As I write this, I am not 100% aware of all of the details surrounding the stabbing incident at my alma mater, UT-Austin. What I have become aware of is the suspect in custody is a Black. I cannot lie, that hurt. Let me let some of y’all in on a little secret. When tragedies happen, like the one that happened today, Black people are on the edge of their seats HOPING AND PRAYING that the suspect isn’t Black.
Apparently white folks commit something like 64% of mass shootings any way, so the odds are in our favor, right? WRONG! As Black people we know that anything that our fellow skin folk do, is attributed to all of us. White people don’t live with that burden.
Today, we learned that a member of the Black community was the perpetrator in a heinous crime. He was a member of a community that makes up less than 5% of the entire UT community, so I know this one hit home for a lot of them. As if there are enough microagressions aimed towards Black men on predominantly white college campuses, now this is just adds one more thing (during finals at that).
This saddens me. This saddens our community. So to those of you on the outside of our community, let us heal! Let students heal. People of color are not your emotional labor wells (regardless of what Heineken wants you to believe). Here are three things no one wants to hear right now:
- Your generalized and stereotypical questions: This is not your time to ask your token Black friend if they knew the suspect. If that was your go to text or question when you saw the victim’s image or picture, just shut up. Yes, the Black community is small but you don’t go asking all of your white friends in if they knew Dillon Roof, do you?
- Your assertion that guns solve problems: UT is a concealed carry institution. This means guns are on campus. From my understanding, the stabbing happened outside in an area that you are allowed to have a concealed gun—Your cowboy super hero did not ride up on his horse, draw a gun, and apprehend the suspect. So again, shut up. This isn’t the time for your political commentary discussing something that is already in effect.
- To pray about it: Yes, this is an option. I’m a spiritual person, I agree prayer changes and maybe this kid did have some “demons”. But I also have degrees in Psychology and Education Administration so I believe in the power of proper counseling and student support. I read this kid was a Biology major, that shit ain’t easy. Hell, my dreams of medical school went out of the window after taking a biology class. What I’m seeing is a biology major, during finals who had troubles managing stress and conflict. This is NOT an excuse. This is NOT diminishing or condoning the behavior. This is an acknowledgment that our community isn’t one that is always proactive when it comes to our mental health. If your only response to a grieving friend of classmate is “pray about it”–you know what to do SHUT UP. This student may not have any mental health issues, but you reading this might. If this incident is weighing heavily on your heart PLEASE SEEK HELP. Contact CMHC https://cmhc.utexas.edu/contactcmhc.html
This is not an easy time for the UT community as a whole, my heart can’t even fathom what the close knit Black community feels today. Hopefully, this post isn’t seen as ill timed or ill intentioned. The Master Mommy Blog is my space to process and decompress some of my thoughts and emotions, so I turned to the keyboard for my own selfish reasons.
If you have any resources you’d like to share in the comment PLEASE DO!
I acknowledge that this moment is not about me and will end my post by taking my own advice and shutting up.
Read the original Story here