This week in pictures will not be a stream of life's little pleasures like it usually is. I'm emotionally exhausted. I didn't take pictures. I didn't write much. I've been too sad to do much of anything. Everything just seemed trivial after the tragedies that have taken place over the last week.
I work in social media, so to say that I've been inundated with news, opinions, fears and outrage is an understatement. It's been a lot to process. Just when I was wrapping my brain around what happened to Alton Sterling, Philando Castile was shot five times in his car in front of his girlfriend and her 4 year old daughter. I watched both videos in horror and disbelief.
I purposely keep away from videos of people fighting, getting hurt or killed. I'm an empath who will drown into depths of sorrow if I witness anyone physically suffering. I do everything in my power to bypass these kind of tragedies for my own sanity. I read about it and I stay informed but I do not want to be part of today's tragedy porn culture. I do not want to contribute to the dehumanization of black men, which is exactly what these videos do. Yes, we need to see the truth. But at the same time it's damaging, and contributes to viewer desensitization and apathy. If we see it enough, we stop caring. Social media being what it is did not allow me to see escape the videos of these men dying. I saw it.
As if things were not devastating enough, five police officers were killed in Dallas during what was supposed to be a peaceful protest. I cried. I felt anger, disappointment, hurt, confusion and sadness. I worry for my son. This is the world he's growing up in. A complicated world where people are judged and persecuted because of their skin color, religion and, in this case, their profession.
I felt extremely hopeless this past week. I looked to Diamond Reynold's testimonies for strength and hope, as I shared videos from people whose voices needed to be heard. We all need to speak up. I'm trying my best to get out of these feelings of hopelessness. To be honest, it's hard right now. I'm trying little by little to get back to the enthusiasm I felt just two weeks ago.
I encourage all of you to say something. Even if you don't know what to say or if you're still processing what has happened. We must unite in order to make a change.