There has been a lot going on in our country and I want to educate myself more and want to be strongly anti-racist. I like to read so I figure books would be a good place to start (on my own at least). And there are plenty of lists out there with recommendations. A group from college started a book club and we’re starting with a non-fiction, so I figured I’d go ahead on my own and read this novel I’ve heard so much about.
The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas is technically fiction. The events portrayed did not happen to the author nor is it about any specific real person. It is however based on many actual events that have occurred for many years. A young black man being shot by the police for no reason is all too common a headline. Or, in a lot of cases, doesn’t even get a headline. In the book, the main character, Starr, is with her friend when this happens and she is the only witness. It happens in a “bad” part of town. She is sixteen years old. Starr’s life is thrown into a tailspin which is not made better by the fact that she attends a private, mostly Caucasian high school. So her friends there don’t know and wouldn’t understand.
I cannot imagine having to deal with something like this. And I will never understand how the Black community feels every time this happens. When this happens over and over. It makes me feel angry and sick, so I cannot imagine how the communities where these atrocities happen feel. Obviously not all police are bad. But something has to change for them to be held accountable when people are killed for no reason and for them to not automatically resort to deadly force. And this story is not afraid to make the situation feel more complicated. No one is perfect but that does not mean they deserve to die.
We have to do better. I want to do better. I know there’s not a whole I can do on my own, which makes me feel very helpless. But hopefully educating myself and having conversations helps in a small way. If everyone did the same, imagine what could happen! Definitely check out this book. It’s an emotional read but pretty quick and worth every minute. We watched the movie as well, and while it is powerful and emotional, the book is obviously better (as usual). But if you’re not a book person, at least check out the movie!