Because I’m Black

I’ve been intentionally quiet over the past few weeks and days as I see more and more of my friends and acquaintances making declarations of anti-racism; sharing book, article, and speaker recommendations; declaring how tired they are of “everything that’s been going on“ (which could include the virus, really); and so on.

I see you. I hear you. I am not unaffected.

For those of you who didn’t know or may have wondered (which is something for which I don’t blame you), I am just black; all black, not mixed with anything. My mom’s side of the family has very light skin. Black people come in many colors.

I’ve also been thinking about what I want, what I need specifically. I speak only for myself, Lindsay Wilcox, and not for anyone else.

I want you to get to know the actual black people in your lives, and I want you to get to know them as black people. That includes me, so you’re off to a good start. 👍 I’ve been black my whole life. It is part of who I am. You might not think about that part of me when you think of me. That doesn’t make me not black.

I also want you to listen when people say that some things are not okay. I mean matters of race right now, but it applies across the board. That’s the phrase I use (“not okay”), and that’s what I teach my students, and that’s probably what I would teach my children if I had any. When someone⁠—anyone—says “that’s not okay,” the correct response is “I’m sorry.” Then stop talking. If it’s not a big deal, you’re all set, and we can all move on with our lives. If is a big deal to that person—even if it is not a big deal to you—keep listening. Big deals get explained. You can defend yourself second. The one who was offended gets to speak first.

That’s all I have to say for now. Thanks for reading. Thanks for caring.



2 Comments

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Thank you Lindsay for a well written post. Your advice applies to many other topics in our society as well as the important issue of race relations. Regarding the topic of race relations, I’m sure you’ve heard of St. Martin de Porres. I’ve been praying to him these last few weeks for our country. I advise all believers to ask for his intercession in Heaven.

It’s so nice to connect with a fellow educator. I’m guessing you were teaching remotely like I was this spring. God bless you for the hard work that I know all teachers do, both at school and at home.

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