White nationalists led a torch march through the grounds of the University of Virginia on Friday night in Charlottesville, Va. Credit: Edu Bayer for The New York Times
How come nobody can let the past go and learn to love and respect each other?
A friend of mine who supports leaving Confederate memorials where they are posed that very question a few days ago. And it’s a good question. Why can’t Confederate sympathizers let go of the past? There’s a faction of Americans who believe that removing these memorials is an attempt to erase history of those who fought and died in historic battles. I disagree.
Image by Oscar Nilsson at unsplash.com
The problem isn’t so much that some white people don’t understand “white privilege.” The problem is potentially two-fold. First, they may not understand it by that specific name. I’d never heard of the term “white privilege” until a few years ago; but growing up in the south, I knew it when I saw it exercised … even with my eyes closed. Everyone in these United States recognizes the concept of white privilege when they see it. Don’t believe me? Take a look at this 1-minute video from educator, Jane Elliott.
VIRIN: 204700-U-HCW15–843.jpg, defense.gov
For some, it’s hard to believe issues of race, discrimination, and privilege still need to be addressed in 2017. But all anyone need do is have an in-depth conversation with a Person of Color about their direct experience in these matters to realize that racism is alive and well. With today’s polarized political opinions and rising numbers of hate crimes, it’s more important than ever that these conversations
Image by Tamarcus Brown, unsplash.com
A lot people say they want change, but a lot more people aren’t willing to do what it takes to bring about that change. I’ve seen this play out in a reality TV show and in my own community over the last week, each with markedly different results.
Image by Rob Bye, Unsplash.com
Let’s say you arrive at your favorite restaurant for a meal as soon as the doors open. You speak with the seating hostess and ask how long is the wait? She tells you there’s no wait and asks how many in your party. You respond one. (Roll with me on this, I hate eating alone in a restaurant, too.) She tells you to have a seat, you’re next.
Crayon portrait by Christian Faur
Before we can even begin to think about inclusion we have to talk about bias and exclusion.