As you’re reading this blog post I like to think that it’s because you’ve been tuned in to the recent progression of conversations around systemic racism. In which case, you’re aware that on Tuesday 2nd June 2020 something beautiful happened in the wake of yet another tragedy; on this day, #BlackoutTuesday, conversations begun about what we as the human race can do combat this evil. I want to write it down and to mark the date because I feel like maybe it was the start of something great. And I hope that in years to come, that date will still ring significantly when this post is read.
So I dived head-first into Instagram on that Tuesday pleasantly uplifted by my friends’, peers’ and people I admired’s willingness to join the conversation, to learn and to really seek to understand. On Wednesday and Thursday I continued reading, digesting, sharing, listening, talking, debating.
By Friday I felt well and truly overwhelmed. Overwhelmed with the pressure of it all. The pressure to read every piece of information spilling into my Instagram Stories feed, to screengrab reading lists and enlightening documentaries, poignant quotes and helpful infographics. The pressure of feeling like I ‘had the mic’ and should be sharing as much of all of this information as possible with my attentive following for whom I was grateful. The pressure to reply to family members filling my WhatsApp with viral videos, the pressure to be available to talk exhaustively to ally friends who had jumped in my DMs and like most others I spoke to, overall, the pressure to do something proactive and long-term with all of this information.
So I got to thinking about what we all need most to help us to stay on top of this and not let the weight of awakening drag us back down the hill and undo the momentum the last few weeks has brought. I say ‘awakening’ in reference to ‘us’ but the truth is that systemic racism, overt racism, subconscious bias… As a black person these are nothing at all new to me but rather, a very sinister and very conscious part of my everyday reality as I shared in this storytime YouTube video on my personal experiences of racism.
Back to our 7 step anti-racism plan though. The first thing I worried about, in light of the Black Lives Matter campaign resurgence, was missing all of the great resources that have been shared. I’m worried that by the time I’ve finished reading the first book being recommended of late, the conversations over on social media will move and the wealth of information will disappear.
So, to helps us to keep tabs on the information that’s being shared, I’ve created a downloadable list of the key resources on racial injustice which come highly recommended, along with a 7 step anti-racism plan to guide you as you proactively strive for racial equality (you little gem, you).
Naturally, once we’ve begun re-educating ourselves on racism, we’ll want to make sense of this information in order see how we can help to fight it. This plan, therefore, allows space for you to note your current understanding of the issues surrounding racism and what you believe causes it to continue to exist. Your answer may change as you continue to re-educate yourself and that’s fine; the key point is to make sense of your up-to-date thoughts so that they don’t become so overwhelming that you want to give in and let systemic racism prevail.
The thing a lot of us are most eager to know is what specifically we can do to make a real, lasting difference to fight racism. The answer will be different for all of us but I’d like to help by sharing some of the things that I’m personally doing to make a proactive difference. Talking with friends, I understand the wish to know which businesses to support – and which ones you may wish to boycott – so this is also covered in the 7 step anti-racism plan with advice on how to continue vetting companies going forward.
As you become aware of more ways that you’d like proactively push for racial equality, you may find it useful to make a note of them in the, ‘Some ways in which I, personally, can push for racial equality are…‘ section of the plan so that all the information is to hand whenever you need it. As you continue your re-education and research, more answers will come to you over time. You may then wish to create additional pages to the guide to give yourself more space to write your progressive plans.
Researching and fleshing out each section of the guide going forward is a huge part of each of our own social responsibility! Though if there’s any way that I can tweak the framework to better help, I’d be happy to address it and if you come across any great resources or brands that you’d like to share, by all means spread the word in the comments section below!
This is an ongoing conversation which I’ll continue here on Rich Little Poor Girl. This guide is something I made, quickly, to offer us a solution to overwhelm so it’s very much a work in progress – keep checking back for updates. I’ll let you get to grips with the guide and then I encourage you to let me know your thoughts in a comment below. Thank you for caring enough to read this. Remember, nothing changes if nothing changes.
Did you like this post on ‘Your 7 Step Anti-Racism Plan’? Here’s a similar one that you’ll also find comforting right now <3