Kaleth O. Wright, the highest-ranking enlisted leader in the U.S. Air Force, said Monday that racism doesn’t care about titles or stature as he denounced the death of George Floyd.
“Who am I? I am a Black man who happens to be the Chief Master Sergeant of the Air Force,” Wright, the second Black person to become the Air Force’s top enlisted member, wrote in a 31-message Twitter thread.
“I am George Floyd…I am Philando Castile, I am Michael Brown, I am Alton Sterling, I am Tamir Rice,” Wright continued, invoking the names of Floyd, who died last week in Minneapolis after a white police officer knelt on his neck, and other Black men who have been killed by police.
Wright expressed his outrage at “watching another Black man die on television before our very eyes,” saying his “greatest fear” was waking up to a report “that one of our Black Airmen has died at the hands of a white police officer.”
He acknowledged his own struggles with the Air Force’s “demons” of diversity in top roles, and revealed he was working on a “thorough independent review” of its military justice system, which the Air Force Times reported Monday has been accused entertainmentyoga.com of disproportionately punishing young Black service members.
“You might think you know what it’s like to grow up, exist, survive & even thrive in this country as a Black person, but let me tell you, regardless of how many Black friends you have, how Black your neighborhood was, or if your spouse or in-laws are Black… You don’t know,” Wright wrote.
“You don’t know the anxiety, the despair, the heartache, the fear, the rage and the disappointment that comes with living in this country, OUR country every single day,” he added.
Read Wright’s full thread below:
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