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One White Momma's Opinion

" I can't breathe"

For the most part I try and stay out of the political fray that so easily entangles people, myself included if I am not careful. But on this I cannot stay silent as this has nothing to do with politics. If you choose to make it political, skip what I have to say!

As a young mom, I had four children by the time I was 25, I knew part of my job was to raise children to respect authority. The first authority I wanted them to respect and honor was God. My relationship with Jesus was one of the most important things I had to pass on to my children. As a result, I tried hard to live by what I understood would model what and who Jesus was. He was a man of love for the underserved and undeserved. He fought hard against the injustice of his times by elevating women and men who society had deemed “less than”. He was strong and gentle.

The second authority I taught them to respect was their father and myself and then each other as siblings. The sibling part was way harder than I thought it would be.

The other people I wanted them to respect were people in positions of authority because that was the right thing to do. Here is where my heart begins to ache. As a white mom not once, did I think about talking to my kids to “fear” authority. I did not worry if my son who at 16 decided that he would push the limits of how fast his car could go and get a speeding ticket, would be drug out of his car or forced to answer questions that had nothing to do with the speed of his vehicle. I knew that he would have to pay for the ticket and maybe even lose his license.

As a white mom I never even considered what would happen if my son who got caught smoking would get anything other than a warning. As a white mom I never thought about my sons being treated with anything other than mutual respect as a human being. As a white mom I never once said to my kids they needed to look over their shoulder when they were stopped by anyone in authority. As a white mom it never even entered my mind to make sure to tell my sons that they needed to be afraid because the stood out due to the color of their skin.

My heart breaks for all my friends who are mommas of children of color and how much different it must be. I would have believed this to be true of my mom’s generation but not mine.

I can’t imagine what it must be like to make sure that you drill into your sons and daughters of color they have to be extra cautious and extra wary of how they respond to authority. I can’t imagine what it must be like to have the added concern of when your son or daughter is late for curfew if it is because they were stopped and mistreated by people because of their color. I can’t imagine having to worry if my son or daughter ,who might look like a suspect of a crime, will be mistreated until the mistake is realized.

I will never fully understand what it is like to be in their shoes but what I am doing is crying for the mommas who have to deal with that part of parenting that honestly, I never did. Call it white privilege, call it racism, call it what you will, but whatever you call it, it is WRONG!

This goes back to first person I taught my kids to respect and honor and that is Jesus. The only people I ever see Jesus standing up to and against were people in authority who did not care well for those under them. The people who imposed rules for the sake of rules to keep others down and subservient.

I want to be counted among the voices of women who say no more! Not on our watch. I want to somehow link arms with my fellow mommas of every color to say no more, this is not ok. You momma should not have to worry because your kiddo has a different shade of skin.

Please do not respond

by telling me we don’t know the whole story..we never will and we never do. That is somewhat immaterial because everyone has a story and every story matters.

Because Black Lives Matter

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