It was around 8:45 in the morning when I pulled my van into my employer's parking lot in Melville, a part of Long Island's Suffolk County. After parking my car I made my way into the long black building on that bright, almost cloudless day and proceeded to the company cafeteria. I was on a low-carbohydrate diet at the time, so I picked up 3 hot sausage patties and a large coffee, then with food in hand I headed downstairs to my cubicle in the Information Technology division. It was then about 9 o'clock. The date was September 11th, 2001.
This is an Open Letter from a Black Man to His Fellow Black People; it is meant to be Read by People of All Colors.
First off, Trayvon Martin did not deserve to die. Eleanor Bumpers did not deserve to die. Amadou Diallo did not deserve to die. Sean Bell did not deserve to die. Patrick Dorismond did not deserve to die. James Byrd, Jr. did not deserve to die. James Craig Anderson did not deserve to die. And there are others, so many others, who absolutely did not deserve to die simply because of the color of their skin. Let us honor them and commit ourselves to raising our collective game by changing the institutions and beliefs responsible for their deaths. The alternative is to surrender to hatred, mindless rage and senseless murder. But again, those are the things that people who give up tend to do, but we, as black people, have a history of not giving up.
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