Town Square, June 3, 2020

Dorchester Banner/Dave Ryan
This woman took a photo of Saturday’s demonstration in Cambridge against police brutality. National and local events prompted an outpouring of emotions and opinions from readers.

Town Square is an opinion column to which readers can submit their views. As a true community newspaper, we’re always looking for ways to include local thought and pertinent viewpoints. This column is a way to share those thoughts. Civility and fair comment will always prevail.

STRESS OF BEING A BLACK PARENT: Just reflecting on the recent news of yet another black man’s life lost because of the color of his skin. You know, I get up almost every morning for my 6 a.m. walk and sometimes my walking route leads me down Md. 16 and all the way down Race Street up to Popular Street.
I take that walk with not one care in the world all by myself. Well the other day my black teenage son said, “Mom, I’m going to walk to Sandy Hill to meet up with some of the guys to do some football drills.” That walk I take in the mornings is similar to the walk he would have to take to get to his destination.
It was about 3 p.m. or so, but my nerves were so bad thinking about him taking this walk by himself. He was dressed to go work out with a bookbag on his back and his cleats hanging from it. However, I thought that his appearance could threaten or anger someone or that he could fit a description which could cause him not to make it back home.
I texted him frantically, asking, “Did you make it there?” and he replied later, “Of course, yes Mom, my bad for not letting you know.”
Then yesterday, my nephew came to pick him up in his new car along with two other friends to go play some ball. Once again my nerves are bad just thinking they could be stopped for some bogus reason and then hit with the famous, “I smell weed” bull crap and subjected to a car search or harassment just because of the color of their skin. Being a parent can sometimes be a stressful job, but being a parent of black sons causes a different level of daily stress.

PRIVILEGE: I really try to believe that some people are just unaware of the privilege that race can give you and that they aren’t filled with unnecessary hate. There is so much racism in this world, from white missing children getting more media attention than black missing children, to the limited roles in movies and television available for black individuals, to how individuals are treated based on their appearance.
It may not be blatant racism, but it is indirectly there. I can’t believe that this is still our world and this is the world that my son has to grow up in.
I used to be one of those people that thought since I wasn’t racist, I had done my part. I realize now that is not true…we all must speak out against this. People are being murdered in broad daylight for no reason. In order for there to be lasting change, we all need to recognize our privilege, our faults, and stand up for all of the injustice that is happening.
We have come far but we have far left to go. We have to do better.

GOOD WHITE PEOPLE: I understand this has been a tough week and everyone is upset with the killing of the man. Yes, it hurts to look at it, but come on people, we can’t down all white people.
There are some good white people in this world, just like it’s some bad black people in this world. Some people take some things too far. I have white friends and I would not trade them for the world. So when you speak on it, don’t down all white people.

CAN DO BOTH: It’s ok to support law enforcement and condemn officers who abuse their power.

SADNESS AND ANGER: Words cannot describe how horrific the events that are taking place in regards to police brutality and all the innocent people that are now being affected. It is our differences that I value that bring us together. It is our source of strength.
I too am seeing the news coverage and the violence associated with the recent protests. I respect peaceful protesting and admire those who go out and stand up for those who have been hurt.
This is our home and our community is strengthened by our awareness and diversity. I am here with you all and want peace and safety to be with you and your family.

SCARED FOR SONS: I’m not scared for myself as a black man. What i’m worried about is the two black sons I have to raise and prepare for this world. I’m going to keep it all the way real. not sugar coating anything.
SAD WORLD: I’m worried about my husband and he’s a cop. He’s always wanting to go running late at night since it’s cooler out and I won’t let him. He likes to run with his hood up and headphones in. You know Karen will be the first one to call in, big black guy with hood up running from someone. It’s a sad world we live in.

PROTESTS: It takes a lot to put yourself out there for something you believe in. Not everyone is doing that. I have respect for those who get up and want to try to make proactive, positive change rather be thumb warriors.

TO BLACK LIVES MATTER: All lives matter.

YES, BUT…: Yes they do. Just like all cancers can kill you, but we only highlight certain ones. For example, October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Do other cancers kill people during that month? Yes. Do those deaths mean less? No, Of course not. But for one month, we want the spotlight on breasts.
All lives matter. But people of color, black men in particular, are murdered far more often than any other group. We want to use this time to draw attention to the number of murders by police officers against this group. All people don’t face the daily assault against their personage just because of their skin color.

Town Square – your public forum – is moderated by Dorchester Banner Editor Dave Ryan. Email your comments to dryan@newszap.com.