Stop Pretending You Aren’t Racist
Today, I don’t really care to make sure the syntax or stylistic flow of my blog is absolutely perfect. I do not really care to read, edit, reread, and re-edit the blabbity blabbity blah. My heart is just sore from thinking about all of the massive injustices that are happening right now, specifically those of the US. The shootings, the police violence and the hate is overwhelming. People are making such hostile comments toward one another and the disunity is discouraging. I sit here stressing over fundraising ideas for a mission trip I am taking soon (yeah, working on trusting God for it) and I just cannot help but to refocus every so often on Obama’s speech that I woke up to this morning about the shooting in Dallas.
Can I just be real honest for a minute? I’m white. Being white is great. Yay white people. What I’m about to say isn’t to bash on Caucasians, but rather I’d like to foster a new way of thinking in this age of racial and social catastrophe.
A lot of us need to stop pretending that we aren’t racists. (Yes, I really did say that.)
I think when most of us think of racism, we imagine people who are vicious and outwardly hateful toward other races. We think of the Black Panthers and KKK and other types of racial supremacy groups. I’m no history buff, and I don’t know much about the civil rights movement. But I do know that sometimes I get uneasy around black men when I’m in Flint on a coffee run. I do know that I get surprised sometimes to see black people driving nice cars and having nice things. And you know what? That is wrong of me. I am wrong when I think those things, God forgive me.
I was raised and still live in a predominantly white community. Predominant feels like an understatement, actually. In some ways, I was both subtly and directly taught what to think about black people as a child, and most of it wasn’t good. There were a lot of jokes thrown around by my friends and unfortunately by some of my family. I love them all to death, but the racism that came from their words was real, it happened. Unfortunately, these distasteful like have already made an impact on me and my thinking. My mind is already bruised and infected with thoughts of “knee-jerk reaction” racism and I hate that.
I think if we would just be open about our struggles, showing vulnerability in conversation, we could bring people together. We can actually get to know one another up close. We can step out from behind the binoculars that help us look at and judge people from a distance where we are comfortable and ignorant.
We were all taught different things about the many types of people growing up. Everyone has bias about certain places, things, people, music…you name it. Bias is basically inevitable. But people are the most valuable part of creation. Man and woman, black and white, gay and straight, whatever differences you want to call into play… people are the most valuable thing in existence on earth, and as followers of Jesus we ought to start acting like it.
So many people have tried to make this point. So many people have written blogs about this stuff that I wonder if this piece is useless. But I don’t want to let that keep me silent. Please, reach out to the black and white communities around you. Let’s work together and be honest and understanding. I pray that we love like Jesus did, stepping into the filth of others’ lives, like the racism and hate we need to be processing and ridding ourselves of. Please, get involved and love people.
I love you guys.