Let’s face it, it hasn’t been easy to be black in America. Unfortunately, it’s still the case in 2016. With police brutality, institutionalized slavery and now a hateful presidential election, black parents are struggling to make sense of all of this to their children.
One parent, Gabrielle Union tells Essence she and husband Dwyane Wade are too teaching their children how to maneuver in today’s racially harsh environment.
“Our conversations about race and police are constant,” she says. “And even if society didn’t give us hashtags every day to prompt us we’d be talking about it.”
Union shared a story about one night, her teenage boys wanted to go out to a neighborhood basketball court. She told the boys no since it was after dark but the boys persuaded Wade to allow them to go. This sent Union in a panic as she reminisce the Trayvon Martin killing and doesn’t trust, “neighbors to not see our teenage boys, our tall teenage boys as children and not as threats to ‘put down’.”
“I panic and then I get him to panic. We get in the car and we go track them down,” she said. “We told them to stop where they were. If they were under a street light, to just stay there. And as we’re in route to them there are cop cars coming from [their direction]. And it wasn’t even the cops that I was necessarily afraid of. Our neighbors have personal security too and in a stand your ground state, an open carry state, they’ll shoot you first and get off later.”
We know all parents, regardless of race, worry about their children’s safety when they leave the house. However, black families have to take extra precaution no matter how much money you have.