the man who was killed.

Not only are we being shot, but we are also and will continue to be most affected by covid. Black and brown people are dying more from Covid:  Almost one-third of infections nationwide have affected black Americans, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control, though blacks represent only 13 percent of the U.S. population. Likewise, nearly one-third of those who have died across the country are black, according to an analysis of available state and local data by the Associated Press. While the virus does not discriminate, the whole American system does. Our housing, our economics, and health care systems are racist and discriminatory.  Environmental racism, lack of jobs and job opportunities, unaffordable housing, poverty, social conditions, all of this influenced by policies that put black people more vulnerable to what’s to come in our new normal.

Despite this, We rise up and support each other. There have been safe marches and runs to stand with Ahmaud. Organizations like The Executive Leadership Council, ColorComm, The Association of Black Psychologists, American Association of Blacks in Energy (AABE), African American Planning Commission (AAPC) to name just a few of the amazing organizations that are supporting the black community through many ways. Some are helping poverty and homelessness and others are making sure we have a seat at the table for policy work.

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