Summer vacation - what a wonderful time to be a kid. Days filled with sunshine, sleeping late, meeting with friends, watching movies and for most kids riding your bike. This is a time when white parents experience a level of enjoyment that black parents are not afforded.
Black parents know that nationwide summer vacation signals a time of increased fear for their children. Black children do not have the luxury of carefree bike rides to enjoy the first day of summer vacation - they are even in their OWN NEIGHBORHOODS, their OWN STREETS seen as the enemy.
They are stopped, questioned, harassed & traumatized because their skin is a signal that they do not belong. For many black children this is the moment that their childhood innocence is shattered, the minute that their skin betrays them, the memory that triggers a lifetime of painful memories and fear.
I include below a few texts from earlier this morning so you can see what a "normal" day this was for both Lady Beezus & her son...
Just a few hours later, recounts her son's tramatization
People begin to respond and show support to and her family. I include some of her responses below as they illustrate her anger, sadness, frustration and the feeling of helplessness that comes with not being able to protect your child from these dangers that have nothing to do with them.