I see our country being divided by racial profiling and violence.
This summer was a deadly and dangerous one, awakening us to the harsh reality that the people who are supposed to serve and protect us are profiling minorities, specifically African-American males, as thugs and criminals.
As a mother of two half African-American boys, I fear for their safety.
Of course, racial profiling is nothing new. It has been around for as long as our country itself. But because of new technologies and social media, evidence of racial profiling is being more rapidly shared and distributed than ever.
My sons are not only half African-American, they are also half Mexican, and I am now hyper-aware that as they grow up they might be unfairly targeted as members of one or both of these ethnicities.
No doubt given the current political and social climate, their bi-racial appearance will create obstacles for them to overcome.
With all of the images of young African-American men being killed by police officers on television and social media, I am becoming more overprotective than ever. I have taken away all of their toy guns. I think twice before letting them play outside. I have had to explain to my 6-year-old why police are killing kids who look like him; why they are killing grown men who look like his father and uncles.
I have come to terms with the fact that my sons will have to deal with racism and prejudice. No doubt at some point –whether by a police officer or a person they pass on the street– they will be racially profiled solely by the color of their skin. The reality is that they, too, could become victim of police brutality someday.
As much as I did not want to be an overprotective mom, like my strict Mexican parents were with me, I have to protect my boys while I still can. I resented my parents while growing up but now I understand that sometimes, the world forces you to be that way.
To keep my boys alive, I am willing to let them hate me.