What a privilege it is to breathe


Sucker Punch

 

What a privilege it is to breathe

What a privilege it is
To breathe in schools,
Knowing your histories are told,
Your language is spoken and taught.
To breathe in an art gallery,
Knowing your work has market value and hangs on those white walls.
To breathe in a movie theater,
Knowing that multidimensional characters who look like you will entertain you.
To breathe a pickup line on a dating app,
Knowing you won’t be fetishized.
To breathe in an interview
Knowing you won’t be turned away by the way you speak or the color of your skin.
To breathe in a grocery store,
Knowing that you won’t be blamed for or especially vulnerable during a pandemic.
To breathe in a courtroom,
Knowing justice will be rightfully served if you are wrongly accused.
To breathe at a podium addressing the nation,
Knowing people will listen to your ideas and elect you to office even if you only say
hateful words.
To breathe in a car,
Knowing speeding won’t be the last thing you do.
To breathe during a protest,
Knowing tear gas won’t suffocate your lungs.
To breathe while dreaming of the future,
Knowing you have the money, the connections, and the face to get you there.
What a privilege it is to breathe
And navigate the world without fear for your physical, emotional, social, and economic
safety.
He could not breathe
Under the weight of an officer’s knee,
Under the systems that choked him because he was not white.
He did not have the privilege to breathe.

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