Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Ending Racism, From A Gay White Perspective!

I am white. I am gay. I am gender queer. I am also against racism. But I wasn't much concerned with it until I experienced homophobia and hatred as an out and proud queer.

While homophobia and racism are not precisely the same, there are many similarities. Enough so that I finally had an awakening to continued racism and how if I say nothing, I am just as guilty.

The problem is many white folks I have spoken to don't feel comfortable having conversations about race. Mainly because in most folks minds, racism ended a few decades after desegregation. An idea that is 100% false.

Here is a short list (just a few examples, it by no means indicates there aren't more effective ways to end racism) of what we as the white community can do to help end the racial divide:

1) Educate yourself. Read blogs, books, listen to perspective. 
2) Socialize. We tend to gravitate to familiarity. Step out of your comfort zone.
3) Volunteer. Ask local organizations where you could be of use . Non profits and social movements need all kinds of skills and resources! Extra hands are almost ALWAYS needed. 
4) Be open to being wrong. Many of us were unknowingly taught things that have been unknowingly passed down generation ally. While hard to swallow, sometimes change involves bitter realizations. 
5) Shut down racist remarks. No need to speak on any ones behalf, but, let people know that YOU are uncomfortable with racism, even jokingly or passively. 
6) Be sensitive to many people of color have directly experienced racism and it hurts. Sensitivity to this is extremely important to change. Be aware of what you say, and ultimately, what you think.

If you have more to add, please comment! Share the knowledge! 

With Love
Jeff

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