If you haven’t heard of Ahmaud Arbery, it is probably because with the height of COVID-19 his tragic death took near ten weeks, (73 days to be exact) for his story to be heard.
On Feb. 23, Ahmaud Arbery decided to do what many of us do every day, go for a run. What he didn’t know was that his quick exercise regime would turn into a fight for his life as two armed white men hunted him down claiming 'he “looked” like a “suspect” in a string of local break-ins.'
Garnering national news after video footage surface, many activists and civil rights organizations are demanding arrests be made with a fair trial to follow. According to NBC News, “Police have identified the two men who chased him as Brunswick resident Gregory McMichael, 64, and his son, Travis McMichael, 34. Neither has been arrested or charged, and the investigation is ongoing.” Other news outlets have reported, this has been because of Gregory McMichael’s ties to law enforcement in the area.
Out of everything reported those last two sentences stung the most. Why is it that from Trayvon Martin to Tamir Rice, we have heard this story far too many times to count and each and every time we see the same scenario play out. Each time families have to beg for justice even though the parties at fault have been identified. Each family has to sit through months of agonizing pain to if nothing else, bring awareness and let the death of a loved one who passed not be left in vain.
I am tired of signing petitions, I am tired to calling senators, I am tired of African Americans doing everything in our power to prove our mere existence is not a threat. Why is it people can storm state building with AKs, grenades, and a plethora of ammunition but an innocent unarmed black man can’t go for a run?
If I was Ahmaud, would I matter? And if so, then why doesn’t he?