#BofetónDeCariño: “Nobody Can Breathe”
Some people suggested that I should translate this #BofetónDeCariño in English or put subtitles on it. Here it is with all my love and respect, #NobodyCanBreathe.
While history continues to be made in space, on earth we are killing ourselves. How ironic! Exploring life where we don’t know it and ending it were we do.
I confess that it hurts, drains, and frustrates me to know that there is racism, discrimination, and all kinds of prejudices. It hurts to see us at war, fighting for what belongs to all of us since we were born.
We all know George Floyd’s case, but I am going to talk to you about Derek Chauvin. This is the name of the man who for 8 minutes and 46 seconds pressed George Floyd’s neck to the ground with his knee, but only took 5 minutes and 53 seconds to leave him breathless, lifeless.
It‘s difficult to watch the video and not feel anger, sadness, helplessness, outrage. But, I will tell you what hurts and worries me the most is that we all saw each other in George Floyd’s breathless body; we were drowned by injustice, but we are not asking ourselves if- unintentionally, without realizing it – we have also been Derek Chauvin. I know it may sound “heavy”, but I ask you with all my love and respect to do the exercise.
The worst disease in our society is to think that there are only a few who are correct: the normal ones, the special ones, the chosen ones. Beliefs that have lasted too long and that the world once took for granted. As if only one religion, a skin color, an ideal weight, a political ideology, an orientation or a sexual identity is correct. By disqualifying everything that is different and not socially correct, we fall into judging, discriminating, and condemning.
We are oppressors with each mockery and act of rejection of who is “different” or thinks differently from us. Blacks, albinos, homosexuals, transsexuals, queers, those who have strabismus (who are called “cross eyed”), with missing limbs, one-handed, stutters, people with acne, vitiligo, with tattoos, fat, skinny, those who have old sneakers or an old car or those who have too much money, who are missing teeth or have warts, man, woman, the list is too long, but all and all: being different is a target of rejection and ridicule.
This is not the first time that I‘m speaking out about this subject, of the role that mockery and rejection play, and for speaking about it, I have been judged; but when we keep quiet, when we mock and when we reject others for being different, for the situations they are facing or for the conditions they suffer, we are not only perpetuating stereotypes and feeding prejudices, we are part of that knee that pressed George Floyd to the floor .
I can’t breathe with every act of rejection.
My legs hurt from a lack of solidarity.
My neck hurts from the indifference of those who look the other way.
My stomach hurts from superiority complex.
Everything hurts when what is human and sensitive is missing,
because if we can’t give way to love, no one… Nobody can breathe.
- Yizette Cifredo
Thanks to Lynett Fragoso, Desmond Santiago, JFD Creations and my love Victor Santiago for the translation; and Javier Iván for the subtitles. Thank you all for your commitment with the message. I appreciate it a lot!!!