Day 78: Dear non-white friends, how can I help?

I don’t want to be another white person squawking about my opinions of racism online. I think we’ve heard enough. A long time ago I would have been one of those people that denied white privilege even existed. I’ve changed a lot since then. I’ve seen more of the world. I’ve broadened my horizons. I’ve opened my mind. I’ve left my tiny predominantly white community in the Midwest, and I’ve learned that I am indeed quite privileged to be a white person in America.

And now I want to help. I want to be a voice to those who still face injustice, bigotry, and mistreatment in this country. I think good place to start is to acknowledge what it means to experience privilege on account of your skin color. It’s crazy to me that so many people still don’t understand this. There are plenty of articles online worth reading that help dismantle the myth that white privilege doesn’t exist. Part of the problem is that people don’t understand what white privilege means. It doesn’t mean that white people don’t suffer. And it doesn’t mean that white people haven’t worked hard for the things they have. It simply means that there are struggles a person will face on account of their skin color that a white person simply won’t have to deal with. This article from tolerance.org puts it nicely:

“White privilege is not the suggestion that white people have never struggled. Many white people do not enjoy the privileges that come with relative affluence, such as food security. Many do not experience the privileges that come with access, such as nearby hospitals. And white privilege is not the assumption that everything a white person has accomplished is unearned; most white people who have reached a high level of success worked extremely hard to get there. Instead, white privilege should be viewed as a built-in advantage, separate from one’s level of income or effort.”

But acknowledging one’s privilege simply isn’t enough. I need to do more to ensure that the future is one that provides equity to all. So I’ve decided to ask some of my black friends the best way that I can help put an end to unequal treatment of people of color. And here are many of the resources shared with me:

https://www.forbes.com/sites/danabrownlee/2020/06/01/dear-white-people-here-are-10-actions-you-can-take-to-promote-racial-justice-in-the-workplace/?fbclid=IwAR06xbp6MwJ6CkGp1qnuQH-803oq4tqn4qORgIxixFWJ_6TjnPfXhZVmTRw#96d5df54a92e

https://nmaahc.si.edu/about/news/national-museum-african-american-history-and-culture-releases-talking-about-race-web?fbclid=IwAR12A2n6cowd2pE3tsb3r0zN_ZDW9uvxC05qiuznXi-TNH25OwypjBjisfA

https://www.communityjusticeexchange.org/nbfn-directory?fbclid=IwAR1G9AeqvtqI1g4ie3X9W9hWDNBRXJT6UEowGTZ35u3bi-ygVrxK_9ViETo

To summarize, there are many things we can do to help promote racial justice in the United States. We need to promote accountability especially in the police force. we must strive to educate ourselves about the plates minorities face in this country. And we must address our preconceived ideas that often lead to misunderstandings and exacerbate the problems. If you haven’t already diversified your friend group, consider branching out of your community and getting to know more people of color. Support businesses that promote racial justice and those that are owned by people of color. We must challenge stereo typical beliefs and speak out when we see injustice in our community. Also, we must hold our Friends and family accountable. Nowadays, there is no reason to tolerate racist jokes, remarks, and other ignorant statements. Call it out when you see it. Be the change you were community needs. Embrace the future. Let’s work together to make a future that’s bright for everyone.

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