We Say Their Names

We Say Their Names May 17, 2022

It’s not enough to not be racist
I must be anti-racist in the face of
This continued oppression
Red lines keep Black Americans out of the banks and burbs
While white rocks keep them behind bars
You heard of white men co-opting Black culture
Like vultures picking the bones of the bodies white officers laid down in the streets

These streets, where economic disparity widens by the hour
This hour, a Black mother is powerless
To assuage the hunger of her two Black sons
With no father, serving a life sentence for running drugs
So don’t tell me racism is a thing of the past
It’s built into the fabric of this system
Passed down from generation to generation
A nation built on the backs of the Black slave
Stolen from the tribes and nations that came before us
The US, headed for ashes
Faces ashen until we acknowledge and rectify our past
The US, all of us, guilty of these sins
Egregious in their nature
But not outside our nature to change
Change the system, change the game
Equality mixed with equity, indefinitely
Rising like a Phoenix from the ashes of the enslaved
We hear their cry
We say their names
Emmitt, Philandro, Tamir
Breonna, George, Aiyana
We tell their story
We say their names

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About Matthew J. Distefano
Matthew J. Distefano is an author, blogger, podcaster, and social worker. He lives in Northern California with his wife and daughter You can read more about the author here.
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