The deaths of Alton Sterling and Philando Castile shook America to its core. So, some BuzzFeed employees decided to openly and honestly discuss how they were feeling in hopes that it will help those who feel like they don't have a voice feel a little more heard.
The day after Philando Castile was shot in Minnesota when he reached for his wallet after being pulled over, all of us were left speechless and afraid.
When some of us first heard about the shootings, we didn’t believe that something so disgusting could happen two days in a row.
While others were in disbelief about the fact that they weren’t shocked that it happened again.
But it did, and there was a collective sense of numbness that we all felt and still feel to this day.
Because this world has made us feel less than what we actually are...
...and it stems from stereotypes about black people that are constantly perpetuated in mainstream culture.
Many fear that they are living in a system that doesn't benefit or protect them.
And we often (sometimes without even realizing it) find ourselves apologizing for being offended or uncomfortable when topics like these are addressed with our white friends and colleagues.
Because safe spaces for black people do not exist unless we create them.
And because of the color of our skin, we automatically don’t have ownership of the spaces we do create.
When asked how people felt about those who act violently and without reason.
Because someone who truly believes in equal justice would not do something so cruel.
Many felt a sense of hope about change in the future.
But for change to happen, there needs to be a restructuring of the current system and an acknowledgment of the issues that put black people at disadvantage.