Taking time on my day off to reflect on the year I spent outside of the United States. I’ve never felt more like a refugee and asylum seeker than I do now. As I am proud of my independence and respect the depth of my strength I remain lost as I watch my country seek to repeat the history it’s lost. I want to celebrate my year, but am faced with finding ways to never go back.
A year to the day a young black woman was slashed to death on a train platform waiting for a train. It’s the same platform I would wait on for my trains living in the Bay Area. Most time I would need to wait late at night on this platform for a train. A black man was legally murdered in the state of Florida over a parking space. I think of the young men shot multiple times while being armed with a cell phone or wallet.
Recently, a black business owner was ambushed by San Francisco police while opening his own business. I think of black men forced to lie on the ground unarmed, in their pyjamas because they were “moving funny”. This was after they themselves called the police. I seeth with anger at the white people who catch feelings when a person of color is in the vicinity and threaten these people with calling the police knowing damn well what the next actions could be. White people call the police on children selling water or lemonade, as my university friend’s kids are doing the same damn thing across the bridge.
I use Facebook as a way of connecting with my people across the planet. There hasn’t been one day this past year that I haven’t read something to bring me to tears. Each time my mom stated that the U.S. was still the best country in the world my head threatened to explode and all the while innocent people were being bombed in their homes 20 minues away from where my parents live.
Recently, I was face timing with my father. He told me about his upcoming road trip through a section of the south with my mom. I am so scared for them. I don’t want them to go. They’re retired. They have worked hard throughout their lives and have nice things. They deserve everything they have, but what if some cracker decides they have too much. They want to judge what my parents deserve. I fear for black children as they are “playfully” lynched or even demeaned by class mates by calling them maids and whatnot.
Will U.S. citizens need to apply for asylum in other countries? Which countries would take them, take care of them and treat them with respect? Vietnam isn’t it. They have racial discrimination also. I really try to imagine a place to be able to celebrate me. I personally don’t know if I could celebrate with all the scars I have, mentally and emotionally challenging me daily.
I am scared of the United States of America. In my perspective, it has become a state that perpetuates fear and fear begets violence systematically and socially.
And you know what, I want to be happy about the Thai boys rescued from the cave in Northern Thailand. I really do! That experience will be a mark on their lives and we can only wait to see how it manifests. 1000s of people from multiple countries came to help rescue those boys and their coach. Now, what about the 100s of children held in cages in the United States? How will the months of being kept in cages affect them physically and mentally? Ask the average black citizen who have been passing the effects of slavery in their dna for generations.
White people are fucking scary as fuck…destruction is their way of life. The gaslighting they intend to use to control situations is a collective mental illness. Their lack of education, socailization and self evaluation has left us, people of color, at a point of struggle that resembles countries newly colonized. It’s brutal. It’s overwhelming. We’re left not just with memories, but physical actualizations of the violations of body and mind. We are left to relive what those violators have forgotten or rather ignore.