If you’re Black, you were born in jail.

Welcome to my first book review blog post ever. I was never good at book reports in school, so I’ll keep it short and just include a few excerpts that spoke to me.

I read[cover to cover] about six books last year, but Between the World and Me was the one that really resonated. I borrowed it from my local library, but it’s no doubt on its way to becoming a part of my collection. It’s an open letter written by the talented Ta’Nehisi  Coates, a beautiful writer. There is such a poetic flow to this work + I appreciate his clear and concise story-telling style. I felt every page, paragraph and statement because it is me he’s speaking to-the hardened and hurt and conditioned. To every Black body that instantly assumes burdens just by being born. Spoken with love and empathy and the hefty weight of brown skin, Ta’Nehisi is literally the voice for every Black parent and teacher and sister and family friend and uncle who love their children [and the village’s children] so fiercely, yet -so conditioned and hardened-can rarely find the means to express that love with an embrace or gentle word.

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Black people love their children with a kind of obsession…I think we would like to kill you ourselves before seeing you killed by the streets that America made. This is a philosophy of the disembodied, of a people who control nothing, who can protect nothing, who are made to fear not just the criminals among them but the police who lord over them with all the moral authority of a protection racket.

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My working theory then held all black people as kings in exile, a nation of original men severed from our original names and our majestic Nubian culture.

 

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..perhaps being named “black” was just someone’s name for being at the bottom, a human turned into an object, object turned to pariah.

 

I knew that Prince was not killed by a single officer so much as he was murdered by his country and all the fears that have marked it since birth. 

 

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You cannot forget how much they took from us and how they transfigured our very bodies into sugar, tobacco, cotton, and gold.

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I wholeheartedly agree with Toni Morrison: This is required reading.

I absorbed so much from this wonderful book. Please share your thoughts if you’ve read it.

 

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18 thoughts on “If you’re Black, you were born in jail.

  1. I don’t know what to say. Even though I am white, I will always stand with you. Even thought I know that I will never understand, I will listen and hold out my hands. I don’t know why the world is so ugly. Horrible hatred handed down from one generation to another so that people never get to chose what to believe. Wealth and position, color and birth should never upset the balance of life. I have always stood by my friends, no matter their race or beliefs and I will continue to do so until I am no longer here. Peace and love to you.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. Kelley, when I was a young girl I read a book that really moved me, just as this book has moved you. It was called “I Survived Hiltlers Ovens”. That is why it is so important to write and tell the stories of what has happened. It changes people. I am neither Jewish nor am I black, but I hear your cries for justice.
    Leslie

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I got to read this damn book! My friend recommended it to me. And every time, I’m in the bookstore it calls me like read me read me read me… I will listen to that call very soon for sure, especially after reading this. Thanks for sharing!

    Liked by 1 person

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