Back to Blog

We Can't

Rev. Daniel Humbert responds to the travesties that have continued to be committed against the African American population.

I was born into privilege. I didn't ask for it. I didn't seek it. I didn't even know I had it for a long time. The privilege I share is shared by many. It doesn't mean my life was easy or that I got everything I ever wanted or that I didn't have to work to earn my comforts. It does mean, however, that my privilege has never caused me to need to consider how my race or ethnicity or gender or sexuality will be considered by others. I've never had to wonder if others will look down upon me or think less of me. I've never had to wonder if someone will think I'm shoplifting or suspicious. I've never had someone "think I looked like a...." I've never had to wonder if I didn't belong because of my race, ethnicity, gender or sexuality.

More cognitively, my privilege never caused me to have any of these problems with which my African American sisters and brothers are struggling. I've never had to say, "I can't" like my sisters and brothers are having to claim, "we can't!"


George Floyd

We can't breathe (George Floyd).
We can’t go jogging (Amaud Arbery).
We can’t relax in the comfort of our own homes (Bothem Jean and Atatiana Jefferson).
We can't ask for help after being in a car crash (Jonathan Ferrell and Renisha McBride).
We can't have a cellphone (Stephon Clark).
We can't leave a party to get to safety (Jordan Edwards).
We can't play loud music (Jordan Davis).
We can’t sell CD's (Alton Sterling).
We can’t sleep (Aiyana Jones)
We can’t walk from the corner store (Mike Brown).
We can’t play cops and robbers (Tamir Rice).
We can’t go to church (Clementa C. Pinckney, Cynthia Marie Graham Hurd, Susie Jackson, Ethel Lee Lance, Depayne Middleton, Tywanza Sanders, Daniel L. Simmons, Sharonda Coleman-Singleton, Myra Thompson).
We can’t walk home with Skittles (Trayvon Martin).
We can’t hold a hair brush while leaving our own bachelor party (Sean Bell).
We can’t party on New Years (Oscar Grant).
We can’t get a normal traffic ticket (Sandra Bland).
We can’t lawfully carry a weapon (Philando Castile).
We can't break down on a public road with car problems (Corey Jones).
We can’t shop at Walmart (John Crawford) .
We can’t have a disabled vehicle (Terrence Crutcher).
We can’t read a book in our own car (Keith Scott).
We can’t be a 10 yr old walking with our grandfather (Clifford Glover).
We can’t decorate for a party (Claude Reese).
We can’t ask a cop a question (Randy Evans).
We can’t cash our check in peace (Yvonne Smallwood).
We can’t take out our wallet (Amadou Diallo).
We can’t run (Walter Scott).
We can’t breathe (Eric Garner).
We can’t live (Freddie Gray).

If you are privileged as I am privileged, then do something about these injustices. Say something. Stand up for what is right and just and true. This can't continue. Our collective sin is literally killing people and hatred is infesting our relationships.

For me, here's what "we can't do." We can't tolerate acceptance of such behavior or remain silent in such travesty. We can't!

Posted by Alyssa Robinson at 10:47 AM

Download Our App

Download the TMUMC app to connect more deeply on Sunday mornings. Use the app to take worship notes, check the calendar, watch the latest sermons, give, read stories, and more.