These past two weeks have been a time of deep reflection. As a White, middle-class, cis-gender, straight, able-bodied, female I have benefited from an immense amount of privilege. I feel fortunate to have studied in a graduate program where White Privilege, gender identity expression, racial identity expression, the oppression of individuals who are Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC), and systemic racism were openly and outwardly discussed and studied. However, I fully recognize that it has been through my privilege that in the last four years since graduating that I have not continued these conversations with the same commitment to learning, advocating, and teaching.
Moving forward, I will be a better ally.
I have been reading, sharing, donating, posting, signing, discussing, challenging, and listening. And this is just the beginning. If you know me personally or have followed along here, you will know that I have been actively trying to step in to challenging conversations when they arise, instead of shying away; trying my best to lean in with courage.
This has been a goal of mine for the past year or so, and I have admittedly fallen short.
It says right in my Instagram bio that I like to “skip the small talk and get right to the deep stuff.” Those are not just words, that is a call to action. I am here to share that I am not only committed to never shying away from the difficult conversations again, but that I am also committed to learning how to productively facilitate these conversations around anti-racism in the communities that which I am a part of.
This community included.
Although this platform is not far reaching, as I return to posting some content that is unrelated to this fight, please know that behind the scenes this promise has been made. It is my hope that as we continue to do this work (because this work requires all of us) that these conversations, stories, tweets, posts, do not fade to the background. Rather instead, I hope that they continue to inform and transform who we choose to be each day.
And lastly, I am here to tell you that I have built this platform on the pillars of kindness and gratitude. But, my dear friends, in the face of white supremacy, murder, and systemic racism, kindness and gratitude alone has not, and never will be, enough.