Years ago, I was awoken in the middle of the night by a horrific dream… By the clothing and shapes of cars, it seemed to be set in the 1950’s. A gang of adult and young males tore through an alley, randomly shooting people and taking up young boys. My dream centered on one boy, age 7 or so. His dark skin glistened with sweat as he stood frozen. I saw utter shock and confusion in his eyes. Fear seemed not even to hit him yet as a 14 yr old boy pulled on his arm demanding he come. The little boy refused to budge. An older man, dressed in a suit, then pointed a gun at the boy and said that he will die like his friend there if he doesn’t come. The boy looked to his friend whose face was shot off, then grabbed a neon, plastic dart gun from his friend’s bloodied pocket. The older man grinned as he watched the boy do this and run to a waiting car.

My dream didn’t end there… It then went another scene, where the older man, the leader, spotted his 16 yr old daughter talking to a fellow on the street.  The young fellow took off when he saw the girl’s farther approaching them. The father grabbed and stroked the button flap of her black, wool petticoat as he questioned why she was talking to that boy. The daughter seemed oblivious to the fate of the fellow pursuing her and irked at her father for disturbing her fun. She didn’t even notice the blood on her dad’s hands, and even giggled. She seemed to be daddy’s little girl. I awoke as I could see the dad’s stained blood hands rising up to my collar.

I don’t know if these people or situation was an accumulation of media, movies and news coverage, or scenes from another life. My heart was pounding, my mind numb. I could not shake the image of the daughter, the older man, and the little boy. My conscious became flooded with emotions. This is one reason why I do not watch violent movies or the news because my chest tightens and my stomach turns.

I feel the suffering, the desperation, the hopelessness, the fear.

I want to run screaming, fighting, and crying.

I know this is real life some where, every where and even right now as I type; someone is being tortured by someone who was tortured, physically, emotionally, and spiritually.

I cannot rest with all this pain.

As I lay in bed processing all these images and feelings, the song from En Vougue played in my head:

“Free your mind and the rest will follow
Be color blind, don’t be so shallow…
Free your mind and the rest will follow
Be color blind don’t be so shallow….Free Your mind!

Why oh why must it be this way?
Before you can read me you gotta learn how to see me…”


Read more: En Vogue – Free Your Mind Lyrics | MetroLyrics