Black lives matter.
And yes, I typically write about birds, but I’m finding it really hard to think about birding and happier times spent birding, when I know people are dying because of the color of their skin.
Because people are still racist. Because they haven’t confronted their own privilege and how white supremacy makes their lives easier.
It is our duty, as white people, to listen to, believe, stand with, and support black people how they want us to. Our silence is literally killing people. It’s allowing systems of oppression to continue, and it has to stop. Speak up.
It is our duty to dismantle white supremacy in our society. No one person can do it. We all have to contribute.
It is our duty to stand against all forms of racism, overt and covert. It happens every day, way too much. Wake up and look around. It’s there. What are you going to do to stop it?
It is our duty to challenge the beliefs we were raised with, that were all around us. We have to start examining our lives and beliefs.
Our society was not and definitely is not “past all this” because we had a black president. I wish we were, but the systems that are in place that oppress people of color are still alive and well, unfortunately. We need to work to stop them.
It starts with you. Look inward and find what beliefs you hold that might be contributing to a society that oppresses people of color and begin dismantling that.
Then take it outward. Start challenging your fellow white people. Oh, I’m sorry. You don’t like conflict? Me either, but tell that to all of the people who have been murdered by our system. Go ahead, I’ll wait.
We have to stop allowing this to happen.
Our country was built on stolen land using stolen people. It is not as great as you were raised to believe. I hope you see that.
I hope you can be a part of ending the horribly racist legacy our country is leaving behind.
It’s not going to be easy or fun.
I know we’d all rather be out birding, but it’s not okay for us to bird blindly when our fellow black birders can’t go birding without having their lives threatened by calls to the cops.
There is an amazing movement this week called #BlackBirdersWeek. Follow that hashtag and all the black people sharing their stories. It’s a bit of hope in these dark times.