Updated: October 4, 2017
This was written while I was living in France and working as a freelance writer for an organization named Save Our Legacy. However, in today’s society with the constant and no so subtle rhetoric that White lives are the only lives that matter, I really wanted to resurface this article that I hope will bring about healing. It’s sad that only 2 years ago 9 parishioners were brutally murdered in peaceful worship while their killer still harbors his bitterness and hate for all to see today. Not to mention, we look on at the mere fact that his life, dignity and respect was shown more honor by the police who handcuffed him than to many that died while being stopped by officers since. This article comes to you as a reminder that while time has changed, not much has changed around us concerning racism. Every person matters. We want all lives to matter. But I come to you unapologetically saying that Black lives do matter no matter what American society projects about us. So what can we do? What can we as a people do? We can choose to love every day. We can fight the urge to hate, the urge to be bitter. We can boss up and move when it comes to things that can help our lives, families, careers, finances and others do better and be people. We can unite with love.
Speak with Loved Ones at Home about Racism
We are deeply saddened by the horrific shooting in Charleston, South Carolina, which left nine worshipers dead. Our hearts and sympathy lie with the grieving families. Our hearts are also troubled because we know the shooter was indoctrinated with hate instead of love and his beliefs led him to become a murderer instead of a man of honor. A profound quote that echoes in our ears today by a lifelong servant-leader, Mahatma Ghandi is “You must be the change you wish to see in the world”. This statement was a warning and a challenge to those of power and influence in this nation. However, every one of us has a certain level of power and influence over those who love and depend on us for guidance and leadership. We can commit to consistent action to annihilate the existence of the kinds of societal ills that lead to devastating events like the Charleston shooting.
Walk into your Communities with Inclusion as Your Purpose
Do you initiate dialogue to share how humanity is a force that unites us all regardless of race, religion, ethnicity, sexual preference, gender or economic status? Wherever the disconnect lies we have to empower those around us through discourse about the idea of tolerance. Do your actions and
statements to those in your community show that you do not support and tolerate racist beliefs? Your
communities are wherever you spend most of your time; neighborhoods, work, school, gym and anywhere else. These are great opportunities during lunch breaks, gatherings, conferences and during other activities that interest you to pitch inclusion. Engage in conversation with those whose racial makeup doesn’t resemble your own; you’ll be surprised at your similarities.
Worship & Pray in Multi-racial Communities
Do you attend a church that is primarily all one ethnicity or race? Maybe you can visit a place of worship once a month or every two months that is filled with all races or invite others to your place of worship from other racial backgrounds. Praying, singing, holding hands and worshiping with people who do not look like you is liberating because it reinforces the power that we are all one and all have the same mission which is to be our best and serve our Creator. This idea may not be practical for everyone, but implementing this in some form is key to help eliminate racism as many of us have a form of worship that we practice daily and weekly.
Change indeed begins with us; in our homes, at work, at school, at holidays, on vacation, in worship and while out in our communities, we must devote each opportunity that we can to inclusion versus
exclusion. There are things that maybe outside of our comfort zones we each individually can do to
ensure that racism isn’t bred and doesn’t permeate in our territory. Let’s be a solution to ending the
pervasiveness of racism in America by implementing actions of inclusion, acceptance and mutual respect
Many of you heard the remarks that 45 made about Puerto Rican people. Did you do anything in your community or household to help Puerto Rico? Why or why not? Do you have to be from Puerto Rico to have compassion on Puerto Rican people? No. We don’t have to be White to hurt on the inside about all the lives that were hurt or lost by the mass shooting in Las Vegas at a Country Music Festival. Find something that you’re passionate about that doesn’t just help people who look like you or people who are where you’re from. Go out of your way to figure out a way to help someone else in need from another race and encourage others around you as well.
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