Ok so this may sound like complete bull, but in the 3rd grade I stopped saying the “Pledge of Allegiance”( this is the only time I will give it the respect of being capitalized). No, it’s not because I felt like my people were oppressed and I understood the injustices we were facing. At 8 yrs. old I didn’t understand that shit, I just knew I didn’t mean what I was saying. I always heard say what you mean and mean what you say. If you know me this was definitely the mantra I lived by (as I’ve gotten older I’ve learned to dial it back a bit).
This development was around the same time my parents had me learn the Martin Luther King Jr. “I Have a Dream” speech by heart. I had to practice it day in and day out to perform it at church, oratorical contest you name it, I did it. Once you start to repeat something over and over it starts to resonate with you. As I recited it over and over I began to sympathise with the speech. I had no personal connection to it because at 8 yrs. old I was oblivious to racial issues; however I knew that it must’ve sucked to grow up black in the 60s. I used to think damn they had it rough but I’m grateful we’re past that in the 90s -__-! As I matured and grew and witnessed firsthand my sympathy turned into empathy and it’s crazy to me that this is actually still a thing.
I was privileged enough to go to a majority black private school where I was taught about Black History. I was privileged to have a father, who at times didn’t like to answer questions to his 8 yr. old inquisitive daughter about his revolutionary days in Grenada, who shared his experience, literally fighting for what he believed no matter the consequence. My parents inadvertently bestowed in me the ability to make a decision, stick with it, and fight for it; if it’s something I felt passionate about. This was at 8! As I’ve gotten older my reasons for not saying it have grown and I’m more adamant about not reciting this declaration.
The pledge of allegiance is symbolic of patriotism for one’s country and honestly I was never proud to be an American. Whenever someone asked me where I was from or where I was born my answer was always Grenada (or England), because in actuality I didn’t want to be from here regardless of my reasons at that point.
What is there to be patriotic about?
The very act of reciting the pledge of allegiance is religious from your mannerism to the respect that you give the words:
You remove your hat from your head, you stand at attention, and you place your hand over you heart as you make a bold statement showing your utter loyalty and appreciation to a country who’s forefather’s paved the way for it to be the way it is. I’m not proud of the way that it is so why would I declare that shit?
The very act of putting your hand over your heart is symbolic. The heart pumps blood and creates oxygen it sustains our being. No heart, No blood, no life. Why in God’s green earth would I every say that my love for AMERICA runs so deep in my heart that it’s the reason I breathe? Why?
I’m just tired of putting hash tags before a persons name. I’m tired of legitimately having dreams about my brother being killed by cops and waking up rushing to his room to see if it was true or not ( This has happened like 4x). I’m tired of being afraid for my whenever my brother is out and doesn’t come home till late. I’m tired of worrying if my church friends, who fit a certain profile could be gunned down because of their looks.
I’M JUST TIRED!!!
America is not great and if this is what it take to “Make America Great Again” Trump deserves to be president.