I am nine timezones ahead of where I grew up, moved from and where most of my people are living. I have been here for almost exactly two years and I am also proud that I have made so many amazing friends here…a mix of US American, German and a smattering of friends from other countries….Georgia, Italy, Australia, Turkey, England, Serbia, and I know I am forgetting more.
All of this to say is that when I am going to bed, the world that I know continues on. In my sleep, news breaks all over the United States and when I have been waking up these past few days, my phone is flooded with new and heartbreaking info.
This morning I woke up to speeches made by a president that is unable to lead the nation, news of his photo op in front of a church right after tear gassing a peaceful protest to walk across the street to the church he has hardly gone into and hold up a bible that he hasn’t opened and clearly does not read or follow, news of riots across the US that show unrest, heartbreak, injustice, racial inequality and exposing racism which exists in a system built for it.
I have felt heavy all day from all of these pieces. Today I have been talking with my US American friends here to say…what can we do? Yes, I can educate myself, engage in conversations, speak my privilege out loud, donate money, contact my representatives but it still doesn’t feel like enough. Those of us over here feel helpless and achy about it all. I have been talking all day to German friends who are reading this news and wondering how the conversation can be here at the same time saying, “what the heck is happening over there?” I have been watching and reading and paying attention but still feeling a ways away.
There isn’t a quick fix. This has been decades in the making and I am only surprised that our black brothers and sisters haven’t been rioting all along. Silence is compliance and so I speak into that space but also wanting to make sure the right voices are heard.
May we continue to learn, engage, protest and have the hard conversations. I am sure there will be more discussion before the day is done.