Coping with national tragedies
After the latest death of an unarmed black man, tensions are high throughout the nation. Here on the Coast, many are still trying to make sense of the incident and are posing the question of how to prevent similar situations in the future.
“The recent incident with Mr. Floyd has just reinforced some of the distrust that the black community has with law enforcement.” Sentiments felt by many after a video surfaced and went viral.
Curley Clark is the president of the Moss Point Jackson County NAACP. He says these incidents are always shocking, no matter where they happen. “One of the things I think people have forgotten is, they feel like racism is confined to the South. When the incident happened in Georgia everyone said oh yeah well that’s Georgia. When something happens in Mississippi, oh yeah that’s Mississippi. But when this incident happened in Minnesota it’s like oh wow. They get excited. Racism is racism whether it’s in Minnesota, Mississippi, or wherever.”
To help residents on the Coast cope with the current racial climate in the nation, 100 Men Hall Director Rachel Dangermond is offering an emotional outlet. “This Saturday we’re gonna have a listening booth. We’re gonna have six booths set up where they’re going to be 6-foot tables. We are at one end there’s gonna be a listener wearing a mask and people can drop by take a seat and express themselves, their emotions of what they’re feeling. We now have this situation where we have three people, three black people who have just been killed recently, just horrifyingly, and so there’s just this outrage and we want to be able to deal with it as a community.”
Clark says his message to anyone who finds themselves in a possible deadly situation is to get home safely. “I think for black people, especially our young people, they’re gonna have to realize that for whatever reason they’re not gonna be treated equally. We’re not there yet. We should be there yet but we’re not, even though it’s 2020. We’re not there yet. So our black people are going to have to be responsible for their actions and make sure they don’t put themselves in those types of situations where law-enforcement can take some type of excessive force against them.”