Book review the hate u give + discussion bookmarkchronicles

Soon afterward, his death is a national headline. Some are calling him a thug, maybe even a drug dealer and a gangbanger. Protesters are taking to the streets in Khalil’s name. Some cops and the local drug lord try to intimidate Starr and her family. What everyone wants to know is: what really went down that night? And the only person alive who can answer that is Starr.

I’m going to go ahead and jump into the story – Khalil didn’t have to die. He should not have died. He was unarmed and he wasn’t a threat. Sure, he was kind of being an asshole but he had a right to know why he was being pulled over. The crazy thing is that he died because he wanted to make sure that Starr was okay. That’s it. Even if officer 119 did think that Khalil was reaching for a gun, one shot was enough to stop him from doing whatever he was doing.

Were the other two shots necessary? No. The only acceptable answer to that question, is no.

Hailey is the epitome of white feminism and why it’s a problem. You can’t talk about uplifting women but then turn around and say racist shit as if women of color don’t count. Being friends with people of color doesn’t exempt you from being racist. You don’t get a pass. She was also way more concerned with her image than with the fact that she had actually said racist things on multiple occasions. Her apology to Starr was bullshit. You can’t say “I’m sorry you feel hurt” and think it’s okay. You have to be sorry for causing that pain. It’s pretty simple really.

Let me explain now that it has nothing to do with shame of who you are, where you come from, or anything like that. It’s the fact that when you’re around a bunch of rich white kids you know that 1. They’ve likely never spent an extended amount of time around people of color 2. The exception to #1 is typically a maid or housekeeper and 3. They will look at you as the representation and voice of everyone else who looks like you. Sure, this won’t be the case for all of them, but it is for the majority.

The other thing is the idea of “sounding white.” I was told this often as a child and essentially all it means is that I speak what is considered “proper” English. What pisses me off about it is that by telling me that I sound white you assumed that because I’m Black I’m uneducated and/or use slang all the time. It’s also another example of white people being considered the norm or what people are “supposed” to be.

A lot of people are unaware of the fact that African American Vernacular English aka AAVE or Ebonics is linguistically considered a language. This is where words like “ain’t” originated from. The language itself originated as a result of slavery and the fact that slaves were prevented from learning to read, write or be educated at all for the most part as well as a blend of different African cultures coming together in America at that time. Many people use AAVE and have absolutely no idea of the history behind it. I get that it may not be a well known fact but I kind of feel like this is one more example (there are tons) of how Black people/culture has contributed to society but isn’t credited for it.

This is sometimes a tricky topic to explain. You will often hear someone say that choosing not to date someone due to their race is racist……well it is….but there’s also more behind that. Hopefully at this point you’re familiar with the concept of race as a social construct created by white people and therefore it cannot be used against them (if you have no idea what the hell I’m talking about then message me and we’ll chat). This situation is kind of like that because when old school parents of color don’t want their children dating white people it’s because they don’t want their children dating their oppressor. For many parents, it also raises the question of if their child is internally battling racism. Has the affect of a fucked up society that constantly makes white people the norm caused their child to dislike their own skin and those of people who look like them?

I also thought about this a lot when Chris was mad at Starr for not telling him that she was the witness in Khalil’s case. First and foremost, how selfish do you have to be to take someone else’s trauma and try to make it about you? Second, he most likely will never be in that situation, so while Starr can tell him all about it, he will never understand. It makes me sick when white people want to date people of color while constantly turning a blind eye to the issues that they face. Just like with Hailey, dating a person of color does not mean you can’t be racist.

For some reason, many people still don’t seem to understand how exactly poverty works. It has nothing to do with laziness or anything close to it and more often is a result of a fucked up system designed to prevent the people at the bottom from moving upward. Quite frankly you need to understand that everything won’t always end up like The Pursuit of Happiness. Even then, his situation got a lot worse before it started to get better. None of it happened overnight

“Drugs come from somewhere, and they’re destroying our community. You got folks like Brenda, who think they need them to survive. The Brendas can’t get jobs unless they’re clean, and they can’t pay for rehab unless they got jobs. When the Khalils get arrested for selling drugs, they either spend most of their life in prison, another billion dollar industry, or they have a hard time getting a real job and probably start selling drugs again. That’s the hate they’re giving us….a system designed against us.”

I don’t know for sure but I highly doubt that a lot of people are like, “when I grow up I want to be a drug dealer. Yeah!” I just don’t think that happens to often. It’s one of those things that is unfortunate but very easy to fall into and there is always a reason for it. Khalil hated drugs because he saw first hand what they could do to someone. Drugs are the very reason that his relationship with his mother is strained. However, his grandmother is the next best thing that he has to a mother. She’s dying, she needs treatment, and Khalil and his little brother need to eat. Yes, he absolutely could get a job at a fast food place or retail but do you know how much chemo costs? A lot. Too much for someone with some minimum wage job to pay.

For anyone who doesn’t know (or willingly chooses to listen to bullshit) The Black Panthers are not a hate group and you cannot compare them to the KKK. The Black Panthers were a militant self-defense group that was started in response to police brutality in 1966 (Yes, militant. But only in self defense). It’s not The Black Panthers who were going around burning houses and churches and lynching people but apparently most of America has blocked out those memories.

Black Lives Matter was started as a result of cops killing Black people and not being charged for it. It’s not like it was just a one time thing, it happened over and over and still nothing was being done about it. Many of these deaths were caught on tape, many of the victims were unarmed and not a threat, yet somehow their killers walked free. There was no justice and we are still (rightfully) angry.

A lot of people feel the need to respond to this phrase with “All Lives Matter” but the thing is, we never denied that. Never did we say that it was only the lives of Black people that were important. The reason that we have to say this at all is because history has always told us that we don’t. Somehow people also seem to forget that Black lives have to be included in “all” so do you really care about everyone or do you just want to silence us?

Here’s the thing, an unarmed Black person is killed by a police officer (a lot of times for no valid reason) and the media will try to dig up whatever they can to frame them as a criminal. Even if they can’t find anything, people will still try to justify their death. Say that they deserved it. That they should have done something differently. Even if they do everything that the officer tells them, it’s caught on video and the victim still dies, then everyone kinda just says oh well. Like it’s not a big deal. They weren’t white or famous so what does it matter right?

The deaths at the hands of police officers has stirred up a lot of emotion. It’s lead to some rioting but also to some very peaceful protests. Unfortunately, the peaceful protests are almost always overshadowed by riots. It says something when peaceful protests in honor of unarmed Black civilians causes police officers to show up in riot gear but Nazis marching with torches in Charlottesville is just… free speech.