We just don’t get it. I’m saying that as a white person…we don’t get it! We don’t get how widespread discrimination is in our society. We don’t get the fear and frustration that people of color are feeling. We don’t get how scary it can be to be pulled over by a cop hoping you’ll be treated fairly. We don’t get the anxiety of a parent wondering how to tell their child they will be mistreated just because of the color of their skin. We don’t get the unspoken prejudice inherent in our assumptions. We just don’t get it!
We must face the reality of racism.
It should break our hearts.
The other day I posted this statement on Facebook: “We need to be outraged by what happened to George Floyd. Please use this tragedy to talk about racism and what we can do about it.” I’ve never had so many comments and conflicts from a post before. It was disappointing to see how quickly the conversation turned away from the tragic death of George Floyd to “whether or not it was really an act of racism.” We just don’t get it! We miss the point! One person explained it this way: “We rarely can see the systemic issues that plague us. This being the case, there will be a lot of folks who don’t see this as a racist event/issue…No one wants to face those issues, so we call it something else. This guy (police officer) looked into the camera and kept on doing what he did knowing full well the race issues he was provoking in the situation” (Jim Trosen).
I have never been mistreated because of the color of my skin. I wish I could say that for everyone else. People are discriminated against every day only because of color! And that is SO WRONG!
Sadly, many peaceful protests have degenerated into riots and criminal activity by anarchists. This is absolutely wrong, too, and distracts us from the main problem. Once again, we are divided and not listening to one other. Once again, we just don’t get it!
Discrimination is overcome
one relationship at a time.
Here’s my challenge: Ask any person of color to share their personal experiences regarding discrimination. They will not have one story to share with you, but many. Yes, it may be uncomfortable, but we need to hear it and feel the hurt. It may be that the very thing that causes us discomfort will reveal an unknown truth of our own bias.
BEFORE YOU GO
Racism is real and it should break our hearts. One time a lawyer came to Jesus and asked, “Who is my neighbor?” Jesus answered him by telling the parable of the Good Samaritan. We are taught that a neighbor is anyone on the side of the road who is in need! Take the initiative to reach out to those around you. Love your neighbor! If you see prejudice, speak up, whether at work or in the community. Discrimination is overcome one relationship at a time.