Picture of Aboriginal flag. Black on top, red on bottom with yellow round circle in Centre.

Blak Bloggers: Misplaced Fright

By Anonymous/Worimi man ©

Stop pretending, stop deflecting. 

Start acting, start taking responsibility. 

Or, just stop ………….

The last two weeks have been draining. I couldn’t work out why all of a sudden in the space of a week seemingly everyone was looking to engage us for work. Then we realised … 

“Oh it’s reconciliation week coming up”. 

A week where Aboriginal rights, issues, and traumatic histories are thrust to the forefront. For a week.

 From a personal perspective though it’s fine. What our ancestors endured and the dispositions they were condemned to make anything I face today pale and incomparable. So it is what it is…. 

I take the window of opportunity to work hard and elevate the voices and opportunities of our young people so we can continue to build stronger generations of fortitude and virtue – never far from the 80,000 years of culture and strength that courses through us all. 

Then reality slaps me in the face. 

An unarmed George Floyd is killed by police for allegedly writing bad cheques (he wasn’t). Then bitterness returns. 

Bitterness resurfaces because since being in Melbourne I need to be honest this place is susceptible to at times being a pretentious echo chamber where I constantly hear of Indigenous this, First Nations that, RAP this, reconciliation that. But there’s a very pressing question that needs to be asked and answered honestly – what do you honestly see and feel when you look at a black man? 

Because I hear the discourse, I hear the political unpacking and dissecting and analysing on Twitter or panels. Even people who claim they support me I can’t help but ask. 

Where were you when I had to wrestle a blade out of my loved one’s hand? Where were you when I had to mediate with officers when my brother’s face was in the pavement? Where were you when I slept on the floor because people at home needed my bed more than me. – More so, explain to me why when I needed a place to stay before moving down my inbox was empty but whenever you need someone to support you you’ve ‘got my back’ and ‘support me’. But don’t even dare to step into my world even though I’ve worked hard to live in yours?

Because all this bullshit is exactly that…. Bullshit. All your systems change, all your social equity lunches and panels are gammin. Because the follow-through isn’t there. So as long as you view black and native people anywhere in the world as a cause to solve, and communities where it is a “help us, help you” situation. Knees will always be in our face, cars will always creep slow, and charges will always be acquitted. 

And you know why? Because our communities aren’t the problem. Your systems are and they don’t change. Because you don’t actually change them – Despite claiming to. 

Stop talking to us, and start talking to police. Stop trying to include us in discussions and start having them with judicial systems. Stop asking us for more and more input and start acting on what we’ve already told you. Have honest conversations with your family and friends. We can’t make you understand places you don’t tread, or people you won’t talk to – Outside a political scope. 

I think you’re scared…… But its misplaced fright, because you’re scared in offices and cafes. Our people are scared whenever we hear that knock, hear that engine slowing down, or those flashing lights wake us up. 

This piece is part of Blak Bloggers, a pilot program as part of YIRRAMBOI’s Resilience in Isolation, supporting First Nations to keep creative during physical-distancing.