The murders of George Floyd and Ahmaud Aubrey have unleashed fury and a wave of protests across the country, and abroad, in response to the killings of Black people. As I watch the revolution take place, I am proud to see Black people and our supporters intentionally be both radical and righteous in the face of hate and injustices. However, my only concern is that we keep that same energy in regards to the murder of Breonna Taylor.
Breonna Taylor is the 26-year-old EMT from Louisville, Kentucky that was gunned down by police. On March 13, Shortly after midnight, Louisville police, shot Breonna eight times. The police were executing a search warrant and used a battering ram to crash into the apartment of Breonna Taylor. The confrontation between police and Breonna never should have transpired because not only were the police at the wrong address, but the person they were looking to arrest was already in police custody.
Although it is hard not to see that Breonna’s death is a result of negligence on behalf of the police, some accuse Breonna of greeting police with aggression. However, my question is, how would you react to having your door kicked in at midnight? What would be the reaction of any law-abiding citizen in Breonna’s predicament? Personally, I would have been furious, and those officers would have been greeted with the same pissed off Black woman energy that Breonna probably had at that moment.
On April 27, Breonna’s family filed a “wrongful death, excessive force, and gross negligence,” lawsuit against the police officers involved. Breonna’s family also request answers to why Louisville police officers were so quick to fire. The officers on the scene fired more than 20 rounds during their encounter with Breonna. In an interview with The Washington Post, Breonna Taylor’s mother, Tamika Palmer, stated, “Not one person has talked to me. Not one person has explained anything to me,” Why? Is the silence we are experiencing in regards to Breonna’s death a louder statement that needs to be addressed also?
Today is what would have been Breonna’s 27th birthday, she should have risen with power, eager to start a new chapter in life as she began her 27th trip around the Sun. She should have been greeted by Happy Birthday text messages, trips down memory lane, and other social media memes and tributes from her loved ones. She should have been preparing for an epic birthday celebration that included a fashion and beauty slay. However, today she celebrates her first birthday with our ancestors and women like Sandra Bland and Korryn Gaines, who met similar fate due to hate.
We must etch Breonna’s name in our hearts and remain just as committed to acquiring justice for Breonna as we are for the lives of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, and our black men. It is time to #pullup in honor and support of black women with the same energy we do for black men because the trauma and hate that pledges black people have no gender boundaries or preferences. When racist hunt, they see all black people as a fair game.
Now, it is not the time to devalue black women as many have traditionally. We must demand justice for all, now. In the words of Breonna’s mother, “I want justice for her. I want them to say her name. There’s no reason Breonna should be dead at all.”
REST IN POWER QUEEN!