Racism is Real. Racism is Wrong. If we can all agree on that, we have a fighting chance.
As the country reels over the unfortunate event of May 25, millions have stepped out as one, to denounce racism, and call it for what it is.
Yes! This is a personal finance blog. And heck heck yes, the paths of finance and racism do intersect. And yes, this is my platform – so I’m using it to reach out as best I know how.
I don’t know if one person gets to see this. Or perhaps 1000 do. I do know that if this reaches “the one” who needs to see it; then this platform has served it’s purpose.
What is Racism?
I think racism as a term on its own is very poorly understood at best. The term is so much more of a complex issue than can be simply dismissed as a feeling of superiority.
A search for the term racism in the Oxford English Dictionary provides this definition: Prejudice, discrimination, or antagonism directed against someone of a different race based on the belief that one’s own race is superior.
I’m no expert, so this will not be a deep dive into the roots of race inequality in our world today. I do think that racism is much more than can be explained away in one very well crafted dictionary definition.
The more cogent question is, if not now, when?
On May 25, 2020, in broad daylight, with enough witnesses to scare off even some of the most daring criminals – Minneapolis police officers arrested George Floyd, a 46-year-old black male. A mere seventeen minutes after the first police squad car arrived on the scene, George lay there, apparently lifeless.
Eight minutes and 46 seconds.
Another human, knelt on the Mr. Floyd’s neck, while he pleaded (when he was conscious at least) for his life. Eight minutes and 46 seconds. We’ve all watched, the video of a man’s life snuffed out of him.
If not now, when will we ever?
What Can We Do?
Admit Racism Is Real
Racism is real. We have to admit it. Half the battle is always identifying the problem, then facing it head on.
Most people are amazing. That’s my picture with my lovely family at the top right of this page, so…let’s just put it out there. I’m a black dude.
Every white person I know personally, however, is amazing. Virtually every cop I’ve personally interacted with has a deep sense of loyalty to justice and living by the oath they’ve taken. One of my closest friends is white, and I mean pasty white. He’s as white as they come – sorry Drew, but you’re white and you know it.
But as a people, we’ve got to do better. We’ve got to be better.
Racism is Real. For decades we’ve listened to respond, rather than listening to understand.
I think this is a turning point in our country’s history, and I pray, a turning point in humanity’s history.
Listen. Listen to the voice of your neighbor. To the cries of your Brown, Black, Asian, Hispanic, whatever color, brothers and sisters. Listen. Try to understand.
Be bothered about Systemic Racism
When it happens around you, say something. Do something. Might seem trivial at the time, but your actions send reverberations through the very workings of our culture and system.
Racism is very real. Perhaps not for everyone, but for some, this is as close to being an existential threat as it can be, and we need to see it as such.
Pray - Specifically about Racism
Racism is Real, and we need to pray about it. Sounds ordinary. But I assure you it’s powerful.
Prayer is the one thing we all turn to when backed against the wall.
That’s right, Christians, Atheists, Buddhists, Muslims, Humans. When we reach the crossroads, we make it brief, sometimes just under our breath, but we pray. You pray when you have to. I think we all have to now.
Pray. I don’t know what to ask you to pray for. But I do know if you’re bothered by racism, you probably know what needs to be said.
Racism is Real. The demonstrations are necessary. Every one speaking up is a start. And the very many social media posts will move the needle.
Love. That’s what will drive this all home. We need to find our way back to loving one another for who we are. And exactly where we are. We need to love.
Whomever finds Love, finds Life.
Black Lives Matter
My Personal Prayer
- I pray for the families of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, Eric Garner, Laquan McDonlad, Janet Wilson, and so so many others.
- That weeks from now, this is just not another news story
- I pray for change, real change, tangible change that we can all see and embrace.
- I pray we can look back one day and say, George, thank you. Thank you Floyd family. Thank you.
My 1 Cent.
Racism is real. A few words on my blog isn’t much at all. It’s really not even worth being called my two cents, and I honestly feel that way. So here’s my one cent.
I hope George Floyd’s legacy is one of being directly linked to starting the change. I hope we can look back in 25 years and really remember. Remember when a 46-year-old black male’s life was snuffed out of him. And yet, be glad.
Glad that his legacy is directly linked to starting the change. A change our country and world, so desperately needs.