It’s not rocket science, the institutions that have implemented and enforced the racist policies that impact us all today, they are not gone. This is why I say, I know the importance of unity and sticking together, but individually we must be able to stand up and challenge every situation that we face. As we gradually begin to take personal responsibility for situations that happen to us in every racist situation, big or small, in every institution – medical, educational, workplace, corporate, legal, social, everywhere!
I was talking to my great aunt, well, she’s my grandmothers first cousin, we always talk. She is in her 70s, and so lovely, she tells me stories of being the first Black manager at AT&T years and years ago, and all the stories of racism, while overcoming to still make some of the most accomplishments while there. I have the same stories she has years later, and we share stories a lot, I am at least 40 years younger than her. We cannot ignore that a lot of these micro and macro aggressions are literally embedded in the framework and thinking of people. Even if let’s say, someone is naïve enough to believe that greater society has eradicated racism, the very fiber of how we interact is seen at work, where most people make a living, and social events/social activities, where most people gather. In these institutions, this is where many of these acts of racism are seen and the most impactful. The reason why I can go to the store right now and be confusingly greeted with “is there something you need?”, when the white person right before me was greeted with “hi, welcome, how may I help you?”, is because of the literal DNA of these institutions. I remember the most recent outrageous one was at the post office a few weeks ago; I literally walked in, fly as could be, and the post office worker was like “umm is there something you need?’ maybe because the post office is in an all white area, she was confused by seeing me – too bad for her, however, I said “I’m here for my health, no, obviously I’m here because I want to send out a package.” Again, I had just watched the white customers be greeted with joy and extra care as I stood in line. Why else would I be coming to your business if I didn’t need help? That is why I have an attitude in my response everytime and allow them to see their ignorance real time. You may not think it matters but, it helps not to be passive. This is a common occurrence in every institution I enter that requires me to receive customer service, and it’s because people are ignorant and think black people don’t require good service, or we should just be happy that someone is even talking to us. Watch very closely, that is why diversity and inclusion is a scam; they will include you, as long as they can still talk to you any kind of way. What we fight for is total liberation.
I am not passive with the little or the big things, because I have heard many people say we should overcome those little moments with kindness and kill their ignorance. My sisters and brothers, no! We have been kind through slavery, jim crown, civil rights, and now Black Lives Matter, all while being the only people in the world to not receive reparation’s or any kind of bill protecting us as every other group has. Different name, same fight, you may not see a plantation but as I said in Tuesday’s blog post, they still behave as if the plantation is there. So we are constantly running away from the plantation, we should not be compliant or passive on the plantation, the pseudo slavemasters need to know that we do not accept micro or macro aggressions against us and that we will fight everytime, and we won’t stop until they are eradicated, just like the Asians did to receive the Anti-hate bill, you get me?
I like to bring things down to a micro level often, so people understand me. If you are in a relationship, and the person keeps disrespecting you, the day you finally stand up, they may laugh and think you are not serious, until you show them that their disrespect could cost them the relationship. The relationship between whiteness and Blackness, (as I wrote about in this blog post) and unfortunately the entire world that has taken on a whiteness stance towards the treatment of Black people, is very toxic, yet the world depends on Blackness and Africa’s resources to sustain every institution. Passiveness is not how we regain control of our livelihoods and resources, active challenging makes it easier for us to be a united front.
What will you do to stand up today?
Be sure to check out my Decolonize Your Mind webinar to learn how to unify and regain control of our thinking!