"What Should I Do?"
What Should I Do?
By Rhonda Bennetone
What should I do?
Should I fall on my knees and beg for you to save me?
Should I stand open arms pleading to be with you, tell me what should I do.
Should I cover my eyes and pretend that I donít see what you do to me?
Or should I drop my hands, shrug my shoulders and pretend that I donít care?
Or do I dare? Raise my fist in the name of revolution until someone puts a bullet in my head and I am dead?
Should I sail the seven seas searching for someone who will ally with me?
Or should I speak words and words and words and words and words until someone shuts me up because theyíve decided theyíve had enough?
Tell me what should I do?
And you tell me the struggle is over
And I donít have to fight no more
Well if thatís the case, why do I smell the stench of death and deceit every time I walk outside my door?
Why is it that I am cursed for having open eyes in a world where everyone elseís are closed?
And I am scorned for speaking the condition of my people that I know?
How do I battle an enemy unseen?
How can I say ďfight for justiceĒ if you donít even know what I mean?
As they tell me what I say isnít even trueÖ
Then tell me, what should I do?
Well Iíll tell you what I wonít do-
I wonít fall on my knees and beg for you to save me, Iíll save myself
I wonít stand with open arms pleading to join with you if you donít want me there, Iíll turn somewhere else
I will not turn a blind eye to injustice and defend it with excuses that were made before I was born
As the media teaches scorn against my people
I will not sit and eat my meals contently
As a quarter of my people live in poverty
Not knowing where their next meal is coming from
Shamed at the welfare office with nowhere else left to run
I will not simply take my piece of success and go to my job peacefully
As my brothers and sisters are incarcerated unequally
Working in prisons for free in the most modern accepted form of slavery
I will not sit here and act like racism does not exist
As bullet holes are put into black bodies at rates similar to war
I swear- I canít take no more
I will not ignore the psychological and social oppression I face everyday
If I can hold hands with a white person then I am free
But the truth is I am holding hands with a white person while there are shackles all over me
Thereís shackles on my wrist, thereís shackles on my mind, thereís a muzzle on my mouth as you tell me not speak
But they tell say I am free?!
Freedom has no partiality
I will not let my freedom be defined and dictated by the misinformed and the un-oppressed
It is the informed and the oppressed who know oppression at its best
I will not wait for some white savior to rescue me from my black condition
I will not wait for another black leader to be killed in repetition
I will not wait for someone to save me, because if I do, I will never be free
And neither will you
Until you realize the truth
And stop believing a corrupted nationís lies
To be the American dream
I promise you this shit ainít what it seem
And until you realize that -
Youíll either fall on your knees, shrug your shoulders or cover your eyes
But either way, you still suffer my brother
Black or White-
We all suffer when we accept whatís wrong over what is right
A surge of negativity is the curse of a nation, too corrupted, too afraid and too blind to correct its mistakes
Happiness is whatís at stake
For you and for me
Because we are all connected in ways we cannot see
In God, In the Universe
And our failure to accept that connection is our curse
If all you care about is materialism in the form of money, cars and clothes
You will never know
That which can truly set you free
To save the lives of others is to save your own
But if you wonít Iíll do it on my own
I rather die fighting for freedom, than pretend I am free
I rather see the horror with open eyes, than to walk through the horror blindly
I rather be persecuted for preaching truth, than praised for promoting lies
I rather live as my true self than live my whole life in disguise
Oh God, I promise to never again foolishly accept that which is untrue
And I all I can do is hope the same for you
We must stop believing the televisionís lies and the words on the lips of those who have no clue.
And ask our deepest most inner selves what we can and what we should do.