No victim is to blame for the violence done to them.
The Chauvin trial that gripped Minnesota and people across the world, is over, but there was another death of a young black man. Maybe in another year it wouldn’t have been so enraging, and yet the rage is necessary and has continued something that started with George Floyd’s death. Maybe it could be called outrage. The rage is coming out; moving; growing.
I waited to write about Daunte Wright until I was ready. I became ready when my mother’s heart broke open as I related to this story.
I related to a boy and his mother. At the first sign of trouble, Daunte called his mom. He called to tell her he believed police were stopping him for having an air freshener hanging in the windshield. That got to me. I thought, that’s a good boy, a boy well raised who calls his mom like that. A young boy. A scared boy. A practical boy.
I related to Katie Bryant, his aunt, when she said part of the reason she believed Wright started to struggle was the family’s move from Wisconsin to North Minneapolis when he was nine years old.
“Them relocating out of Wisconsin to North Minneapolis wasn’t the best thing for him because everybody knows how North Minneapolis is. It’s not a very good area to be raising children.” Bryant had once begged Wright to come and live with her in Wisconsin to “give him a better life” she told Insider.
I related when I heard Daunte Wright had learning disabilities and had struggled in three different high schools. Knowing that was the clincher.
So much of his story felt familiar, but I was particularly struck by his learning disabilities. It is a relatively new phenomenon that such disabilities are seen and responded to. I myself thought until recently that “special schools” carried a stigma that kids could have a hard time recovering from. If it was ever true, it is not true now. Even if there was nothing else special about them, the way they gentle the environment in which their students are held seems to allow greater learning and much beyond learning to take place. Compassion can grow there.
It is no accident that ACIM and ACOL both seek to dispel fear. Here, Jesus speaks of fear and compassion:
Each one of you would have compassion for a child tormented by nightmares. Each parent’s most fervent wish would be to tell a child truthfully there is no cause for fear. Age has not taken fear from any of you nor made your dream of life any less of a nightmare. Yet you spare few moments of compassion for yourself, and when such chance occurrences come about you quickly override compassion with practicality. While it makes sense to you to attempt to dispel a child’s nightmare, you see no way to dispel your own.
In Mirari, Mary told me:
My sister, we are all divine. We resist the notion of our divinity because of its association with power, not the opposite. And when there is an inkling of power, that a power flows through you, there is a response that is not one of elation or even thankfulness. It is not fear of the power, not fear of the world’s response to it, but a heavy weariness with the world’s fascination with, and misunderstanding of, true power.
The power of police departments, and all “systems” of power are being called into question here. Like the schools that assist the learning disabled, there is a gentling needed. We are all weary of the power that has been. This is the time of coming to understand true power, the power of love.
Speaking of that which is inconsistent with a benevolent universe, Jesus says:
You would think that this disparity would be divisive and extremely uncomfortable and even rage-producing for those still living in illusion. But it will be much more tempting to be divisive, uncomfortable and rage-producing for those living in the new. Many who observe the new from the house of illusion will still be able to deny what they see. Just think of how many saints and miracles you have heard of in the past without being moved to believe that they mean anything at all about the nature of who you are.
This is why no more time can be wasted and why so many are being called in the strongest manner it is possible to call them. It is only when what is observable is so widely evident that it can no longer be denied that changes of a large scale will begin to be seen.
Our denial is coming to an end.
Image copyright SWPA.Photography