▲ A candle lit to show support for the protestors in Ferguson, Missouri. Photo courtesy Nailah Rivers
To the editor,
“It is better to light a candle that to curse the darkness” Eleanor Roosevelt.
There is so much going on in and around many major cities in the United States as a result of our justice systems failure to indict Officer Darren Wilson in the fatal shooting of Michael Brown. With my Facebook newsfeed exploding with articles of people protesting the outcome of this tragic situation, I couldn’t help but to feel some type of way about it and a few of my foreigner friends and acquaintances felt some type of way about it too. My thoughts were solely with the friends and family of Mike Brown; regardless of his failings and shortcomings, Michael Brown life was over and the person responsible for his death would not face any repercussions for his actions. Michael Brown would not have another chance to choose another path in life, he wouldn’t have an opportunity to go to college or be married or have children; at eighteen years old, his life was over.
▲ Maria Harris, who organized the vigil, holds a placard listing victims of police violence. Photo courtesy Nailah Rivers
So, when my friend and neighbor, Maria invited me to attend a candle lit vigil in support of the friends and family of Michael Brown, I knew I needed to stand in solidarity with her. We talked it over the night before and I realized a few things about communities like Michael Browns’: 1. They are failing to support young black men whose skin color already means there are cards stacked against them from the time they are born and 2. Unless we as a community rise up in awareness of our own responsibility in our communities, many more will continue to die, sadly in vain.
On tonight though, we wanted show our support in our own small way all the way in Korea. And so we met at the local McDonald’s and made a few signs and then walked to the City Hall area, candles and signs in hand, hopeful that like many of the protesters all over the United States uncomfortable, angry and distressed by failure to indict Officer Darren Wilson, that it’s not okay. We’re not okay with this.
Nailah Rivers, Jeju City
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