This is the Best Way to Fight Racism
There's been a lot of talk about racism lately, right? And it's a topic maybe you feel has been over-discussed and dissected, but if there are people who are being treated unfairly, the conversation still has life in it because it means we're failing.
As a white woman, I don't have the right to say the world talks too much about racism, the same way men don't reserve the right to tell me when the gender equality conversation has reached an expiration date for their comfort.
The most important conversations to have are the uncomfortable ones. If we're tired of talking about it, let's all do our part to change it. Talk is cheap, but it opens the door to educated action and awareness, which are the true tools to spark movement.
I understand the various sides of the racism discussion: Some people think the world has gone overboard and is now teaching our children to be so politically correct that they are robots; Others think all cops are evil and the whole system is corrupt; Others think the racism discussion is a card minorities play. I can't say I agree with these arguments, but I can understand how people form opinions based on their experiences, so instead of faulting anyone for their views, I try my best to sit and listen and learn.
The best way to fight racism is to bring it into the light where we can openly see it, acknowledge it and work together to disarm it. We can be delusional and say racism will end one day, but I want to be real and say it's impossible because humans are so inherently flawed. Our ego, emotions and misguided opinions are something we pay more mind to than the truth. There will always be people who listen to the wrong voice, so all we can hope to do is permeate the surface of those we cross paths with.
I recently met up with a good friend of mine, Nakeda Lindsey, because I am a deeply curious person. I need to be up in my friends' grills to know what their experiences are, and I know she's someone who invites that sort of probing. I wanted to ask her about racism and to see the world through her lens if only for a bit.
I told her I wanted to talk about racism with her, so I could learn from her how she views the world and how it feels to be Black in this world. I could sit back with my white friends and wonder about it, or I could go straight to the source and talk about it and learn what I can do to do my part to be a beacon of light and support.
The video is below, and it's 45 minutes. Not once did we rant and rave about race. It's a light-hearted conversation about our differences, and truly the biggest take-away for me was that yes, racism exists, but you squash the power of racism by being stronger, calmer and kinder than they are.
If we all start doing that and start having conversations with people who look nothing like us, that strength could have the energy to slowly diffuse the fires of racism.
I hope you'll take a bit of time and watch at least some of it to remember that even if you're tired of the race conversation, it's not time to end it. It's time to lean in even further and listen. Learning is the best first step to let others know we want to walk with them.
I am not on social media (and I love not being on it!) but if you are, please know I'd be thrilled if you share any of my work. Be well.