I’m tired of hearing people say …
“Racism doesn’t exist anymore.”
“Racism is a thing of the past.”
“None of my friend’s are racists.”
“I’m not a racist.”
Make no mistake, Racism is alive and well and prolific.
Racism is alive and well in your friend, your family, your neighbor, your local grocer, your car dealer, your local salesman, your politician, and your local cop.
Racism is alive and well, and it’s escalating. I believe the divide between rich and poor, republicans and democrats, US and the world is expanding rapidly.
Racism is alive and well, and people feel helpless, people feel unheard, people feel angry. Patience is running thin.
COLOR DOES MATTER.
Racism is alive and well, and it’s time to MAN UP.
Just say yes.
“Yes, my parents were racists.”
“Yes, my grandparents were racists.”
“Yes, I am uncomfortable talking about it.”
“Even though I was raised by racists and was taught to think like a racist, I don’t want to be a racist. I want to change.” “I want to BE THE CHANGE.” Because we are all part of one race … you’ve heard this before … the HUMAN RACE! HELLO!
So let’s start with the HUMAN RACE and acknowledge these 9 things.
1. We must acknowledge that THERE WILL ALWAYS BE RACISTS, to say anything different is TOTALLY NAIVE and, to be blunt, MORONIC.
2. We must acknowledge that the justice system is FLAWED and it FAILS MANY PEOPLE so we can’t continually be surprised when it FAILS OVER and OVER AGAIN.
3. We must acknowledge that people are only HUMAN. Let me repeat. We must acknowledge that people are only HUMAN. And as humans, we make mistakes. Sometimes, horrific, unforgiveable mistakes. For me, unforgiveable mistakes are any human who abuses a child, physically, emotionally, or otherwise. Those are hard ones for me to forgive. But I can’t CONTROL this, I can’t eradicate evil against children. However, I can make sure that I don’t abuse children. I can make sure than anyone in my circle of influence doesn’t abuse children (see #9). And I can effect change.
4. We must acknowledge that violence begets violence and that as frustrated, angry and defeated as we feel, meeting violence with violence will always end with more violence. We must take the high road and stop the madness. Even when it seems hopeless, meeting violence with VIOLENCE IS NEVER THE ANSWER.
5. We must acknowledge that as HUMANS, we shut down when we are met with violence including verbal and physical violence. I know this from yelling at my husband and kids. They don’t listen when I yell. They shut me out. Yelling does me absolutely NO GOOD and no good ever comes from it. If you want to be HEARD you have to be proactive NOT REACTIVE.
6. We must acknowledge that our world, while it may seem like it’s filled with HATE and GREED, is also filled with LOVE and KINDNESS. It’s two sides of the SAME COIN. It’s what we choose to focus on, fill our minds with and obsess on. Hate filled racism can be found everywhere, but so can love and kindness. It’s a choice.
7. We must acknowledge that injustices (including killing innocent men and women) happen daily. The number of child abuse and battered women cases are overwhelming. I could certainly spend a decade fighting just one of these causes, and I probably still wouldn’t make a dent in it. I’m proud to be from the town where M.A.D.D. was formed. I’m proud that Cari Lightner’s mom, Candace Lightner did something to stand up for her daughter’s senseless death at the hands of a drunk driver. I’m proud to be from that town (Fair Oaks). Even in the midst of senseless deaths and violent protests throughout our world, I still have faith that some good will come of it. However, I do not believe that violence was or is the answer.
8. We must acknowledge that we must work within our circle of influence FIRST. If every human being would take the time to affect the people in their CIRCLE OF INFLUENCE they would see that their circle will expand and grow larger and larger until they can affect REAL CHANGE. It really works. Don’t waste energy on things you can do nothing about, direct it toward things you can change. It will make you stronger. Be proactive NOT reactive. Reactive creates chaos. Proactive affects change.
9. Finally, remember the GOLDEN RULE – and you don’t need to be of a certain religion to practice this. It’s been written in some way or another in all walks of life, all religions, spanning thousands of years. It’s the way all HUMANS who share the same planet, same air, same soil NEED TO BE. Do unto others as you would have them do unto you. Live by this and you can be proud of who you are and be the change. Think about it. Do this with your children, your friends, your family, your neighbors, strangers, everyone—imagine how that might work if we all did that?
It’s each and every single human’s duty, living on this planet, in this world, in this solar system, to contribute in a positive way. CONTRIBUTE, HELP, LEND A HAND. Be Proactive. It works a whole lot better than violence, and it makes our world a much more pleasant place to live. Doesn’t it?