Racism sucks. It can literally suck life expectancy and skew the collective aptitude of those it is consistently imposed upon. It's impossible to measure the angst of a people who exist in a world that needles and jabs and provokes them to anger and then uses that outrage as validation for continued abuse. If there has been any benefit in the tragic wave of clear, tangible, often recorded evidence of this reality, it's the strengthened cohesion that happens when an entire community unites in defense of its right to exist
I'm excited about this mass unification of black people. I'm thrilled to see actors, athletes, entertainers and influencers united around solutions. Churches are expanding their missions to include social and environmental agendas, artists are using their talents to ignite a resurgence of pride, and people all over the country are supporting Black Lives Matter and other agendas dedicated to social equality. Black-owned businesses are also getting a much-needed boost. I was moved to real tears when I learned that in the weeks following the deaths of Alton Sterling and Philando Castile, 8,000 people had opened accounts at a black-owned bank in Atlanta. Come on, us! I am here for the 'wokeness' in all of its varying degrees. The implications of this shift has the potential to change the game henceforth and forever more. So while momentum is high let's set some ground rules for what support should look like from within. To ensure that nothing hinders this forward motion, let's take a quick team huddle to examine our internal 'isms.'
ClassismAlright fam, time to shut it down with the dismissive conceit that some display toward those they deem as "lower class" or dare I say, "ghetto." Rather than cringing in self-righteous embarrassment at your cousins 'n'em, how about allowing ourselves to exist, unapologetically, on the full range of the human spectrum? Or taking an active stance by mentoring and passing on whatever knowledge, access or privilege we might feel we've attained. Conversely, can we stop it with any internal beef, jealousy and/or shunning of those whose personal brand of blackness doesn't quite match our perception of what black people should look, act, talk or be like?
Religious discriminationDear, some churchy black folks, I can assure you that standing in perpetual judgement and criticism of everyone who isn't you is the absolute worst, most counterproductive recruitment technique in the world. And some of you seculars out there, please chill with the intellectual disdain for those who choose to practice religion. If it doesn't hinder your life, liberty or pursuit of happiness, can we just agree to let folks live? Please and thank you
ColorismCome on y'all...this argument is so tired that I can't even muster the energy to write it. Just stop it
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SexismWomen are not a collection of body parts. Women are not children to be trained, worked with or molded. Women do not increase or decrease in value based on titles (mother, daughter, wife, etc.) or roles in relation to men. Women are human beings.
HomophobiaPrejudice and discrimination is wrong...but you're here in the huddle so you already know that
' #BlackTwitter dropeth thine knowledge. Get it how you live so long as we all understand net worth doesn't determine actual value
I keep reading people on my timeline casually say, "winning and money trump everything." This scares TF out of me. There has to be more.— Latasha Kinnard, CEO (@latasha_kinnard) July 4, 2016'
Alright fam, this list is obviously not comprehensive. We need you to continue this conversation. What other 'isms' or internal divisions do we need to abandon in order to get about the business of creating this more perfect union? Comment below