Isn’t he a man, too?
Isn’t he a human being worthy of love?
But we forget that.
How quick we are to hate what we don’t understand. And we don’t understand what led one man to kneel on the neck of another for nine whole minutes.
So when I heard the news, I didn’t know what to think.
It’s was a creeping embodiment of a silent terror. A floating anxiety.
Because I don’t know either one of these men.
But, in a way, I do.
Because I know myself.
And I know the range of awful emotions I’ve experienced in my life are within the range that those two men experienced on that awful day.
And it sickens me that a life taken away leads to another life taken away. One is gone, and one is in jail.
It seems like a massive loss for something that never needed to get to that point.
Yet it gets to that point every single day.
And it’s traumatic.
And utterly avoidable.
If only we stopped taking a one-sided, political view. And started taking a multi-sided mental health view.
That won’t solve all of our problems, of course.
But the work we do on ourselves when we aim to better our mental health is the work we could do together, as a society, if we aimed to understand our collective mental health.
We are all bound up in this together.
That’s precisely why these events are traumatic, no matter what side you take.
And I hope you won’t take a side.
I hope you’ll choose the third path.
I hope you’ll see George Floyd and Derek Chauvin.
I hope you’ll glimpse their humanity.
And I hope you’ll remember this feeling that you have right now.
Not everyone will feel what I feel about this tragic breakdown in humanity.
But we all feel something.
And if we led with that, more with our hearts and less with our politics, we’d find ourselves in these two men–and we’d realize how redemptive that could actually be.
We all have our struggles. What we need more than ever is to be courageous enough to understand the mental health of the people we don’t understand.
Please carry this with you. Let me know what you thought of this, whatever it brought up in you.
Have a good rest of your day, and please take care of yourself,