We are connected to Black churches through our extended families, our friends and teachers, and our intertwined histories and convergent present.
There is for me, something especially painful about the loss of this young man. The fact that he hung himself feels like only a technicality regarding his death. His death, his suicide is the result of deep trauma, our society’s lack of empathy, racism, and extreme injustice. We have seen many images of Black people, black men especially hung with a rope wrapped around their necks. We call those lynchings. We haven’t seen one exactly like this in a long time. I imagine that what Kalief Browder’s mother witnessed when she saw him hanging from a window in their home looked quite similar.