I’ve been sitting in front of the monitor for about fifteen minutes trying to find something cogent and erudite to write about Renisha McBride and I really just can’t come up with anything. Partially it’s because I feel like any attempt to express outrage and shock is, in some way, appropriating the right of response from black people who might want to do so. I know that’s kind of silly in some respects, but it’s how I feel nonetheless; after all, nobody’s ever going to shoot me in the back of the head for being white. I don’t have any particular stakes that I have to worry about.
But nonetheless I think it’s important that I write something, if only because I’m white, and because I didn’t hear about this until the few segments of Black Twitter that I follow exploded over this story (as they were entirely right to do). I think it’s important that white people acknowledge this, and say it’s wrong, and say that laws that allow this to happen are bad laws. I think my friends who are black deserve that from me (and more, although to be honest I don’t know what more could be done in this instance – and it appears, not unfairly, that many black people don’t know what more could be done either, because it seems that regardless of anything else they’re still going to keep getting screwed over by laws and getting shot for no goddamn good reason).
But I think white people need to be reminded of this, every day. And if they whine about how black-on-white crime is never reported as intently or how black people don’t treat black-on-black crime seriously, then they also need to be smacked upside the head at least a little. And so I’m writing a post about a tragedy that should not have happened but did anyway when I don’t really have anything constructive to say about it: because I think it’s important to do that, if nothing else.