August 27, 2014 was the worst and best birthday of my life. The night of that birthday I was furious. My face was stained with tears of frustration and pain at what had transpired in Ferguson just 18 days earlier. On August 9, Michael Brown was gunned down in the middle of the street. His body laid in the street for four hours.
My indignation to this unjust death began to give way to fear, however, because I had just turned 17. I was only one year younger than Mike Brown. That night my tears froze on my face as I no longer saw Mike Brown’s body lying in the street, but my own. I lost control of my fear, and I soon began to imagine the bodies of my older brother Danny and my younger brother Marcus lying before me on the hot pavement. The pain was unbearable.
How could the life of a black person be worth so little? How could the lives of young black men like me be tossed to the side and then be justified by narratives spun by media outlets? These questions needed answers. I needed to find a reason to climb back out. Read more here.