The Bridge Between: Black lives matter everywhere

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Now that we have highlighted and exposed the long-standing racial inequities in every aspect of American life, and in a way forced a deep reckoning across our society, we must acknowledge that we cannot remain angry forever.

We have to start finding ways to address the injustices that exist in our communities and in society at large because our future cannot afford for us to remain angry without an action plan.

This plan that we have to create together as a human species has to be an inclusive one, not just here in the United States but all over our globe because Black Lives Matter especially outside of the U.S.

Imagine living a life where you cannot go back to your homeland, where your connections to the stories of your family have been broken. 

My parents and grandparents often tell me of the place we came from and of the success and strength of our community.

But now I know I can’t go back, I can only imagine, because of the genocide that is happening in Darfur.

For the past 15 years, Darfur has been faced with a systemic and well-organized genocide and no one seems to want to take action.

For the past 15 years 480,000 people have been killed and they are still being killed today.

For the past 15 years, more than 2.8 million people have been displaced – and you are a witness of that, having me here in the United States.

For the past 15 years, my home has been a war zone.

It’s quiet in Darfur – not the silence of peace, but the silence of death.

Homes that once carried histories of generations are now burned ashes on the ground waiting for the wind to blow them to their final destination.

My mothers, who were once leaders of their communities, are now used as war weapons.

My sisters, who once had chances to be future leaders, are now afraid to see the sun.

So I speak for them. 

I speak for the thousands of mothers who have been speaking forever, but there was no one to listen.

I speak for the thousands of girls who want to speak but don’t have a voice.

I speak for the thousands of children of Darfur.  

I speak so they can be heard. 

Recent violence in Darfur reminds us of the long road ahead for Darfuris in Sudan, and those who live as refugees, but it also reinforces the need for us to support them as they seek to rise out of the ashes of their nation’s past.

Just because it is not happening in the United States and there is no media coverage, it does not mean that it’s not happening.

Let us continue to advocate for change, for a universal plan that makes us all feel like we are heard, seen, and matter. Advocate for justice for black, brown, and indigenous people all over this globe.

Our future generation deserves nothing less.

Ekhlas Ahmed is a human rights activist and educator who lives in Windham. She is vice president and co-founder of the nonprofit Chance to Advance, which raises awareness about Darfur and implements initiatives to make education more feasible for all. Follow her on Facebook and contact her at ekhlas.ahmed@yahoo.com.