Everyone is releasing a statement. Literally even my accounting firm say they are supporting their “customers” and they won’t stand for it. There are lots of articles just calling bs, mostly because of how late they released these statements and how these places are known for racist practices. The Black struggle is in the news all of a sudden because wypipo have taken notice. It’s almost like we’ve been saying the way we are treated is shitty for centuries and all of a sudden wypipo woke up and saw it too. Just like it takes one of them to repeat something we have already said for the others to pay attention. They can only hear it from their own and we have been telling them to tell their own for years now. I honestly don’t know why this latest shooting is the bean that tipped the scale but it did. Will the scales be tipped in our favor until real structural change comes or will Wp get tired and give up along the way?
A few White friends of mine have said they are thinking of me and can’t imagine what it must feel like. One said I am really worried about you. I am praying for you. I said to one of them I’ve been in this skin longer than you’ve been contemplating if you believe my struggles or not. My people have survived all these centuries. We are resilient; we ain’t going nowhere. I think I surprised her. It probably felt flippant or nonchalant but there isn’t much to say beyond don’t just pray; fight for me! Because you know me and I am a great friend, you will give each Black person you meet the benefit of the doubt and offer them respect because you respect me. You will seek to educate yourself about my people and the movement, and you will check your own privilege.
Some Black folkx I know don’t fuck with White folkx. They think no good can come of it. I am that moderate Black person who will give you the benefit of the doubt and allow you to prove yourself. I will even offer you space and resources to help you grow, until you prove to me that you don’t have my best interest at heart or you are defensive or never want to mention race or want to explain my experiences away. Then I slowly remove myself. Again, if we are still friends then consider yourself lucky and do something besides pray and worry about me. Make some other Black friends. For most of you, I’m your only Black friend. Remedy that!
A week ago I was in a healing circle for POC and when we got to the point of letting go of things, I said: “I’d like to let go of the expectations I have of my White friends that they will take action on my behalf. I needed to be ok with these friends finding themselves on the wrong side of history. I need to cut them lose. Our facilitator wrote this down and then proceeded to burn the slip of paper. Have I let go yet? Somewhat, but it is really difficult not to wonder what they are doing after they call or text me.
In any case, it’s been a really interesting three weeks. I have gone from catatonic to attending my first march since I lived in the Bay Area to taking some time off to breathe and reconnect and recharge. If feels like this time we are in it for the long haul and I need to gird my loins. There are some rumblings of change in the institution I work for. I am hopeful but trying not to hold my breath. Charges are being brought. Defunding is being talked about. It seems like we just need more woke people on our side. A coffee company was under fire. People seem to be banding together to change things. I want to hope again, but I am cautious that perhaps it’s too soon.