I’ve been working on a post for about a week, it isn’t working. It was to be about Kap, the taking a knee and everything else that is woven into it. It isn’t working because all I’m doing is getting both mad and depressed, and it isn’t because NFL players are taking a knee. It’s because white people will never come together, listen, hear the plea for change, because we aren’t comfortable about talking about race, racism, the effects of racism that we aren’t affected by.
Instead, white people, (I’m white btw), who want to chastise the way the NFL players are protesting. Comments of; if you want a conversation then start a conversation, don’t protest. Suddenly, us white people are all ears and willing to have conversations about race, racism, the many blatantly racist actions, everyday racism, the systemic racism woven into every facet of society that African-Americans live their whole life with? Sure, that’s what we were waiting for…
How about, instead of chastising the NFL players, we (white people) proactively start those conversations and show how willing we are to have them. We can start with what it feels like when you read something that points out we are white people. Why talking about race, racism, privilege (or lack thereof) makes us squirmy, uncomfortable, embarrassed. Lets get over that first and prove we can take real conversations.
Lets look around and see how our privilege works compared to people of color around us. I’ve been consciously aware for a while now, it’s shameful when you see it, but being embarrassed by the fact and being afraid to admit it’s real allows it to stay that way. Look around this week in your daily life, be aware of the people you deal with, and whether you see yourself treated differently compared to people of color.
Come back and talk about it here.
Change must start with us, it’s our turn to carry the conversation.
PS. Kap is a TRA, his mom rocks – you can follow her on twitter here.