I think it’s safe to say that white supremacy in America has been more out in the open than it has been since the civil right’s movement, only it is now worse thanks to the internet.
Activism against racism is rising to the surface more than ever, thanks to the internet as well.
Where I live, it is a really bad idea to be white and wandering around suburbs late at night by yourself, and it is a much much worse idea to be white and wandering around the apartment complexes in my town. My Dad says it may be gang affiliated, which is a good guess, but it could also be a matter of argument over CI drugs (CI drugs, class one drugs, are “street drugs”). If you are caught by an officer in possession or are in the company of someone possessing them, you go straight to jail.
Last night my Dad told me that a second double homicide was committed a few blocks away from us. Just like the last shooting we had.
Most of the people who are in gangs and are drug dealers are people of color. It is a fact that I am sick to my stomach to say, but it is the truth, and it breaks my heart.
If I ever am held at gun point in my life where I live, I wouldn’t be upset because of the gun pointed at me. I would be upset because the person pointing it would most likely be a person of color trying to get rid of a witness, and that breaks my heart.
Every single time something like this happens near me it breaks my heart. I grew up around here. There are just as many POC as there are white people. That could mean that the person pointing the gun not only might likely be a POC, but somebody I could have grown up with.
That thought doesn’t just break my heart, but shatters it into a million pieces. Over and over again, every time that thought crosses my mind.
Watching people of color destroy each other is the most heartbreaking thing I have ever had to deal with in my life.
It is so painful as a white ally standing against racism, because using your voice while your throat is completely choked up with tears is more difficult than any POC will ever know. Even when I put in the work day to day, stuff like this still happens in a neighborhood like mine.
It affects my mental health.
White people say to me the same old thing over and over: “Don’t talk about racism if it’s going to make you upset every time. Stop trying to be the poster boy/girl for self-righteous indignation. Accept the things you cannot control”.
White people stopping their activism when they realize how dangerous it can be to be a true white ally is the reason the racism keeps happening. Just like men stopping their activism against accused sexual predators when people see the danger or drama you could put yourself in by being a male ally IS WHY IT KEEPS HAPPENING.
Have the balls to amplify your cause regardless of who tries to silence you. The more they try to keep you silent, the closer you get to actual change.
You have to build a very thick skin, but the rewards of growing it are more than worth it. Remind yourself of that the next time you feel your back is against the wall when you have an instinct telling you that you should be the one who finally says something because obviously nobody else will.
Be brave. The rewards of bravery are worth their weight in gold.