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“The Dark of Broad Daylight” and Other Thoughts on Racial Justice

Dianne Earley has long been a champion of diversity and transformation. The recent protests have prompted powerful feelings and memories, which she shares here with the hope of furthering the all-important conversation about race.

Editor’s note: The perpetually overdue conversation about race is growing louder, and we’re sure this is the path to healing and justice. The co-founders of NextTribe are two white women who know it’s vital to be more inclusive, to publish other voices, and to use this platform to open minds and show life from different perspectives. We are thrilled that Dianne Earley has shared her thoughts and poems here. We also welcome others to add their opinions and experiences on the seismic shift this country is going through. Please contact us at editorial@NextTribe.com. 


Quiet time – Alone at home 

So I penned this Corona poem…


This Covid world is upside down

And we all live in Crazy Town

In between our zoom calls

Exercise and walks and all 

We’re creating homemade masks

And finding peace in mundane tasks


Wearing gloves to check the mail

Binging Netflix epic fails 

Hulu, Prime, broadcast tv

With shows we never thought 

We’d see 

Videos and texts we’ve seen

With animated gifs and memes

Of unhinged no-mask-wearing fools

Breaking state and local rules


Happy moments sprinkled in

Then Crazy Town erupts again 


Anti-distancing beliefs

Disrupting Dr. Fauci’s briefs


Trump’s tweet show

Lifting bans as cases grow

Glad to be up on the news

But it sure gives me the blues


Protests rage across the nation

Claiming masks are a violation 

3 months late but finally…

A bit of justice for Arbery 

40 million unemployed

And a working cop kills George Floyd

Covid 19 ills are mounting

100,000 deaths and counting 

And Amy Cooper calls 911

On a bird-watching brother just out for fun


I told you, we’re in Crazy Town

Where lots of crazy stuff goes down


These trying times they feel so wrong 

And yet… the struggle makes us strong

So take a minute…Reset your mood

Greet challenges with fortitude 

Pray for those in great harm’s way

And fight the fight for right each day 

racial injustice

Author Dianne Earley


When fear steals pride

And pride whips hope

And hope just fades away

When young men don’t believe

They’ll live to see another day

When anguish buckles parents’ knees

And their tortured screams ignite

Because their children’s dreams were snatched

In the dark of broad daylight

It makes me wonder who we are

And how it is that we

Became adrift from what our GOD

Intended us to be


We have ourselves to blame

From lynching trees to shooting sprees

We should be


Read More: Owning Up to My Own Racism: A First Step Toward Creating Change

“Spot Check”

On Sunday afternoons my parents would take us out for rides sometimes. We’d look at houses nicer than the one we lived in and dream. Or else we’d drop in on relatives who never seemed to mind and play games outside with cousins.

Freeze Tag…Double Dutch…Red Light Green Light

On the way home we’d stop at the High’s Store on 12th and Newton for ice cream or fruit punch. But one day as my sister and I had just crawled into the backseat with our treats and my father was about to pull away from the curb, a policeman rolled up behind us and ordered him out of the car. When my father asked why, the policeman yelled, “spot check.” I remember my father saying “Wait… what’s that? I’m just out with my family for a Sunday drive,” as his hands were forced to the roof of the car.  Through the windshield I watched my father’s face twist in discomfort, confusion and embarrassment as he was told to spread his legs and was patted down. Then the policeman stepped back, said something over the radio and left as we all watched in silence. It was over in minutes. No explanation. No arrest. No apology.

Spot Check was just a mean cop’s game.

We didn’t go straight home. Instead we went to the 12th precinct on Rhode Island Avenue in Brookland where my sister and I were instructed to sit on a bench while my parents “spoke” to some guys in uniform behind a desk. I don’t know what was said.  I will never know, because my family never spoke of it again.  But I could guess.


Dianne Earley is an executive and life coach and former sales and operations business leader. Throughout her corporate career, she has been a champion of diversity and transformation. In 2016, Savoy Magazine named her one of the “Top Influential Women in Corporate America.” Dianne is a graduate of the Northwestern University School of Communication, an alumna of the NAMIC Executive Leadership Development Program at UCLA’s Anderson School of Management and the Betsy Magness Leadership Institute. 

By Dianne Earley


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