Guilt or pride for things done before you were born is illogical; being honest about them isn’t. America’s moved beyond a history of intentional racism promoting, to racism denying. That’s progress. Now we need racism healing.
Talking about race isn’t divisive. Ignoring or denying it’s negative impact is. It’s good to have compassion for people who are hurting from what they see as racism but we won’t know how other people think and feel, if we refuse to compassionately listen to them.
It takes courage and effort to go beyond the box of bias-based thinking. To get beyond bias, examine the history of your nation as if you are reading the history of a nation you’ve never heard of before.
If we spent as much time trying to understand racism as we do trying to deny it, we’d be able to move beyond so much focus on it. It’s difficult to be truthful if you’re not willing to be uncomfortable.
A colorless examination of how slaves were treated would be appalling to almost anyone. Regardless of the color of the slaves or slaveholders, slavery was cruel and unjust.
We can’t not see skin color, but we can reject the value hierarchy that history puts on skin shade. I like people whose skin color doesn’t match mine just as much as people whose does. When I meet a person, regardless of skin color, I see a fellow and equal human being.
If learning something doesn’t align your thoughts and feelings with truth, then you’ve memorized it, but not truly learned it. It’s important that we align with truth and not twist truth to try to make it align with us.
Learning about the cruel parts of American history has altered my thoughts and feelings. Here’s how.