A letter to you, born in 2020

It’s a disease we have never seen before, and it’s taking a lot of people to the other side of that door you’ve just entered. It’s scary. It’s sad. It’s painful. Not words I wanted to share with you just yet.

So on the day you were born, everybody was just pissed off. Then something crazy happened and took it up a notch: the world suddenly became terrified. Now let me tell you, when fear and anger come together, it’s not a good recipe. These two are powerful forces, that feed off of each other and when they merge, they tend to destroy everything in their wake. You’ll unfortunately read about it when you’re older. That’s the History the world shares. Oh I’m sorry… Of course, you have no idea what I’m talking about. You don’t realize what’s happening right now! You’re too busy laughing at your brother’s dance moves, staring at your mom’s breast with firm intent every 4 hours and smiling at me like no other woman ever has. So let me try to sum it up for you: I’m sure you’ve noticed that right now, we’re at home all the time. I know you love it sweetie, but it’s not how it’s supposed to be. It’s not very healthy. Trust me, one day you’ll agree (and yes, you will hear that sentence a lot!) What happened is there’s this disease that popped up and viciously spread around the globe in a matter of weeks. It’s one we have never seen before, and it’s taking a lot of people to the other side of that door you’ve just entered. It’s scary. It’s sad. It’s painful. Not words I wanted to share with you just yet, but you’re studying us so much, you’ve probably seen them in our eyes already. And you know, this virus, it’s doing something else. It’s forcing us to face how vulnerable we all are. You. Me. Them. And some people can’t stand that. Some people, when they get scared, they immediately get angry. These people are the weak ones. You’ll spot them easily. They’re mostly men. They ramble. They scream. They lie and deny. And many of these men have been making this country dance dangerously close to the flames of fascism. With every news cycle (an expression that refers to a span of time of about 10 minutes) they got closer and closer. So, of course, it eventually caught fire.

What the f*** Dad?! I’m just starting to learn how to breathe and you’re talking to me about lungs on fire?!

One big problem when a place catches on fire, is that if you’re in the wrong corner at the wrong time facing the wrong wind, you won’t be able to breathe. And like many times in history, men and women were forced to stand in the wrong corner at the wrong time facing the wrong wind. Not because they were angry. Not because they were weak. Not because they were scared. But because they were black. Other times, other places, it can be other people. But here in America, it’s people who have a darker skin color than you. I know, they stand out, don’t they? They’re the ones who are smiling.

I know you’ve heard mom and dad argue quite a few times these past few months. But you should know they’re a lot more than that. Everything is a lot more than this.

Oh, okay, I found something else. See, it’s good you forced me. Here’s something I’ve noticed about this country, your country, this country your dad has idolized his entire life, this country some of your ancestors so desperately wished they could have escaped to: it never does anything half way. It revels in the extremes, which is its gift and its tragedy. So when America goes crazy, it goes clinically insane. But when it decides to go the other way, it can accomplish some of the most amazing things the world has seen…We just have to wait for the next round. (I really hope for all of us that your dad is right on that one. But guess what, Dad is always right, so the odds are on our side!)

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