When Genocide Turns to War

By Kristin Richardson Jordan

What happens when freedom is no longer up for debate?
When spines are stricken from bodies in a country consumed by hate
When death after death means even the patient can’t wait
When centuries of an undeclared state of emergency means there’s just no escape

What happens after breathing becomes a privilege?
And the future is you’re going to die anyway
What happens after legislative lies picket signs and poetry lines to white racism
What happens after justice just has no more to say

What happens when genocide has your back to the wall?
a gun in your face
after you’ve been beaten thus far
At some point would you not turn to war?
Would you not try to defend
who you are?

But when those in charge face the
people’s power
They justify excuse vilify and scowl
Act like all Blacks ought to be “like King”
Scream for all protest to be “peaceful”
Then don’t change a thing

So think before you blame
Before you criticize
Before you buy the police’s party line and the media’s lies
Before you call our Black bodies “animals” “thugs” “looters”
Before assuming we should die in vein and never shoot the shooters
Before you throw dirt on people fighting for their lives
Recognize. We’re facing genocide.

And this unnatural problem,
It will scream for solution.
For there will be more and more unrest,
Till we’re treated as human

(c) 2015 Kristin Richardson Jordan

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