Vidas Negras Importam
Fotos por Francisco Proner
Texto por Edu Carvalho
Black Lives Matter
Photographs by Francisco Proner
Text by Edu Carvalho
"Every 23 minutes a young black man is killed in the country. A bullet hits me. It hits me because I'm black and also because I'm young. It hits me, especially, because I don't trivialize the act, much less the pain. It couldn't be like that, or at least it wasn't meant to be.
Rio de Janeiro, a scenario sung in verse and prose for being the postcard, today faces one of its biggest crises. The city, immortalized by the words of master Zuenir Ventura as ‘‘ Broken City ’’ today is ‘‘ Broken City ’’. Once again, a bullet hits me. I learned to love this city, even though I lived in a social apartheid that I didn't choose. Only the place of conditioning was imposed on me, or rather tried. I didn't accept it and turned my back. A bullet hit me.
A bullet hit me when I listened quietly to a colleague's report saying that he was, is and still will, unfortunately, be stopped and searched by the police. For being black and having curly hair. The moment of pleasure and satisfaction of the uniformed person ends when the then colleague shows the identification card of the faculty (the one, which is governed by a religious institution of the Jesuit order). ‘‘ It wasn’t this time ’’, replies the policeman.
And the bullet hit me again.
It hits me when someone goes through an episode of prejudice. ''Monkey''; ‘‘ Your black ’’; ''unclean''; ‘’ You shouldn’t be here ’’. Years ago, I was invited to go to an event. Asked about the place where I lived, I answered in the act ‘’ Rocinha ’’. ''Wow! But in Rocinha? It doesn't even seem. ’’ Was the answer I heard. I was 14 and I was hit.
It hurts. It's heavy. A burden. I want the day where I don't have to go to college to make it impossible for me to go to the magazine or anything. I want to live, meet other young people. I want them to be able to dream and materialize. I want integration and they can go to a beach in the South Zone without being followed and detained, without having done anything at all. May it not be killed, weapons should be lowered and education valued. Let prejudice diminish.
Above all, I want the purity of the look of the boy who walks with me along the sign and, when he sees the passing police cars on a train, asks his father what is going on. Having the answer, he says firmly ‘’ Dad, this cannot happen. The street is not theirs with the guns. The street is ours, so we can live in peace ’’.
"I only know that I believe in the boy and it is in the boy
that I see the strength of faith.”