Friday, September 11, 2015

Admiration Isn't Enough

(Charleston Church Massacre, 2015)

The screen shows an interview with two Black women
who survived. One lost a son
in the massacre: "I watched him take his last
breath." The other had been ready to die; the killer
"let" her live so she could "tell the story."

The story isn't his. The story's about
an ethnic group that's suffered beyond
comprehension--and had to comprehend. That
the suffering doesn't stop is White Americans'
fault and a nation's mortal wound. Nothing
will be right until White people own up

all the way. All the way, without
deflecting, without explaining away.
I'm tired of admiring
Black people for their courage and dignity
because admiration's passive and useless.

There's such a thing as too much suffering,
by a person, by a people. There's such
a thing as moral failure--of a person,
of White Americans.

hans ostrom 2015

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