This viral Facebook post explains the harsh realities of being a black man in America.

When a UPS package arrived at Sean Carter's doorstep that wasn't his, he declined to deliver it to the correct house. Instead, he called the shipping company to request that they come and pick it up.    

Why would a Harvard-educated lawyer decline to do something so seemingly simple and harmless? Because, according to Carter, for American black men, it’s not.


In a heartfelt, painfully real Facebook post, Carter explained how racism puts black American men and boys in impossibly difficult, and often unsafe, situations.  

Sean wrote:

"'But Sean, why wouldn’t you be a decent person and just take the package to your neighbor? Or better yet, you have teenage sons. Send one of them. That’s the perk of having teenagers — free menial labor.' The answer is because we’re black. And it’s extremely unsafe to send our boys to the home of any family that we don’t know in this predominantly white neighborhood."

This package has been sitting outside my house for days now. Why? Because we are black. And yes, I’ll explain.UPS...

Posted by Sean Carter on Saturday, April 28, 2018

A father to teenage boys, Carter brought up how a pervasive racism is in society, to the point where he felt uncomfortable asking his sons to deliver the package or pushing himself to do it.

Even though Carter is highly educated, lives in a gated community, and by most standards is a successful, contributing member of his community, he is still seen as a threat because of his blackness.

Carter goes on to cite the countless experiences of other black men and boys who have been viewed as a threat and subsequently criminalized in public spaces as reasoning for his choice. He specifically talks about Brennan Walker, a 14-year-old black teen who decided to walk to school after missing his bus and got lost. In need of directions, Walker knocked on a neighbor's door and was met with gunfire instead help and kindness.  

"THAT is why this f****** package will be sitting on my porch until UPS retrieves it," Carter writes. "Because I can’t trust that my white neighbors won’t see me, a Harvard-educated lawyer (or my 14 yo honor student son) as a roaming homicidal maniac."

Carter's post about "post-racial" America resonated with thousands of Facebook users, and the post went viral.

Social media users from all over the country chimed in to express their solidarity with Carter, share their own experiences, and express frustration over how black people are being treated.

Screenshot from Facebook.

Screenshot from Facebook.

Screenshot from Facebook.

Carter’s post was liked and shared so many times, he appeared on CNN to further discuss his post.

"There’s a reason that you have gates, and it’s not to keep the rich people out," Carter said. "It’s to keep out that 'undesirable element,' whatever that might be. Right now I have a suit on, I don’t look like the undesirable element. But in a hoodie or in weekend attire, I would look like the person you’d call to worry about your neighborhood. I wasn’t going to subject myself or my 14-year-old sons to that."    

Carter's analysis is right. A 2014 study found that black boys as young as 10 years old "were more likely to be seen as older and more responsible for their actions" than their white peers. It's a reality that black men and boys have lived with for decades, and it's a reality that needs to change.  

Carter’s explanation online that black men shouldn’t have to live like this is totally on point, but we should also ensure that we don’t only support Ivy League educated people of color.

Black Americans, regardless of socioeconomic background, educational pedigree, or professional status, should be able to move freely without the fear of persecution.

To ensure that black Americans feel safe in their neighborhoods, jobs, and schools, it will require non-black people to reevaluate their biases and subconscious stereotypes. When people acknowledge their inherent biases and work to see black people as humans as opposed to threats, we create a fairer, safer nation for all people.

Our country has proven time and time again that it’s capable of this change. Let's make it happen.  

True
Back Market

Between the new normal that is working from home and e-learning for students of all ages, having functional electronic devices is extremely important. But that doesn't mean needing to run out and buy the latest and greatest model. In fact, this cycle of constantly upgrading our devices to keep up with the newest technology is an incredibly dangerous habit.

The amount of e-waste we produce each year is growing at an increasing rate, and the improper treatment and disposal of this waste is harmful to both human health and the planet.

So what's the solution? While no one expects you to stop purchasing new phones, laptops, and other devices, what you can do is consider where you're purchasing them from and how often in order to help improve the planet for future generations.

Keep Reading Show less

One night in 2018, Sheila and Steve Albers took their two youngest sons out to dinner. Their 17-year-old son, John, was in a crabby mood—not an uncommon occurrence for the teen who struggled with mental health issues—so he stayed home.

A half hour later, Sheila's started getting text messages that John wasn't safe. He had posted messages with suicidal ideations on social media and his friends had called the police to check on him. The Albers immediately raced home.

When they got there, they were met with a surreal scene. Their minivan was in the neighbor's yard across the street. John had been shot in the driver's seat six times by a police officer who had arrived to check on him. The officer had fired two shots as the teen slowly backed the van out of the garage, then 11 more after the van spun around backward. But all the officers told the Albers was that John had "passed" and had been shot. They wouldn't find out until the next day who had shot and killed him.

Keep Reading Show less
True

$200 billion of COVID-19 recovery funding is being used to bail out fossil fuel companies. These mayors are combatting this and instead investing in green jobs and a just recovery.

Learn more on how cities are taking action: c40.org/divest-invest


via msleja / TikTok

In 2019, the Washoe County School District in Reno, Nevada instituted a policy that forbids teachers from participating in "partisan political activities" during school hours. The policy states that "any signage that is displayed on District property that is, or becomes, political in nature must be removed or covered."

The new policy is based on the U.S. Supreme Court's 2018 Janus decision that limits public employees' First Amendment protections for speech while performing their official duties.

This new policy caused a bit of confusion with Jennifer Leja, a 7th and 8th-grade teacher in the district. She wondered if, as a bisexual woman, the new policy forbids her from discussing her sexuality.

Keep Reading Show less

How we talk about Black Lives Matter protests across America is often a reflection of how we personally feel about the fight for racial equality itself. We're all biased toward our own preferences and a fractured news media hasn't helped things by skewing facts, emphasizing preferred narratives and neglecting important stories, oftentimes out of fear that they might alienate their increasingly partisan and entrenched audiences.

This has been painfully clear in how we report on and talk about the protests themselves. Are they organized by Antifa and angry mobs of BLM renegades hell bent on the destruction of everything wholesome about America? Or, are they entirely peaceful demonstrations in which only the law enforcement officers are the bad actors? The uncomfortable truth is that both extreme narratives ignore key facts. The overwhelming majority of protests have been peaceful.protests have been peaceful. The facts there are clear. And the police have also provoked acts of aggression against peaceful demonstrators, leading to injuries and unnecessary arrests. Yet, there have been glaring exceptions of vandalism, intimidation and violence in cities like Portland, Seattle, and most recently, Louisville. And while some go so far as to quite literally defend looting, that's a view far outside the mainstream of nearly all Americans across various age, racial and cultural demographics.

But what if we step away from the larger philosophical debate and narrow things down to one very important fact: the vast majority of those stirring division at protests are white.

And if you don't believe me, just listen to Durham, North Carolina's mayor and what he had to say about how white people are "hijacking" Breonna Taylor's legacy and transforming a movement that has suddenly split Americans after having near unanimous support just a few months ago.


Keep Reading Show less