For so long, the America Dream has benefitted a select few. If you’re from the wrong family, if you’re the wrong color, if you practice the wrong religion, or if you don’t fit into the perfect, predetermined mold, move along. There’s nothing for you here.
America has never been the place it claimed to be. Not everyone gets a nice house, with a yard and picket fence. The white picket fences surrounding those big houses are here, but only for those maintaining a certain percentage of melanin in their skin.
When others have conquered their way in, through floods of crushing oppression and double standards — even when they feel they’ve achieved the American Dream, they don’t get the same dream others enjoy. They can’t walk around their hard-earned neighborhood without a reason, without the accompaniment of their family, without the constant reminder they don’t belong. In their own communities, but especially in others, they must remain visibly benign at all times.
Immigrants dream of star-spangled banners flying over amber waves of grain. They risk their lives for the smallest chance of achieving a small piece of the American pie, so they can share it with their less-fortunate families. But the land they find is a waste. It’s riddled with bullet holes, littered with the lives lost to systemic racism, and crumbling under the weight of civil unrest created by years of injustice.
As we speak, America is burning. But what did we expect?
Decades of turning a blind eye, innumerable cases of justified murder, and the silence of the masses brought us here. Hoping things will work out for the best was the fuel for this fire. When we bury our heads in the sand, it doesn’t stop the war from raging around us. Slowly, these flightless birds are uncovering their heads from the sands of indifference and finding their voices.
America was built as a land of freedom, not for the privileged few, but for all. We find ourselves at a pivotal crux in the quest for the vision of an equal America — one where every person is respected and loved as family. The rest of the world has chosen their side, millions across our nation have merged into a unified front, and like a phoenix from the ashes, America could reemerge the country it’s always claimed to be.