I am at Off the Page today, talking about the cost of me not wanting to do the uncomfortable work of talking about race. Sometimes, people ask me why I talk about race as much as I do. I seem to bring it up a lot. Why should it matter? Why do I always have to think everything is about race?
I bring up race, I retell the story of my own awakening to my own internalized racism because the cost of not is too great. My brothers and sisters of color are paying too high a price for my wanting to stay “safe” and “comfortable.” They don’t have that choice. If the only work that I can do is to re-tell the stories of my own awakening then I will tell them. If you have been reading for awhile some of this will likely sound familiar.
We live in a society that perpetuates racist thoughts. What I have watched and listened to my whole life has encouraged my mind to think one way. The wrong way. I don’t like admitting I have racist thoughts.
It was really, really uncomfortable for me to realize I had some internalized racism. It was really hard for me to look myself in the mirror and face the fact.
But you know what’s worse than me having to face that about myself? My friend’s fear that her husband and son will be killed by the police, or a vigilante, or otherwise harmed by someone who fears them because they are black and young and therefore seen as a threat. I do not have to tell my children to operate a certain way in the world in the hopes that they will be treated fairly, but she does.
You can read the rest here.