“No one is born hating another person because of the color of his skin, or his background, or his religion. People must learn to hate, and if they can learn to hate, they can be taught to love, for love comes more naturally to the human heart than its opposite.”― Nelson Mandela
Racism is not something that is new. It is something that has plagued this country for far too long. And while I have always been an advocate for equality for everyone, especially people of color, I realize that we have not done enough.
A little backstory about me: I started my very first blog in 2009 with two of my best friends. One of those friends, was Olyvia; my very first best friend that I met in the third grade (see photo above). Olyvia is smart. Olyvia is kind. Olyvia is also black. She was the first black friend that I had the pleasure of meeting. We quickly grew from friends to family and are still inseparable over two decades later. And while her ethnicity was never something that was a big deal to me, unfortunately it is for some people.
One thing you may not know about me is that I’m not a confrontational person by any means. I don’t like to “ruffle feathers” and make people feel uncomfortable. But after watching the horrific murder of George Floyd at the hands of the people who were hired to protect their community, I was left broken and speechless. How could any human being treat another human being like that and just throw away a life so carelessly? My sadness soon turned to anger and anger into self reflection. Sure, I myself am not racist but is that enough? No. I realize now more than ever that silence is violence. Not being racist is not enough anymore. We need to speak up and make our voices heard. We must be loud for our Black friends in our community, who’s cries for equality have not been listened to.
I am aware of my white privilege. It affords me a luxury that my Black friends, family and fellow human beings do not have. That’s why it is our responsibility as white people to demand change for them. It is our responsibility to educate ourselves on how to be an actively anti-racist so that we can educate others to do better. Now is the time to have the tough conversations about what is right and what is wrong. We must show up for our Black friends. Recognize our own bias’ and make changes that are long overdue.
Change starts with each and every single one of us.
Below are some helpful resources and additional ways we can all make a difference to support racial equity and justice.
• To donate to Floyd’s brother, Philonise Floyd, GoFundMe Page
• To donate to The Minnesota Freedom Fund
• To donate Black Lives Matter
• To donate to Reclaim the Block
• To donate to NAACP
• For Justice for George Floyd
• To donate to Campaign Zero
• To donate to The Bail Project
• To donate to ActBlue
• To donate to GirlTrek
• If you don’t have the means to donate, watch this video created by
Zoe Amira. All ad revenue will be donated to associations benefiting Black Lives Matter (be sure to turn off your ad blocker and don’t skip the ads).