Last year, my homegirl Blu and I were sitting in some coffee shop pondering over philosophies and petty things. We did what many 20-somethings do at that age: tried to envision our futures. We glided through the normal prompts of marriage, and careers, and goals, until inevitably, we arrived at children. Blu wasn't sure if she wanted kids; I felt that I did. Despite both of our inclinations we agreed on one thing: we didn't want to raise them here.
Although we lived in the self-proclaimed "greatest democracy in the world" we had been made painfully aware that liberty and justice were not for all in America. We didn't want to endure the unnatural devastation of seeing our legacy snuffed before our very eyes. Or, should they live, watch them grow to shrink themselves into the box society would place them in. Or witness them one day look at their own skin with the disdain that others did. Or realize that the first time they were profiled, excluded, or called a "nigger" would be as common as their first kiss or part in a school play. We considered all of these things that would chip away at the lives of our hypothetical kids, and fell on two different sides of the same coin. Casually moving through these musings with the smoothness of a warm earl grey, we reached the question
Where in the world can a Black child be safe?
Fast forward a couple months when someone else's child was murdered with no consequence. I do not remember which person was forced into martyrdom and I am ashamed and saddened by that sentence. But I saw their mother on TV, battling that unnatural devastation as it took root in the lump in her throat, and I wrote a poem titled "My Son". I later developed an idea for a short film based on the poem and presented it to Atuanya Priester, a local videographer. He built off of the idea and from there we created "Black Coffee". And I still wonder what I can do to escape this bitter cup.