Another senseless killing of a black man made national news this week. This time it was in Minnesota. His name was George Floyd, rest in peace. I won’t rehash the situation because, in my opinion, it doesn’t matter what he was doing. It matters that he was killed. His life mattered. Time after time, I have seen more dignity given to white male domestic terrorists than unarmed black men. And I am way past thoughts and prayers. I’ve had enough. I’m angry and deeply saddened for our country and for our children’s future.
White people. White women. White moms. What are we doing to our black and brown counterparts? Why are we tolerating these headlines? Why are we not demanding change and dictating how and when it happens? When will we all collectively have had enough?
We can – and must – do something. In fact, white people can make the biggest impact. The same privilege that made these officers feel entitled enough to restrict a man’s airway, also gives us enormous power to change how we handle race in this country. As a white woman married to an African American man, I am teaching our children daily to acknowledge racism and its many forms. We discuss what anti-racism looks like, what it means to have white privilege, and how our actions can change things and move our country forward for all Americans. We are not color blind, but rather color enthusiasts. Race is an encouraged, daily topic in our house. We talk openly about the good and the bad. We answer questions and listen too. We celebrate our differences.
We all have a role in this. So I beg you, mom to mom, please encourage these conversations in your house. Please make race a safe, important topic at your dinner table and in your minivan. Talk, listen, learn, research. We have the power to raise the next generation of white people to be kinder, more accepting and less fearful of our black and brown neighbors.
I am so tired of reading the news of another senseless killing. I am tired of having to explain racist brutality to my daughters. I am tired of fearing that my husband could be next.
But my tiredness has no weight compared to the utter exhaustion that must be felt by our black and brown friends every single day. They need us, white people, to take up this work and to demand change and they more than deserve for it to happen right now.