Overcoming hate in post-racial society is challenging but not impossible

by Cheryl Akpenyi , Contributor

It’s our month, and It’s our time; it’s our sisterhood and brotherhood. 

As we look forward to the future, I want to leave a message of hope for my brothers and my sisters. This is the key to the lock of the oppression we have shared over the many years. 

The N-word is used many times: to demean us, to break us and to dehumanize us. Our oppressors have tied us with this word for years. Although our ancestors were called this derogatory term, this didn’t stop us from shining through and being blessed with freedom evermore to come. 

However, with all of the blessings, privileges and human rights we fought for and were born with, this word haunts us. Generations later, we have turned the N-word into a kinship meaning that still negatively controls us, but we cannot let it bring us down when different ethnicities maliciously call us this. 

“[38] Ye have heard that it hath been said, An eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth: [39] But I say unto you, That ye resist not evil: but whosoever shall smite thee on thy right cheek, turn to him the other also.” 

A passage from the bible tells us that we can’t simply change how people treat us, but we can change how we react to their treatment. We shall not be in the gutter, and we shall not have shackles to a word birthed from hate. 

We are beautiful, and we are loved and worthy. The color of our skin shines like the moon, and our hearts shall do the same thing too.

This is my message to you for this is our hands melting in each other: we are sisters, and we are brothers, and our existence in this world is beautiful and will forever shower its purpose.  

This is our month of love and celebration. 

The N-word will never have shackles on us, especially since we have turned it into everlasting solidarity. 

This is my message to you.

Cheryl Akpenyi is a junior studying journalism and political science. Follow her on Twitter @_queencheryl.