I have thought about this for some time, with the whole overarching goal to be to convey a thoughtful message and to drive new behaviors that would bring communities closer together and to hopefully, save precious lives.
I am talking about the recent spate of violence against Asians in America. I live in Brooklyn, New York, one of the five boroughs of the acclaimed New York City, and it is a heavy blend of cultures, to say the least, Brooklyn.
It has pockets of every culture throughout, I think, with certain enclaves in particular places and so on. In my community, I see and interact with a variety of races, practically all of them may be, as the community is that diverse.
Therefore, I see everyone, and on the contrary, I must wonder, who sees me? There are those who make eye contact and say, "Hello," and there are those who avoid it, and the community overall, which indicates an openness to what I bring to the table, and I have to say that no one truly knows what I bring, until he or she decides to talk to me and to learn about what I have to offer.
Personally, I am distrustful of the Asian community, simply because I have felt slighted by them on more than one occasion, and for the same reasons, that I have come to surmise.
Truthfully, I have all of my experiences categorized by race, and I will sum it up for you with good measure; They have generally been good experiences, but they have also lacked some important understanding, which I hope to uncover, by getting into their detail.
But I first want to warn you, about reading further, just to know; I, instead, urge you to read with a mind searching for understanding and direction, because my expectation here, is that my readers are not talkers, but doers and action-minded people, like I am.
I feel that my thoughts and feelings about the Asian community are universal, and I feel that it is translating to some of the anger that we are seeing in various parts of New York City.
My favorite laundromat is owned by Asians, and I like it particularly because of their, undue niceness, which is an expensive currency I feel, from Asians towards Blacks. These individuals, make eye contact, bid me "goodnight," when I leave, they hold the door for me, and they generally do the little things that made me feel like they see me as a human being and not as a commodity, which, unfortunately, is rare.
What we don't talk about enough, is Asian to Black racism, which exists OUTSIDE OF CHINA TOO, and Japan, and in those other places where dark skin earns you terrorism.
Despite my many positive experiences with Asian Americans, I have some serious notable exceptions, which have made me think that they do not value my personhood, from their brash tone, and their dismissive actions.
Many of the businesses owned and operated in my neighborhood are Asian-run, so Asian interactions with Blacks is invaluable to communities and to businesses, and I feel that there needs to be greater assimilation on the part of the Asians, into the communities that they frequent, or else, they run the risk of being looked at and treated like, outsiders in them.
Just like policing has had to change so that relationships between white police officers and the black constituency became more peaceful, the same, for those who want to run laundromats and hair salons and dry cleaners.
I think that it is time that Asians recognize that they have a side to choose in America's race war, and so far, they are paying for the side that they have chosen.
The reality is, many Asians treat blacks, like everybody else: you come into our ravaged communities and you nice it up, but you seem to loathe it at the same time, as you choose the suburb life over the pressures of the big city, which is always pressing, and constantly moving to crush up anything in its path.
I rarely see any Asian-Black conversations beyond the niceties that I mentioned, and it signals the need for a deeper connection between those two, in my opinion, and one that does not rely on past, incomplete narratives.
We need Blacks and Asians to come together to fight white oppression, as this is the greater demon that has been causing us to harm ourselves with racism.
Racism is a beast that must be tamed through relationships, and through connections, not just through teaching people to fight back
This beast must also be tamed by education, kindness, compassion, mercy, and love, all of which are capable emotions for the human being.
I strongly urge community leaders to encourage events that promote education about or communities and their people, and people should be encouraged to tell their stories to one another, as everyone is less threatening when we are listening to each other's hurt and pain.
I also recommend that Whites become involved in this by strengthening ties with both races by NOT trying to strong-arm and rule them, but by being useful to them, in their time of need.
If whites can stop worrying about trying to tell everyone that they are better than them, and just start focusing on how to improve our world, rather than defrauding it, it would make assimilation and a whole lot easier for the rest of the races, who just want to succeed, just like our white brothers and sisters have.
Indeed it is a complex problem, but with graded solutions in my view, and it is times like these that we must capitalize on to build the good structures that our communities are so seeking. I think that if, you are in America, and you are of a particular race, there is something that you are telling yourself, and for our future's sake, this is what I think, each race should be telling itself:
"We are all, able and capable of being great like the whites have shown us. Therefore we must continue to strive to be our best selves by highlighting our uniqueness. But we must have a limit, or else, humanity will self-destruct."
This is the overarching theme that should resonate with every single race, is the balance not to self-destruct like whites, have when we are reaching for the stars.
First place is something that we covet for its obvious prestige and rewards, and yet, in our culture, first place is usually held by one person, or one team, and the idea that to be first is to be singled out from the many in the field I think, has been populated by Christianity.
However, in coveting first place, there is an error if one thinks to sabotage and destroy others in the process, and to even see them as competition.
What races need to realize is we are on equal planes despite our material possessions, and the only true marker of our worth lies within us, for only a few to behold.
It is for these reasons that good connections are needful, as material possessions are blinding to the human, and it causes all kinds of shock waves when the rich and poor coexist.
When people are able to see past their differences to their commonalities, communities are stronger and relationships are more lasting and rewarding.
One of the issues that these communities have to face is a language barrier, and offering Chinese languages to Africans and other marginalized races is another great way to challenge these movable barriers from both sides.
I say that we have the pick of the litter here when we consider all of the ways we can be useful in our communities to tamp down hate.
It is simply a matter of knowing oneself and one's race's past roles in racism in America, and then hopefully, this honest snapshot can move you to be the person that the world needs: honest, fair, dynamic, and worldly. Do you have what it takes?