We are losing so many to pandemics of illness, violence, and rage.
Many of you are struggling with what to do next in the face of racialized injustice. I certainly don’t have any answers. I’ve spent a lot of my life under the radar, trying not to draw the attention of lethal force, so I don’t feel like the best person to speak with authority on how to bring about change and social justice. I literally have just tried to stay alive.
But here’s what I’m thinking about now. Begin anywhere. Every morning I remind myself that I’m not dead. I literally speak those words out loud, “I’m not dead.“ I do this to speak into the world the truth that poet Lucille Clifton put in a poem: that every day something has tried to kill me and failed. I struggle with you. So maybe it’s time for me to start working past not being dead and start working towards being alive.
I would add to the insight below from poet Gregory Orr: turn your words back into the world. Repeat the cycle. Create an alternating current that powers your desire for social justice. Words matter. Words help me live into the world with more courage. Words power change. And change powers words. And that alternating current creates electricity that powers our desire for social justice.
So talk with your friends; talk with your neighbors; speak with your community leaders. If you’re white, listen and bear witness. If you’re black, don’t be afraid to make your opinion, heart, and mind known. Speak out from the shadows. Let’s strive not for equality but for justice. The difference is subtle but important. Because in America we’re not the same. But to live well together, everyone has to belong. ✊🏽 🌈