I Don't Want to be Black


I don't want to be black,

Those are the words that my ten year old son told me with tears in his eyes.

He is tired of being viewed as a threat.

5'1, 130 pounds, broad shoulders-

Easily mistaken for a man,

A man who is black,

Another black man, who could easily be shot in the back.

Seen as having a weapon,

Even when he is empty-handed.

Seen as resisting arrest,

Because he doesn't understand why he is arrested.

Seen as obstructing when what is obstructed is his liberty,

Not wanting to be black,

Because there's too many things he is taught not to be.

Not wanting to be black,

Even though his black role models are hard-working,

Educated examples of who to be.

Not wanting to be black,

Because it's hard to be black, and feel free.

Warned that when in the presence of police don't move,

Don't turn, never run,

Don't grab or hold onto anything,

That they can say is a gun.

Watch who you hang with,

What is seen is not always what is perceived.

Warned over and over,

So I won't be the next-

Black mother left to grieve.

Told to never become irate,

Even if he is falsely blamed or accused.

That " Hands up, don't shoot,"

Really means don't move!

Because " I was in fear for my life,"

Is the excuse they will use,

And even when there is evidence,

That is not the truth,

Justice is refused.


By Mo Poetry Phillips

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