My African French Husband, Racism and Collective Grief – In Memory of George Floyd and All Black Lives

My African French Husband, Racism and Collective Grief

In Memory of George Floyd and All Black Lives

Yasemin Isler

May 31 & Jun 4, 2020

My African born, French raised, husband was stopped more than once by police, both in the USA and in France, for simply driving while black. He was treated differently as a patient when he said he was African as opposed to when he said he was a French researcher (both were true). He refused to be called Dr because of his humility. He kept pushing for equal rights, peacefully, intellectually, from the heart, loving towards everyone, starting with education rights, for everyone, equally.

Nowhere on this earth is peace guaranteed carte blanche. The only way to guarantee real peace is with all members of society taking part in the betterment of the Whole Society. The earth is our body. No organ in the human body survives on its own outside of the body. And if any portion is deprived, cut off, the rest of the body, too, suffers. How are we as people and nations any different? 

Everyone is afraid. Most are hiding it. Police and military are afraid, too, by being human beings. And, they have guns, rifles, rubber bullets, pepper sprays/bullets, more muscles. That concerns me the most if they resort to these against unarmed people who peacefully protest. More lives can be lost or harmed again and again. Respect to those who kneeled in honor of George Floyd, black lives lost and walking with peaceful protestors. We need peace, calm and solidarity to calm and heal our hearts, bones, and souls. The peace and calm of the mighty powerful police will go a long way. 

Riots are the last resort for hopelessness and powerlessness. We don’t know the details of who has been sparking some of the destructive riots. If you have not been hiding in a cave, by now you have heard of the agitators and out of towner with ulterior motives mingling with the crowd of protestors. There are those who may be sparking destruction in the name of more sinister purposes. There are the peaceful people, the anguishes people may be blamed. 

Here are some things to ponder and do:

– Listen to all the news and all sides of the stories, before judging people on TV screens. 

– Practice empathy – Put yourself in the shoes of Black Americans. 

– Think twice when police or gendarme are using brute force to stop protestors how that must be feeling on the receiving end. If people continue protesting and rioting, think further what is really going on. Consider what has transpired all of this determination to persevere on wanting to be heard.  

– Keep sight of agitators as much as the ones who have felt oppressed for ages and want to be heard. 

– Think of what you are able to offer towards the Equity of human kind as one big whole.

– Do Not look the other way. Partake on bringing EQUITY and PEACE.

– Stop thinking you are special or even entitled and that it’s unfortunate that some others are not as fortunate.

– Let go of the thought that only others will figure this out. You can make a small difference and they all add up. 

400+ years of racism is the foundation of this country. Black lives being stolen over and over again. The poor not having the conveniences experienced by the economically privileged during Covid19. Covid19 hitting the brown communities more severely across the country because of lack of health care, insurance, equitable living that has been as a result of the systemic racism. and everything the last 400 years has brought on. 

Thinking that riots can never come to our home town is wishful, hopeful and can even be naïve. Pandemic of Covid19 combined with the ongoing pandemic of racism guarantees one thing. It is that we can no longer have a guarantee of peace for anyone or in any place any more, including in the hearts and minds of people. They are showing how deep the GAP is. Together they are calling everyone to AWAKEN and RESET to HEAL THE WHOLE BODY.

Grief comes in phases. 

Initial shock wears off at some point. We are in initial shock. As we grieve and as we bear witness. 
Many tears. Many voices. Many words. 
When the initial shock and the remembrances wear off, the griever may find the abundance of tears, words, helping hands, actions diminish strongly. When they are still strongly needed. 
Use your words now as your initial fuel and don’t stop there. 
Turn them into Real Palpable Impactful Powerful Actions. 
Stay aware when you get into the fatigue of empathy or stay inside the boundaries of sympathy. Refuel with Fierce Compassion and Continue. 
There is much work of Love left to do. 
Until all black lives reach the equality as all lives.  
And the indigenous. 
And each and every one who is marginalized. 
Stay in the marathon like you mean it. 

Our Lives are momentary, a 100 years if lucky. What is our Legacy? 

As humans, shouldn’t it be our duty to figure out what it means to be human and to companion each other, all of us, for better lives? 

Love with Power.
Act with Truth and Compassion.

Peace ✌️ ❤️ Love 
Yasemin Isler

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