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Op Ed: Dear Son and Grandson

Nationwide — I usually leave political statements to my husband. He is decidedly passionate and articulate in his thoughts as he shares them prolifically on social media. However, today, I am moved to share my thoughts with you.

As the mother of a Black son and grandsons, I am fearful for their future. Why? The killing of Black men has become epidemic. It appears that those who are charged with protecting life can capriciously decide that especially, Black men, are a threat simply because their skin is Black. Now do not get me wrong, I firmly believe that the majority of law enforcement officers are honorable. It is just that I don’t know when the deviant officer my encounter my loved ones.

As the mother of a Black male, I had the responsibility to train him from a young age how to behave when he encounters an officer.  I do not think this is part of growing up White. When Andrew was living at home, I insisted in knowing where he was going and who he was with. I never slept until he came home. While I recognize that it is universal for a mother to be concerned about the wellbeing of her child, the concerns of a Black mother are different. The white mother worries about liquor or drug consumption. She worries about reckless driving or maybe attending a loud party. A Black mother has anxiety over whether the police will abuse or kill her son simply because her Black son is walking in a different neighborhood or park. She worries if a simple traffic stop will turn fatal.

The President has just declared war on the American people. Is America great? We will see if America is “woke.” Now the threat is not only against people of color, it is a threat against anyone who wants to exercise their constitutional right to protest. My son and my grandsons could exist in a military state.

As a Black mother I hope you will join with me to pray for our sons and our country. I want to breathe.

Submitted by Cheryl Hervey-Brown

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