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Monday, December 11, 2023
The independent student publication of The University at Buffalo, since 1950

I am numb to the racial inequality against Black Americans in America

When will enough be enough for the U.S. to create an equitable nation that gives Black Americans fair and nondiscriminatory treatment?

On May 31, 1921, a white mob attacked the city of Tulsa, Oklahoma, destroying the neighborhood of Glenwood a.k.a. Black Wall Street and massacring over 160 Black people.

On December 4, 1969, plainclothes Chicago police officers fired more than 90 bullets into a West Side Chicago apartment, killing the 21-year-old chairman of the Chicago Black Panthers next to his fiancéee, who was pregnant with their eight-month-old son at the time.

On May 25, 2020, a Minneapolis police officer pinned the full weight of his body into George Floyd’s neck for over nine minutes until the oxygen left the father of five’s body.

On May 14, 2022, a white supremacist killed ten people and injured three in a racially-motivated shooting at a local Tops in a predominantly Black, significantly underserved and segregated Buffalo community.

These are just a few instances that serve as reminders to people who look like me that just because we live in a more progressive country today, does not make us equal to other races in America, especially white Americans.

Will racism in the U.S. ever end?

For myself and many of my friends, the likely answer seems to be that it won’t.

The lack of hope comes from the self-evident truths that U.S. history, institutions and current events tell us.

Videos of police shooting and abusing their power against Black individuals is something that I see on a weekly basis, and at some points in the past, a daily basis.

Hearing about incidents where Black people are called racial slurs, locked out of opportunities or assaulted simply because of their skin tone is something that I hear all too often.

My middle school to college education was and has been great. One of the best parts about it is the accuracy of the lessons that my teachers have taught me and my peers. 

Racism is so deeply ingrained in U.S. society that it is almost impossible to imagine the country without it, especially when it comes to racism against Black people.

Saying I am tired of the racism that exists in the U.S. would be an understatement.

I am numb to it. 

I am numb to seeing people who look like me murdered without justice. I am numb to seeing people who look like me taken advantage of with a gap in societal support. A blind eye is turned even though robust evidence shows the issues need immediate attention.

The story of Black people in the U.S. is a story of persistent resilience in a country that disproportionately denies us equity to our peers who do not look like us. 

We need change! 

But, like many of my peers, there are times when I’m tired of fighting when the odds are almost immeasurably stacked against me and others with similar skin tones to my own.

CORRECTION: A previous version of this story incorrectly stated that George Floyd was killed on May 5, 2020. He was actually killed on May 25, 2020. We regret this error.  

A.J. Franklin is an assistant features editor and can be reached at



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