I dont know why this is affecting me so much, but it is. I am currently sitting on a sidewalk bench, just returning from an AMAZING Foster the People concert at the Masquerade in Atlanta. Yet, throughout the night, in the pit of my stomach, i felt the need to check twitter for Troy Davis updates.
He obviously was not executed at 7pm on Sept 21st as planned, but his story grabbed at millions of hearts around the world, all of them hoping for the best. All of them were, like me, emersed in naïve belief that America would NOT murder senselessly. In fact, i read of his story via my Pulse app in early September and though i felt sorrow for the unknow Davis man in the article, the most i did was share the link with Twitter and move on. I just knew everything would be ok for him.
Hope…. Its not just a genius gimmick spawned from the 2008 Obama campaign, its a real force that drives us as human beings. If we do not have hope, something positive to look forward to, we as humans, have nothing. It is a large part of the concept of true love, the hope that it should last forever, beyond our realm of time, that we strive so often for a fulfilling companion.
Hope is a common unconscious feeling i have for most American sob stories i read in the news. Things will get better, this is the United States. Someone will donate to a charity in his name and they’ll be rich by the end of the week. Well, as the weeks progressed, i never forgot about Davis’s story and more and more people were stumbling upon him as well. The charity wasnt happening, but petitions with hundreds of thousands of names were popping up. Protests were vicisously chanting throughout Georgia.
There was only a few days till his execution now and it was feeling more and more like an innocent man was going to die by the hand of the state. What can i do? Jackson, Ga is so far away. I’ve read the articles, I’ve called the government numbers, i’ve retweeted at least 50 people in opposition and i’ve signed the petitions. I honestly thought it would all add up. Honestly!!!! HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS of people spoke up on the day of his execution and……………… It makes no damn difference to them whether he lives or dies. Yea, it makes me feel like F(orget) America, altogether.
It was a truly amazing Foster the People concert tho: Helena Beat, Call It What You Want, Pumped Up Kicks, Dont Stop and so much more. Even their opening acts (Reptar) touched my musical soul, with one (The Cults) hailing from my high school. It was bliss for one night during the work week. I got drunk enough to dance on the grassy knoll with my friend all crazy and free… Like nothing nothing mattered in the world. I ran up to the stage and let the lights and bass bathe my all over me. I left, satisfied, allowing the last of the summer breeze to cool my intoxication.
Then i checked Twitter and guess what was trending, after all that hope…. #RIPtroydavis. I just stared at it. I looked for more tweets for confirmation. Nothing was helping. On my short walk through the city back to my loft, i just collasped onto a familar bench and cried my eyes out. I cried and cried and i prayed. I kept telling God I didnt know what to say or what to pray but to look at my heart for the words i didnt have. My tears and sobs and pleas of understanding wouldnt stop. I felt crazy! I didnt even know this man!
Still…. Idk if i was my heart broken that an innocent man was executed with no real proof or the country i unconsciously believed in failed so miserably.
Ten years of death row.
Fifty years of civil rights progress.
One hundred and fifty years since we were granted value to our lives. But does anyone remember the history before that? The part when we were kings and queens of huge villages? That story wasnt taught to us and pounded into our heads the way our slavery was. Instead, we have been conditioned to believe we are nothing but thugs. Racism, real and perceived, infiltrates our subconscious daily. We dont want racism to hapn, but its everywhere. Whyyy??? When did we forget that we are ALL one race. We are all human and we all have beating hearts, desperate for love. Our cultures are different, but we are all equally the same.
His last words were before he died were: “May God have mercy on your souls.” but he also left his millions of supporters with a very positive message in a letter:
I want to thank all of you for your efforts and dedication to Human Rights and Human Kindness, in the past year I have experienced such emotion, joy, sadness and never ending faith. It is because of all of you that I am alive today, as I look at my sister Martina I am marveled by the love she has for me and of course I worry about her and her health, but as she tells me she is the eldest and she will not back down from this fight to save my life and prove to the world that I am innocent of this terrible crime.
As I look at my mail from across the globe, from places I have never ever dreamed I would know about and people speaking languages and expressing cultures and religions I could only hope to one day see first hand. I am humbled by the emotion that fills my heart with overwhelming, overflowing Joy. I can’t even explain the insurgence of emotion I feel when I try to express the strength I draw from you all, it compounds my faith and it shows me yet again that this is not a case about the death penalty, this is not a case about Troy Davis, this is a case about Justice and the Human Spirit to see Justice prevail.
I cannot answer all of your letters but I do read them all, I cannot see you all but I can imagine your faces, I cannot hear you speak but your letters take me to the far reaches of the world, I cannot touch you physically but I feel your warmth everyday I exist.
So Thank you and remember I am in a place where execution can only destroy your physical form but because of my faith in God, my family and all of you I have been spiritually free for some time and no matter what happens in the days, weeks to come, this Movement to end the death penalty, to seek true justice, to expose a system that fails to protect the innocent must be accelerated. There are so many more Troy Davis’. This fight to end the death penalty is not won or lost through me but through our strength to move forward and save every innocent person in captivity around the globe. We need to dismantle this Unjust system city by city, state by state and country by country.
I can’t wait to Stand with you, no matter if that is in physical or spiritual form, I will one day be announcing,
” I AM TROY DAVIS, and I AM FREE!”
Never Stop Fighting for Justice and We will Win!