The community of Tulsa, Oklahoma is still recovering from the fatal police shooting of Terence Crutcher, an unarmed African American man. The officer who reportedly shot Crutcher was just formally charged with manslaughter.
On Wednesday, a teacher who works at KIPP Tulsa College Preparatory School — the school Crutcher's daughter attends — shared a heartfelt Facebook post about the impact of police shootings on students.
In the post, Rebecca Lee described how her school created "a space for kids to share their thoughts and feelings" in three smaller group discussions. Lee said that the group of fifth-graders that she spoke to were especially emotionally and confused about Crutcher's death.
"I wish white people could give us a chance," a 10-year-old girl said to Lee. "We can all come together and get along. We can all be united."
The sixth-grade students were reportedly heartbroken because Crutcher's daughter is in their class. Lee offered them her sympathy and her reassurance.
"We have different skin colors," Lee told the students. "I love you. You matter. You are worthy. You are human. You are valuable."
And finally, Lee said the seventh-grade students were angry about the tragic events, and hardened by the too-familiar pattern that they formed. Those students tried to determine what made Crutcher a target for the police, and realized it was because of his race.
"I share this story, because we are creating an identity crisis in all of our black and brown students," Lee wrote in the post. "We are shaping their worldview with blood and bullets, hashtags and viral videos. Is this how we want them to feel? Is this how we want them to think?"
Her Facebook post has received over 100,000 shares.
For those who want to help Crutcher's daughter and family, a memorial drive was created on GoFundMe. As of Friday, they had raised over $156,000 of their $200,000 goal.