Dear Fellow White People

Dear Fellow White People, 

I am writing to you as a fellow white person and I hope that you will continue reading despite 

whatever possible preconceived ideas you may have of what I’m going to write. 

These past few weeks have been a whirlwind, an experience that pales in comparison to that of a 

Black person. If perhaps you live under a rock or without access to the internet, the situation I am 

referencing is the murder of George Floyd, among other Black individuals, and the subsequent 

protests. Some of you may view this situation as something that happened suddenly and believe 

it blew up way too quickly, but the reality is that it is a situation that has been centuries in the 

making. 

George Floyd is not nearly the first black person murdered by the police. This has been 

happening for decades, if not centuries. Violence towards Black people has been happening for 

even longer. I have lived a life of white privilege, so the first time I remember hearing about a 

black person being murdered for no reason and it having sparked national outrage was when 

Trayvon Martin was killed. Martin was a 17 year old man who was murdered by a white 

neighborhood watchman. I didn’t know what to think about the events at the time because I was 

12 years old and existed within the uninterrrupted bubble of whiteness that all white people grow 

up inside of. I am embarrassed to say that I was uneducated on what exactly was happening 

because I didn’t have to be and I’m aware that almost every black kid in America knew exactly 

what was going on because they had to be. 

Today, I get why. I understand why people are protesting right now. I understand why the Black 

community is frustrated and angry. Many white people mistakenly believe that racism ended 

after the Civil Rights movement, but that is definitely not the case. Just because racism that could 

be seen clearly, such as segregation, was outlawed does not mean that it went away. And just 

because you don’t think you’ve ever seen people being racist, doesn’t mean it isn’t occurring at 

all or in different ways. Racism is more than just saying and doing blatantly racist things. It is a 

mindset that one has and a system of institutions enable and sustain those mindsets. In this day 

and age, racism happens more so through systems and microaggressions. These look like not 

hiring someone due to their last name which may seem “ethnic”, assuming someone is Black 

doesn’t know their dad, or playing hip-hop music whenever you’re around black people. It 

means going to a college located in a city with a large Black population and attending a college 

which is composed of less than 10% Black students. It means a lack of socio-economic mobility 

for Black people, redlining, unhealthy eating choices concentrated in majority-Black 

communities, gentrification, and police brutality. 

There have been, and continue to be, many situations where Black people are targeted and 

harassed because of the color of their skin. There is case after case of Black people being 

murdered during arrests for committing minor crimes or no crime at all and it shouldn’t be 

happening as much as it is. 

I know it is hard for many of you white people to justify protesting when you have seen these 

protests escalate into riots. To you, I ask where is your outrage when you watch someone slowly 

die on camera? When a kid is shot walking down the street? When a woman is shot in her home? 

Or when a man is gunned down while jogging? We are not the ones who have experienced 

racism throughout our entire lives. We are not the ones losing loved ones due to the color of skin. 

We are not being systematically oppressed. When protests turn into riots, it isn’t our place to 

judge. It isn’t our place to discredit what is happening due to some broken glass. It isn’t our place 

to tell the Black community how to grieve. It is our place to stand with and advocate for the 

Black community and let them know we hear them. If you feel strongly that protests are bad and 

are upset about looters, use that passion to go clean up the broken glass instead of sitting behind 

a screen and typing about your distaste. And ask yourselves why you are upset about damaged 

property, and not murder at the hands of those who are supposed to protect and serve 

communities. 

To my white peers and readers, I hope that this letter has given you perspective on what is 

happening. I also hope that some of you are wondering what you could do to help. To be an ally 

for the Black community, there are many things that can be done, but the first step is 

understanding the situation. If you are unclear about what is happening, find a reliable source 

and get facts about what is happening. Ask Black people in and around your community. The 

next step is to take action against racism and do what you can to help the cause. It is not enough 

to not be racist. We must all be actively anti-racist, in order to dismantle the system of white 

supremacy and racism that exist within and at the foundation of every institution in the U.S. Do 

what you can to stop and call out racism that is happening around you. Figure out how it 

masquerades. Donate to causes that help the Black community. One of the best ways you can be 

an ally is to listen to the Black community. Be compassionate. Hear their needs. Educate yourself 

on the history of racism. 

Sincerely, 

Carson 

A person who believes that Black Lives Matter, as should every human being. 

Here’s the link to the Black Lives Matter website. It is an international human rights movement 

that campaigns against violence and systemic racism towards black people. The website has 

news, resources, and an option to donate to the cause. It’s a great resource to get started, but 

educating yourself does not stop here: https://blacklivesmatter.com/