I raised my children in Harlem. I counseled them on street awareness, helped them hone their spidey sense, taught them that whenever they saw trouble brewing, they should just move on—which my son wisely did on Saturday night. I used to consider our neighborhood not quite safe, but now I think perhaps my children have been safer here than elsewhere. Harlem is fairly gentrified these days, but when my children walk out the door, many people look like them, no one is trying to challenge their right to be here. It's true I can't ever count on my son getting a cab on a New York City street, or my husband for that matter, but these streets are theirs nonetheless, no one questions that. And if I really examine this more deeply, when it came to my son, I worried less about street crime than about cops mistaking my boy for a street criminal. Turns out the chances of that happening are greatly reduced in a mostly black neighborhood.
What the fuck is going on in this country right now? This race shit is exploding everywhere. I feel so powerless to protect my loved ones sometimes.
Never wonder why I pray.