I have always been and still am continuously inspired by Martin Luther King Jr’s messages and work. Right now we continue his work as we are in the midst of a collective push towards investigating and dismantling systems that have been oppressing the Black community and other communities of color for centuries. There seem to be two very opposite sides here: one actively resisting and blocking any and all change and one actively advocating for equality and wanting to rebuild a more equitable society.
“The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.”
– Martin Luther King, Jr.
We are in deep challenge and controversy, particularly for white people coming into the awareness of our own place in this society, and how we use our white privilege to remain complicit and resist and/or ignore the need for necessary changes both on a macro and micro level. We live in a society built on inequity, and this is the the time to find ways to do the work, make the commitment to keep doing the work, finding ways to learn, and committing to things that move the needle towards equality and systemic change. This is something that is going to take a lifetime, and more likely many lifetimes to accomplish, but my hopeful heart believes that it can happen.
With the death of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and other Black men and women, and as Black Lives Matter was ignited, I initially thought, “I’m not racist. I don’t need to do this work,” but after serious self-reflection, I realized that that attitude makes it clear that I absolutely DO need to do this work. I am a white person in a society build on white supremacy and I am not immune to the insidious beliefs and systems that oppress Black communities and People of Color. This work is crucial.
I am working slowly but surely on learning about myself, learning about Black perspectives and experiences, learning about how our society is built on white supremacy and white privilege and experimenting with ways I can be a part of the change. Here are some of the anti-racist resources I have found to be helpful and I wanted to share with you in case any of these resonates and you want to explore more.
Me and White Supremacy by Layla F. Saad
I joined an Anti-Racism Discussion and Resource Group that meets virtually monthly. We are currently working through this book and I find the journaling and reflection questions eye opening and insightful. It is helping me dig deeper on our society, our collective beliefs, and my individual beliefs and how these affect the Black community and People of Color. The group helps me stay accountable to doing the work.
I signed up to receive this daily email which contains education, resources, and action items. I always learning something here and it gives me the opportunity to take an action, whether donating money or giving ideas on how to take action.
I don’t have the answers, but I want to make the commitment to doing the work. This is where I have started and I will continue to do so, so please don’t hesitate to share anything and everything that is helpful, inspirational, and insightful for you.