Saturday, June 6, 2020

one voice in the revolution

What happens when you've grown up in the company of individuals who freely exchanged racist jokes without any recognition that you might be personally hurt, fundamentally offended by their "humor" at the expense of "people like you"? What does it mean to have been taught to check Hispanic/Latinx on every form you've ever filled out but to have never had to worry about racial profiling?

What is the role of someone now who is very privileged but also not of utmost whitecismale privilege?
I've spent a lifetime coming to terms with the nuances of my identity and my belonging; embracing "who I am" to myself and to the world (thus I will never change my last name, but that's a story for another day). And somewhere around thirty, a sweet, knowing acceptance seeped in. Hallelujah! Yet the hard work very much continues. Because I was born into an obscenely unjust world, with racist systems and dark histories and normalized oppression.
We all were.
I cannot speak to what it feels to be white right now because I am not U.S.-white; though I have regularly been mistaken for being so, and have definitely benefitted from those assumptions (see: white privilege). Nonetheless, those of us who are not-Black need to take on the uncomfortable tasks in this moment of deep pain, trauma, and loss that's been compounded by centuries of more of the same.
We must use our collective power to transform this broken world of ours. Tu lucha es mi lucha. Below, a few actionable ideas from the U.S. I welcome your ideas, too.