(Unedited) Last night, in the 30-Day Haiku Challenge, a sista posted a haiku for Korryn Gaines—a Black mother killed by police. I keep it simple and leave it at a short statement of a Black mother killed by police, because the police account of what happened does not sit well with me. My soul says NO! There must be more to the story than meets the eye. There is more to the story than this sista barricading herself in her apartment.
So, last night I saw the haiku for Korryn, but I didn’t want to see it. Tried to scroll past it. It was almost like it was in my periphery, oh but it was very much so, front and center. I saw the hashtags [#KorrynGaines #sayhername] starting and I didn’t want to see them either…
Korryn Gaines regularly documented police violence before she was killed. Police show up at her house for a lame charge. Olivia A. Cole (@RantingOwl)
I’m currently reading a book, Radical Dharma– it is by far one of the best books I’ve read in a long time. The book affirms how I approach trauma and healing, not only as a therapist, but as a Black womon. Today I’ll read further and go deeper into this book because right now, this Black womon getting dead, and her child being shot in this exchange with the police, does not feel good and it angers me.
Anger is a natural reaction to being wronged by someone else and it’s a way of communicating that sense of injustice. But society tells us anger is dangerous and we should hide it. PsyBlog
I work a lot with anger in my practice with my students. I think anger gets a bad rap. We are taught, especially as Black people, even moreso as Black gyrls/womyn, to suppress it; but, why suppress something that is nature and exist on the spectrum of emotions? Instead more focus should be on how we engage anger, because anger can also be a motivator. Though, as Black people, we often don’t have the luxury to be angry without negative consequences. Anger, this natural emotion, is not a privilege for us. Our authentic possession and expression of anger, can mean life or death for us.
Moreover, anger is a secondary emotion. It is important to get underneath the anger to address the source. In Radical Dharma L.R. Owens says, “We have to honor anger, but we do not have to ground ourselves in anger as a momentum to create change.” I agree wholeheartedly.
We must ground ourselves in LOVE, whereas we deconstruct and disrupt anger with LOVE. And love is not minimized to butterflies, sparkles, rainbows and tutus. Love is also, speaking out, active protest, being a cultural worker…aligning with your passion/life’s work…etc. Love is also movement building and doing our part in creating change!
This is also a new moon in the sign of Leo, which calls us to create and to get out of our own way. It calls us to stand in our brilliance.
I say without equivocation that Korryn Gaines should not have been killed. Over traffic fines/court? My goodness this country is sick. Imani Perry (@imaniperry)
Korryn Gaines, I speak your name and I honor your brilliance today! Today Black people, let’s allow ourselves to “feel” and to exist in our brilliance.