black lives matter

28 July, 1917

Posted on Updated on

How does on describe the scene and capture the emotions that envelope it? Charles stood there in awe. What started as one hundred black women, children and men, has now grown to a thousand. With notepad in hand he scribed quick visual descriptions of the solemn stone-faced marchers. Children and women led the march. In the distance muffled drums were heard. However, no one could see who was beating them. Not a soul spoke a word as the group past. Perhaps the signs said enough; Thou shall not kill, Make America safe for Democracy, 200,000 Black men fought for your liberty in the Civil War.

The patrons marching multiplied. This was apparently well organized. A sense of fear fell over Charles as he stood watching the children and women silently passed. Are they just going to march or break off into a riot? Who could blame them for being angry? Lynching and murders were out of  control. Charles was a reporter for the Times newspaper. Guilt gripped him as he reflected on how nonchalant he composed his reports. Death after death, lynching after lynching, he grew numb to the lack of humanity New York had shown these people. It wasn’t just a southern attitude. It was everywhere in America. And now, he stood looking at the faces of the families that were affected by the tragedies he reported. A single tear rolled down his cheek. The white dressed patrons turned into men dressed in dark suits beating muffled drums. These were the laborers, the men who went out and worked all day to provide a living for their families. They marched behind their children and women echoing their silence. He too knew the struggles of the times. It was a dog-eat-dog world, and if one was to survive they had to fight. But how do you fight for your family in a country that shows nothing but hatred. At some point the silence speaks louder than anything. And today, Charles witnessed the silent scream of a human race begging to be loved, begging for life.

Never in one hundred years will we forget this silent protest. The day the Black man said everything without saying anything.

Advertisements