Trigger Warning: I am a white person, and this post is directly (and indirectly) about some of my experiences with racism.
I have effectively been written off by most people that I, myself know, for sharing my views on Facebook.
And, what that tells me is that the crux of these relationships were not too stable to begin with, which was partially a shock to me.
I never personally called anyone out. For anything.
I once lived in small towns. And, I never told anyone they were being racist (except the few times I was able to speak up… all of them offline).
If any of what I write here today says anything about me, I hope that it’s that I am a person who is growing, but far from being grown.
I have the added burden of hearing these past racist conversations in my head, as I battle schizoaffective disorder.
Over time, I overlooked some instances of overt racism in my friends… and, that wasn’t right. 😦
Telling them it was wrong, was not enough. It can never be enough!
These so-called friends…
If they were only friends with me, because it somehow helped them to be less creepy or shameful… then, that’s on them!
If you feel better, befriending someone who is nice, who has a more difficult life than you (and you’re a puke), well then, I guess you can feel better about your miserable life.
The bottom line…
I messed up in the past, by not doing more than saying, “that isn’t cool what you just said.”
Yes, I spoke aloud about Black Lives Matter on social media today (and other days). Many times in fact.
I did… I had to!
I took several chances and am realizing the consequences of speaking up (I don’t regret it)!
I also live in a conservative midwest state. 😦
So, while I feel a bit numb (more regarding the people I was friends with for 20 years); on the bright side, I will not be sending out any Christmas cards to “my people” anymore.
Because “my people” don’t exist… at least in person!
And, to be frank… I am more concerned about the instances of racism I recall hearing (and, not doing enough about).
There are a few people who I put on notice (mostly family) because I finally saw them and their toxicity for what that is (I’ve written about this before).
In hindsight, I know I should have ended those relationships where racial slurs were uttered.
The person I was until recently, was someone who wanted to get along with people.
I was a person who spoke up, but really didn’t have a lot of backbone to me.
I don’t expect anyone to understand, just forgive… hopefully…
I feel real shitty about what I previously allowed into my life.
How about you? What sorts of experiences have you had with racial slurs? Are you a white person? What did you do about them?