This is not a world I can ever understand. This is a world I can only look in from the outside. Wearing the same skin as the perpetrators of these crimes against man and family.

I can read their words. I can try to put myself in their place but I can never truly understand. I can boost their signal and get their words in front of more people.

I don’t know how people are coping today with the news of not one, but two murders at the hands of police yesterday. My friend Patrick Rhone lives near the shooting in Minnesota.

He is rightfully scared for his family and young daughter.

“Her grandmother has an arrest record. Her great-grandmother has an arrest record as long as my arm.”

His daughter put things more simply than I ever could today:

Erica Joy writes from the sanctuary of her work library since it’s the closest place she has to home on a day like this. Armed with only pain and headphones, she writes in Processing:

Though many black folks joke about it, there is no such thing as “calling in black.” To call in black would be a radical act of self care, were it available to most black people. On the day after we have watched yet another black body be destroyed by modern day slave patrols, it would be helpful for us to be able to take a day away to process. To grieve. To hurt. To be angry. To try to once again come to grips with the fact that many people in this country, especially those in power, consider us disposable at best.

I can’t know their pain. I can only mourn for the loss of people who had no idea yesterday would be their last. They were no more in the wrong than I was going to work and driving home.

I know what happened is wrong. It continues to be wrong and it continues to be about race. This does not happen to white people. It doesn’t take long to look for a story about a white person acting violently towards police officers and living.

White people aren’t gunned down for existing.

I leave you today with an anecdote from a friend of my wife. They are both art therapists in the Washington DC area. Her friend is a woman of color and was talking to my wife recently about moving out of DC.

She was looking to moving into Montgomery County, in Maryland which borders DC. She wanted to get out of the district because it was getting too expensive and she could get her kids into a better school system. But she was worried about school violence.

She said something I had never thought about before.

School shootings is a white person problem. School shooters are predominantly white. According to 82/133 shooters were white.

My wife’s friend was afraid to move her children to the suburbs of DC because she was afraid of school shootings. This is a white problem. And it opened my eyes because I had never thought about it before.

I miss a lot being a straight white male. I try to open my eyes and see the world around me for what it is, but there are things I can never know. I can only open my eyes, my ears and listen.