White People Homework (1)

White People: Do the Work

As a follow up to this post, The Racist in the Classroom, I offer these resources that may help you grow and learn. Growth is uncomfortable. Growth can be filled with shame, guilt, and cringe-worthy memories. But maybe that’s just me. And I understand and accept what Jason Reynolds and Ibram X. Kendi said (paraphrasing) –this work is never done. It’s continual growth and learning. And warning: you might lose friends. You might get trolled by white ladies like this one:

This is the fifth conversation in two days where a white white woman has taken on the mantle of trolling. Circular arguments and bad-faith responses, never directly answering the question or topic at hand.

https://www.newyorker.com/news/q-and-a/bryan-stevenson-on-the-frustration-behind-the-george-floyd-protests?fbclid=IwAR2pzRQc39JzrF0Sdxp2OmDdnT82I2nu3HRJD92dCmawcYBBjywgBfugQP0

National Museum of African American History and Culture Releases “Talking About Race” Web Portal

Here’s the next places on my journey:

  • Finish reading White Fragility: at this point I’ve pieced together too many excerpts and need to do a deeper reading
  • Readings and study with critical race theory
  • Work with Monise S. on our indigenous studies
  • Work to find a multitude of resources to support my students and organize them to promote engagement, curiosity and purpose
  • Create curriculum for staff and students: some have already been doing this work, and some are just starting on their journey. I’ll meet them where they are.
  • Dig deep into STAMPED FROM THE BEGINNING by Dr. Kendi
  • Share a post-a-day about a resource or voice that must be heard

First assignment: understand Trump’s use of sacred religious texts and teachings to prop up and disguise his racism and violent, anti-democratic acts. Two places to start:

Do not use this to justify or state “Well, African countries had slaves, too.” Knock it off.
Understand your history of your own nation.
For ten people who want to read these books, and I know you personally, email me and I’ll buy you a copy. I’m not buying these for trolls, white supremacists, or other bad faith actors.

3 comments

  1. I struggled most of yesterday and part of today with a white woman whom I had previously respected. She is a FB only friend, not a friend IRL (and not a teacher, thank goodness). I don’t have very many FB only friends, but she lives locally and seemed to have all my same values. Well, the wheels came off that thought today when she insisted that because looting is bad, she needed to center on that in her post. ‘Murder is bad, looting is bad…’ etc. Well, while I agree with both those statements, she was insisting that they are of similar levels. Looting is nothing like murder. ‘Well, what if it was your stuff?’ Huh? Do you really think I am going to have a hard time choosing between whether or not I want my house looted or to be murdered? That makes sense to you?? Yes, looting is bad. But putting the looting up at the same level as murder is like saying ‘All Live Matter’. Of course they do, but shit, that isn’t what we are talking about right now.

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