The Must of Doing Better

I don’t know what to say.

“To be black and conscious of anti-black racism is to stare into the mirror of your own extinction,” said Ibram X. Kendi in his article “The American Nightmare.” 

I don’t know what to say.

“You don’t get to like start the fire then decide how we’re allowed to put it out,” said Vee Kativhu on her Youtube video on “why black people are angry and tired.

I don’t know what to say.

“I can’t breathe,” said George Floyd as an officer kept his knee on his neck for almost nine minutes.

I don’t know what to say.

Again and again, the pattern repeats. It’s easy to say that, isn’t it? “I don’t know.” It was the first thing I typed as I was looking at a blank page trying to muddle through my thoughts surrounding what’s happening right now. Or rather, what’s always been happening.

Racism is a familiar word in this country; it surfaces in everyday conversations, the media, and in our own homes. The reality is, it’s always been normal. With this in mind, Black Lives Matter isn’t a motto for a week or even a month, it’s something that should be engraved into our very beings. But somehow, it isn’t.

I don’t have all the answers to why we consistently reject this sentiment, but I do know that staying silent won’t fix anything. It might be terrifying to think you will say the wrong thing, but we can’t let our fear stop us. We have to try. The whole point of messing up is to learn from our mistakes and do better.

Doing better can take many forms:  protesting, donating, educating ourselves, and our family. The point is not to half-heartedly show our fleeting support for the movement; it is to actually strive for a change because in this world, it’s more than just about us. Countless lives have been stolen and will continue to be taken away if we keep pretending racism isn’t living within our social system and sometimes unconsciously within ourselves.

Change doesn’t happen with an “I don’t know.” It happens when we act, react, and do better.

Resources Where to Donate:

Petitions to Sign:

Listen & Learn:

Brene with Ibram X. Kendi on How to Be an Antiracist (Apple & Spotify) (Recommend!)