I was born and raised in this town when there was limited EVERYTHING. I can honestly say that I enjoyed every aspect of living the desert life from crossing the paths with lizards, snakes, and slow moving turtles to dining out at top steak house or soul food– life was good.
One thing I can remember very well about my city is that it was always diverse and, honestly, I was never made to feel less than, called out of my name (N Word) or being relegated to only having friends with a complexion of mine or darker. Vegas was a solid family town where people would pitch in and share everything from building supplies to food.
After leaving for many year’s for college (MS) and life in Detroit (MI), I was fortunate to return with my family six year’s ago and, I must admit, the vibe was a lot different and people had planted themselves in ‘my’ town from all areas of the nation and, they brought with them their beliefs and in some instances biases. But, as a believer that we attract what is in us, I have some really cool neighbors, friends and even associates that I know I can depend on under any circumstance.
On Sunday I had gone into radical prayer around 10:15pm praying for all of my family, friends and any individual connected to me. After resurfacing and wiping streaming tears from my eyes, my spirit immediately became vexed as something didn’t feel right, the energy was off and there was no peace (I have a very peaceful home). I had no clue that our city was under duress and siege but, it only took moments for me to start receiving alerts from concerned family and friends to ensure that we were at minimal, “Safe.”
It has always amazed me at how people think that Las Vegas is nothing but gaming, The Strip, parties, etc. when in truth, it is one of the best and most well rounded cities in the nation (not up for debate).
Yes, I believe with all that has transpired over the last 24-hours, people will begin to see just how strong and amazing this city is. The GoFundMe.com account for victims is nearing $4M in a day, the blood banks are seeing lines hours long for donations, food is pouring out all over the city and people are opening their homes.
Here is where I need to be clear as I’ve seen the comments people are sharing. I understand fully as a black woman in America, married to a black man with two black children (one son) the disparity that is shown when the predator is a white male. The narrative is always the same, “White male, low-key, music lover, no prior record, serious mental illness.” We all know that if this was a person with just a few more drops of melanin in his blood, his family would be sought out immediately and deemed suspects UNTIL they could prove otherwise, if at all!
I also know that some serious massacres have happened in this country yet are ignored because it was more of a purging. Places like Tulsa (OK), Elaine (AR), East St. Louis (MO), and Colfax (LA). Furthermore, I know that language is critical, especially when developing a hard to digest news story in America as it can shape the total fairytale story we’ve all been sold. I get it!✊🏾
We know that there is a need for gun control and extreme laws as it relates to the types of guns (and equipment) that an individual can purchase. I get it! But, as I shared on my personal Facebook page tonight, NOW IS NOT THE TIME! It hasn’t been a full 24-hours. We must first allow people (me and mine) time to mourn and process this massacre and then act, less we become desensitized. 😩
Whenever tragedies like these happen, my first thought is to cover the people with well wishes, positive energy, donations! I’d like the same return on my EI, Emotional Investment.
I have deemed myself a socially aware individual who will speak up against injustices in the hood and neighborhood by writing, calling, financially, and even tweeting. But honestly with all that I’ve seen directly and felt indirectly in my town, I do not have the strength — I am weary.
I continue to use my strongest weapon right now, “prayer” and continue to fight the good fight in due time my strength will be replenished.
Until then, I’m asking each of you to cautiously pick up the torch and continue the good fight while keeping the faith that truly we shall overcome, someday, while being mindful of how you use your voice (are you speaking life or death?)
Move Forward In RIGHTeousness XOXO♥