In Humility

Wednesday, June 03, 2020

In all humility and with deep sorrow, I am acknowledging that I have been unknowingly complicit with my silence and lack of awareness and understanding.  As I learn more about what it means to be anti-racist, I am taking personal responsibility for educating myself further on black history, the US prison system, political and social oppression, slavery, white privilege, and the active role of an ally.  I am not looking away.  I have had the luxury of being shielded from the hatred and racism my brothers and sisters of color have always endured, but the shield has been lifted.  How could have been so blind?  I don’t know, but I’m moving forward.  

I happen to live in one of the whitest cities in America, d/t Oregon’s history of racism and bigotry. Not even 100 years ago, Oregon had the largest population of KKK members per capita than any other state in the country.  As a native Oregonian, I have felt disgusted by this history, yet I fooled myself into thinking it was in the past.  I know better now.  I am acknowledging this history, the role I may have unknowingly played in perpetuating racist constructs, and am open to learning, changing, and being uncomfortable with the process.  

Watching 13th by Ava DuVernay on Netflix tonight with my family, and currently reading The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness by Michelle Alexander. This is just a start, a launching platform for deep personal growth and learning so I can be a true and present ally in ending racism.


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