Human skin may be our largest organ, but the surface layer of our skin, the epidermis is only 2-3 mm thick (that’s approximately 0.10 inches).
Skin color is caused by melanin, a pigment produced in the epidermis to protect us from the sun’s UV rays. Darker skinned people produce more numerous and deeper-colored melanin particles. Just some cells...
Our skin color is the thinnest part of who we are…
Not flesh and blood,
Not belief and faith,
Not heart and soul,
Melanin and the most superficial part of our physical body.
How we’re grouped…
Melanin and less than 0.10 inches.
We’ve done ourselves a great injustice to label each other by the least of what we are made of.
To say that “All Lives Matter” is to say that white people haven’t made a grievous historical error. When granted power, privilege, and opportunity, we didn’t use it to say, “Black is beautiful.” “Black has meant struggle.” “Maybe I’m kind of an asshole.”
We used it to say, “I’m not racist.” “It wasn’t me.” “I didn’t own slaves, what do you want me to do?”
It’s not just poorly trained or shitty cops.
There wasn’t a time when all white Americans came together and made the right choice.
We have failed over and over again.
The end of slavery was forced on American society.
The Black vote was forced on American society.
Desegregation was forced on American society.
We haven’t done the right thing.
We haven’t paused to ask the questions.
Why are there so many black men in jail?
Why is it so much harder for a black woman to get a job?
Why are so many young black men getting shot?
By each other?
By the cops?
How do I participate in this?
Because race is not behind us.
Because we still live in the world of melanin and less than 0.10 inches.
My whole life society has granted me the benefit of the doubt.
Opened doors for me.
Held my hand.
Because of Melanin and less than 0.10 inches.
I wish to use that privilege to open doors for others.
To hold out my hand to those in struggle.
To say out loud:
You’ve had it harder.
I’m so sorry.
I’ll try to be better.
Image: Ryan Scott Bomberger