Well-Being and Race

How’re You Livin,’

My name is Dotson Sykes and I am a black man. I know that this article is not necessarily about well-being and health, but rather it is about our cultural well-being as a community. The current affairs of the United States is something that we all have had our eyes on for the past week. It is sad to see the inequity and inequality that continues to plague our nation. The Black Community is in an uproar due to the death of George Floyd. The death of Floyd along with the restlessness of the COVID-19 pandemic escalated the racial tension within the U.S. These two incidences appear to be the straw that broke the camel’s back.

Whatever our different views may be, we can understand and see that the justice system is flawed and needs to be reformed. The justice and judicial system inordinately target people of color who in turn receive harsher punishments, convictions, and sentences. I want reform. I want a change in the justice system. However, there is a right and a wrong way of doing so.

I support and stand with the Black Lives Matter Movement. As a part of the Black Community, I agree with the protests and the movements in order to seek reform for racial equality and equity. I do not, however, support and sanction the riots and violence that some of the protests have turned into. The riots negatively affect the view of the Black community at large and that is not something that we want. However, you must also understand how the Black Community must feel.

There is a deep-seated divide that has originated since the antiquity of the forced African immigration to the U.S. From that point on, the Black Community has suffered from systematic and de facto inequality that has disenfranchised the Black Community at large. The disenfranchised suffered from political, social and economic downturns that negatively affected the Black community.

These issues perpetuated by the poorly established justice system served to boil the frustration and animosity police, politicians and others of different races. Without political recourse and reform, it is understandable to see why the riots occur. We feel as though we are left with no option but to commit violence so that our voices can be heard.

I am by no means sanctioning and promoting violence. I want to make this abundantly clear. I think that we need to stand together as a community to enact a greater change. I think we need to stand together despite creed or color. We need to stand together as human beings in order to prosecute those who have done wrong. We need to change the system so that we can have socioeconomic equity and equality. We must work together as one in order to do so.

In these trying times, do the right thing and take care of yourself and others.

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