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I have struggled with how to put my feelings into words, as I’m sure many other people have. Do I, as a white person, have the right to give insight on the events of not only the last 5 days, but the last 400 years? The answer to that is no. Full stop. But what I do feel I can say is that for as much as these recent events have hurt me, knowing that there are those in this society who feel it is ok to take another person’s life with such disregard (and automatically assuming the system will cover for them)…for as much as that hurts, it’s only a fraction of what is felt in black communities on a daily basis and a pain I cannot understand. History has a long memory, but we are terrible at learning from it. We must do better, we must be willing to not just listen, but hear the voices that have been marginalized for so long. Racism isn’t a set of solitary acts, it’s foundational in systems that claim to service and protect us all. It’s time to dismantle those foundations and build new ones together, but not before we learn to educate ourselves. Watch media from black creators, read black authors, follow and support black activists. The only way we can move forward is by making sure we don’t leave anyone behind. This has been an extremely difficult time for everyone, but for the black community specifically. I know that I have privilege and there is a fine line between voicing support and virtue signaling, but I know that I have a role to play. I have never been a confrontational person. As long as I can remember, I’ve had a hard time standing up for myself, let alone other people. But I’m hoping that I can start to change, if not now, then when? I will support where I can, speak up where it’s necessary and fall back where others need to be heard. Black lives matter. They fucking matter.

I have struggled with how to put my feelings into words, as I’m sure many other people have. Do I, as a white person, have the right to give insight on the events of not only the last 5 days, but the last 400 years? The answer to that is no. Full stop. But what I do feel I can say is that for as much as these recent events have hurt me, knowing that there are those in this society who feel it is ok to take another person’s life with such disregard (and automatically assuming the system will cover for them)…for as much as that hurts, it’s only a fraction of what is felt in black communities on a daily basis and a pain I cannot understand. History has a long memory, but we are terrible at learning from it. We must do better, we must be willing to not just listen, but hear the voices that have been marginalized for so long. Racism isn’t a set of solitary acts, it’s foundational in systems that claim to service and protect us all. It’s time to dismantle those foundations and build new ones together, but not before we learn to educate ourselves. Watch media from black creators, read black authors, follow and support black activists. The only way we can move forward is by making sure we don’t leave anyone behind. This has been an extremely difficult time for everyone, but for the black community specifically. I know that I have privilege and there is a fine line between voicing support and virtue signaling, but I know that I have a role to play. I have never been a confrontational person. As long as I can remember, I’ve had a hard time standing up for myself, let alone other people. But I’m hoping that I can start to change, if not now, then when? I will support where I can, speak up where it’s necessary and fall back where others need to be heard. Black lives matter. They fucking matter.

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