The Jewish scholar Abraham Joshua Heschel called race prejudice “the maximum of hatred for the minimum of reason.” But if we’re all made “of one blood,” how can we despise and mistreat one another; for in so doing, we also hurt ourselves.
I cannot tell you what it means to be black, I was born with a white skin, but what I can talk about is what it is to be human.
I love, are you telling me black people can’t love, because they do.
I laugh, are you telling me black people can’t laugh, because they do.
I cry, I mourn, I rejoice, I run (not very well), I walk (a far better pace in life), I love dogs and cats, I love building things out of wood, I love gardening, I love reading (especially the Bible)…
But I also lie, I get angry, I swear, I am a poor father and a worse husband. I try my hardest to get fit and fail, I try to not eat chocolate for a week and end up eating it on the first day. I don’t like my belly, when I walk down the road I think to myself everyone is starting at my belly.
I want to be liked, appreciated, be a hero for my wife and daughters, there is so much more but this is not the place to tell all.
I wanted to describe myself because out in the world there are people who think like me, have the same fears and joys, the same desires and the same heart but when they walk down the road, they don’t think, “is my belly fat”, they walk down the road never knowing what will be said to them today. What hate will be spewed. What injury caused to their body, which can be healed, but the words we call out are much harder to be put right.
We clapped for the NHS and quite rightly so, there are brave men and women who walk in everyday to ensure we get well and stay well, but when we clapped did we clap only for the white staff, no of course not, we clapped for them all. Some have died serving us, I was sad for each and everyone, and maybe I was sadder for the dads because I’m one. I clapped for all staff in the NHS.
I started by saying, “we are all of one blood.” Black people across the USA are bleeding, I don’t want to bleed with them, I want to stop the bleeding. We all bleed and it is red. (Just an aside here but did you know that Charles R. Drew was a black surgeon who pioneered techniques for preserving blood plasma that saved countless lives during World War II?)
It is ironic that when we need a blood transfusion we don’t say, “can I have blood given by a white person.”
We are all of one blood, can we stop the bleeding and start healing this world one friendship at a time.