Posted on June 10, 2020
For this month’s newsletter, I first want to share a quote by Bene Brown that is really resonating with me:
“Normal never was. Our pre-Corona existence was not normal other than we normalized greed, inequity, exhaustion, depletion, extraction, disconnection, confusion, rage, hoarding, hate, and lack. We should not long to return, my friends. We are being given an opportunity to stitch a new garment: one that includes ALL of humanity and NATURE.”
The way we have been living is not normal. The way we’ve been treating ourselves, each other and our home, the Earth, is not normal.
What’s it going to take for us humans to wake up? What’s it going to take for us to speak up and be vocally anti-racist and not just quietly non-racist?
What can we do? What can I do to empower movement for social justice of all POC and put an end to police brutality and white supremacy?
Who am I to take a stand?
These are questions I’ve been pondering the last few weeks since the horrific murder of George Floyd. And to be honest, I really don’t know. I am a novice when it comes to being an activist and truthfully, following current affairs. Admittedly I am seeing how I’ve been sticking my head in the sand out of “protection” for my empathic-ness and sensitivity, and I do believe some of that is necessary, and I am also finding there comes a time when we need to look. We need to bear witness to the injustices all around us and say something, act, and not let cruelty go unnoticed.
I want to stop hiding behind my fear of saying the wrong thing, looking ignorant or stirring up “messes” that could potentially negatively affect my life. How privileged am I that I even have a choice not to look? Not to say something? How privileged am I that I can hide from it and deny it’s truth?
I’ve truly been at a loss these last few weeks. I’m not saying there isn’t a silver lining, because I know there is. I’m not saying we haven’t learned a lot from Covid, we have.
What I’m saying is that I have been deeply saddened in how we’ve come to treat each other – our brothers and sisters – with such hate and malice. I’ve been mourning all the Black Lives we’ve lost to police brutality and stupidity. I’m grieving for there lives not lived and stopped abruptly. I’m grieving for the shock of their families. I’m just letting myself grieve.
I don’t need to move on from here yet. I don’t need to make it into a spiritual lesson yet. I don’t need to try and create a reasoning. None of that. Just here, in the grief. Using the momentum from the anger I feel as a catalyst to start where I can, and that’s by educating myself.
I’m honoring their Spirit by allowing the grieving process and doing the only thing I know how too from my place of white privilege, starting a book club on White Fragility with other white women to expand our knowledge and hopefully generate discussion that brings new awareness and creates change. (I’m also innocently and ironically laughing at the whiteness of this)
But even that just feels like a tiny pebble among billions and billions of grains of sand. It doesn’t feel like enough, but it’s a start. I’m grateful to all those fighting for justice, peacefully protesting, standing up and using their voice, praying for peace, and who are willing to join the conversation and are no longer willing to normalize inequality. I stand with you, as best as I can and know how. I commit to learning, growing, and stitching a new garment — one that works for EVERY-BODY.
Lastly, I wanted to share this writing that I found on Facebook. I posted it myself from a friends page, and it bears repeating.
I am white. And female. I am a citizen of the United States of America.
Here is what I know:
If I were suspected of using counterfeit money, chances are I would be asked to leave the store, but in the case that the police were called, I would NOT be thrown to the ground and mounted with knees in my neck. I WOULD STILL BE ALIVE. #GeorgeFloyd #ISTILLcantbreathe #blackwhileshopping
If a friend who was under investigation sent a package to my house, would the police have entered my home in the middle of the night unannounced with full force and engaged my boyfriend in a firefight that killed me where I lie in my bed? No. It is likely they would have decided to question to me first, and I WOULD STILL BE ALIVE. #BreonnaTaylor #blackwhilesleeping
If I was playing video games with my nephew, and left my door open for some fresh air and a neighbor called the police to come CHECK ON ME, the police would not have shot me through my window and lied about seeing a weapon on me. I WOULD STILL BE ALIVE. #AtatianaJefferson #blackwhileathome
If I were pulled over with my significant other and young child in the car and disclosed to the officer that I had my legal weapon in the vehicle, I would NOT be shot while reaching for my license in front of my child and spouse. I WOULD STILL BE ALIVE. #PhilandroCastile #blackwhiledriving #blackwhilecomplying
If I were accused of selling cigarettes on the sidewalk and there was an escalation leading to my arrest, I would not have been tackled by 5 officers. I would not have been choked to death while repeating that I could not breathe while one officer refused to stop choking me and another pressed my face into the pavement. I WOULD STILL BE ALIVE. #ICANTBREATHE #EricGarner #blackwhilestanding
If I was an active duty Marine Sergeant who was just in a car crash with my two daughters, and failed to show my hands to officers while showing a “mean” expression I would NOT have been shot and killed in front of my daughters. In fact, I would have probably received the fastest ambulance response available for myself and my daughters. Regardless, I WOULD STILL BE ALIVE. #ManuelLogginsJr #blackwhileinneed
If my family and I were in search of food and shelter after one of the nations most horrific natural disasters, I would NOT have been shot in the back and killed next while the remaining 5 members of my family were wounded in the gunfire, and one other killed. I WOULD STILL BE ALIVE. #RonaldMaddison #JamesBrisette #blackwhilesurviving
If I was suspected of a crime, and when stopped and asked for identification by police I reached for my wallet, I would not have been shot 19 times as an unarmed person. I WOULD STILL BE ALIVE #AmadouDiallo #blackwhilewalking #blackwhilecomplying
This is not just about good cops and bad cops and poor judgement. Because there are things that lead UP to this.
If I were birdwatching in a public park, and a woman came around the corner with her dog off leash, then refuse to leash him when I asked her to, would she have weaponized calling the police as a means to intimidate me? Would she then have falsely claimed on that call that I was threatening her life and safety? No, she would not have. #ChristianCooper #BlackWhileBirdwatching
Oh, you’re tired of reading? I am TIRED of people of color being senselessly murdered and then vilified afterwards.
I will NEVER know what it is to walk in the shoes of any person of color. But I do know that it is my job to stand beside EVERY person of color and become an activist that helps dismantle the system that has been set up to empower me and people who look like me to get away with acts of hate every single day.
(I did not write this- full credit to original poster Jillian Marie)
In condolences of all #BlackLivesMatter lost,