White people, particularly in the UK, have been too complacent in the face of racism. White people should never have been complacent.
I, as a white person, was complacent but I am not going to say that we should no longer be comlplacent because that implies there was a point where there was no race issues. However, my life has allowed me to be complacent and it pains me that it is the death of yet another black man in America at the hands of the police to finally and fully open my eyes.
Who was George Floyd?
George Floyd was a man in his 40s working as a security guard in a new city when he was killed by police officers, . He was described by loved ones as a gentle giant and a friend to all. One officer placed his knee on Floyd’s neck while three further offices stood by, listened and watched as Floyd pleaded for his life. All four officers have been fired, but that is not enough.
Victims of Police Violence
White people should never have been complacent because there have already been deaths of more than 35 black people at the hands of police in America in 2020. I say more than because the data has over 100 victims of police violence where the race data isn’t available.
White people should never have been complacent because we ask black parents how they teach their boys to stay alive rather than teaching our white children not to kill. White people should never have been complacent because if you think the ‘race’ problem is ‘just’ an american problem you are not Looking close enough at your own country’s history.
Colour blind is privilege
Complacent White people who “don’t see race” or “aren’t racist” or “would never condone violence against anyone” are as culpable in their silence as the perpetrators of hate crimes. And if you’re a white person reading this and thinking, that feels a bit much, then check your prívele h.
I’ll be honest, as I wrote in my post only last week, race is not my comfort zone when it comes to social justice advocacy. But you know what? My discomfort is not worth more than someone’s life and nor is yours. So we are going to raise our kids to be better… and our white kids will learn how not to kill so that black kids don’t have to learn to stay alive.
I am scared I am going to get it wrong, but I also know that my silence is more harmful. So we are reading those books, we are going to discuss police brutality in an age appropiate way and we are going become a refuge for any person of colour who needs it.
Do the Work
If you want more information about this do the work. Find The Hang Your Heart Project, make reparations by donating to black led organisations fighting for social justice, read Me and White Supremacy by Layla Saad. Do the work.
DO NOT slip into a black person’s DMs asking what you should do. DO NOT just offer thoughts and prayers, absolve yourself of guilt and move on. DO NOT raise your kids to kill black people. BE BETTER.
A Found Poem
I wrote a ‘found poem’ using some of the things I saw being said about the situation on Social Media.