Thanks for making social media a place of sharing and resistance today. The one silver lining I see is the scale of people mobilizing and watching out for each other. Appreciation for all the texts and contacts especially since I’m not near home. We have to stick together now, and support each other, not in a way were we tried to homogenize ourselves to support a political platform that couldn’t work that way (a failure of the Clinton campaign), but in a way where we can all broker justice.
To the Woke White friends,
Thanks for those of you who ride and die with us. Who are willing to make mistakes and do the hard work with us. To not be put off by our rage. I know some people might say I’m giving you a cookie, but I appreciate those of you who can begin with reconciling with the other side, because that’s not an option for us.
Dear White People (this line in reference to a movie, really, Dear White Friends),
Understand that your minority friends (non-White and LGBT people) are scared and angry and suddenly a lot more vulnerable than you. But understand we need you and want you with us to walk to that the promised city on a hill, together, toward justice.
You’ll might make mistakes, and people may call you out. It’s not because you are a “bad person” in the way racists are depicted on TV shows. We all make mistakes with this historical baggage. Know that getting called out is part of the work.
The world’s evils are most often perpetuated by otherwise good people. I’m sure plenty of Donald Trump voters wouldn’t mind sharing a beer with me, and I’ve probably shared one with some unknowingly this week in Texas, but it doesn’t mean their actions don’t harm us.
It’s going to be hard for you to navigate this because so many White people you know are like this and you’ll have to challenge them and yourself. But, that’s your part to play now.
I’ll borrow from Jesse Williams speech to make these points clear (I would be remiss to not mention it was Black people who tried to blockade this, especially Black women, who have been the backbone of Civil Rights from the beginning):
“And let’s get a couple things straight, just a little sidenote — the burden of the brutalized is not to comfort the bystander.That’s not our job, alright — stop with all that. If you have a critique for the resistance, for our resistance, then you better have an established record of critique of our oppression. If you have no interest- if you have no interest in equal rights for black people then do not make suggestions to those who do. Sit down.”
I’m about Justice now over Reconciliation. Resistance over Healing.
*Look, I dislike some of the privilege checking culture that gets used to only dismantle arguments, even if maybe correct in a moral universe, it does not help organize. I struggled with the idea of the truly poor Whites who would support Trump, especially in contrast to being born into an environment where education was encouraged with access to some of the best public schools from childhood to college. I wondered if I should check myself. But a line was drawn in the sand today.