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This is why some Black people are asking themselves, “Why didn’t she just put out the cigarette, shut up and get through it?” Because she loved herself. Because she was on her way to fulfill her dream. Because she knew she was somebody and that she didn’t deserve to be mistreated. Because the demand for dignity always asserts itself at the height of an assault. Because the choice never should have been between her life or her dignity.

© 2006 – 2024 Raafi Rivero.