If Mr. Zimmerman is not convicted, those of us who will be angered, pained, and frustrated will need to gird up our loins, to stand on “civility,” and to keep in our line of sight the “big-picture goals,” as Kymberly says in response to my friend Sonsyrea’s prayerful post on FB.
Speculation is spreading: There will be riots. I will pray that African Americans, in particular, will tap into a certain righteousness that is ours to claim. In our anger and frustration, we can get weary but we can’t linger there. Too much work has been done and there still is too much more to be done, too many children to love and teach and save, too many people to love and feed and respect and enjoy.
If we are outraged over the pending verdict, we can stand and march and protest and challenge injustice and inhumanity, but we cannot use violence. We have to re-direct our rage toward some uplifting, cleansing, progressive action -- civil, humane, spiritual, poetic -- be it in a private space or a public forum. We cannot use violence.
We will learn to own our citizenship, to claim it without shame or apology or heads hanging low, to know that we don't have to earn it or prove it.