Reading Time: 9 minutes You must become aware of how patriarchy has shaped each of us, even women, in order to unravel and remove it from your consciousness. You also have to know that options that are more liberating and not based on oppression, exist and you, and everyone, can thrive and flourish with the alternative. Leadership models exist that are based on collaboration and resourcefulness and continuously regenerate infinite power. We just have to learn them and practice them in the various contexts of our lives.
Reading Time: 8 minutes Two people decide to go cycling. They decide to cycle for the same distance but take different routes. One takes a route that is a bit bumpy but pretty much downhill. It is hot, but the path is a little shady. For this person, the path was challenging and was definitely a vigorous workout, but this person feels good for meeting the challenge of the workout. When the two people meet up, the other person says that the ride was awful for her. Her path was also bumpy but the road she took was at an incline the entire time. She was even more sunburnt than the first person because she had no sunscreen. At one point, a strong gust of wind blew her over and she hurt her foot. She ran out of water halfway through. When she hears about the first person’s route, she remarks that her own experience seemed so much more difficult. Yet it was the same distance, and both rode their bikes. This is what privilege looks like.
Reading Time: 6 minutes One thing I often tell folks in my workshop: Please do not apologize for your privilege. Now you know you have it, what do you do? You become uber-aware of it and begin to look for who is disadvantaged by your privilege. If you get a job and you know that the brown skin woman who applied for it was more qualified, get in there and ask why you were hired and not her. Stand up for your values and call folk out on their racism, on how they are biased and using their power to promote their biases. Let them get totally uncomfortable with all that don’t let them off the hook.
What To Do With That Privilege Everyone is Telling You You’ve Got: An Essay on Privilege, Shame and Racism
Reading Time: 13 minutes Given that racism holds our collective shame, each of us have an obligation to work towards healing it as we are all part of the collective. You have the obligation to engage in healing as healing is life-giving. If you are breathing, you have an obligation to life to regenerate life. You do not bring healing, growth, transformation, light to the situation by shaming, raging, name calling and yelling at those that don’t get it right. You will not always get it right and yelling at yourself does not bring growth, or life.
Reading Time: 6 minutes I have to believe the majority of white people do not understand the relationship between privilege and the police. How can they? You can only see the world through your own eyes. If you’re not trying to understand another person’s experience, as in really making an effort, you won’t. And white people don’t like to talk about things like implicit bias and privilege.
However, when those Starbucks employees picked up the phone and 911 to report two black men loitering, they were legitimately putting the lives of those two black men at risk. Additionally, they were putting lives of everyone else in the store at risk.