Addendum to Modules 1 & 2
We have gotten through two modules,
one on WHY Black Lives Matter and a second on WHAT are the definitions for the terms we are using. Recently I received a comment relevant to the educational material on definitions. Following is the question and my reply. We then are going to finish these first 2 Modules with a feedback form. Please respond when and however you are able.
In a week or two we will move on to identify WHERE the attitudes and behaviors are present that today keep in place the structures and systems that make it important to say “Black Lives Matter!” This will give us the ability to know where to put our our hearts and minds in order to changes things to the point where “all lives matter” is truly sufficient; where “beloved community” includes everybody and are more then just pretty words, that in fact this is the lived reality for everyone. We have a ways to go.
I pray that all our imperfections can be useful for creating a tapestry of Light and Oneness,
From a comment that was written to me from someone from the Stop Neo Racism website “Stop Neo-Racism
“Most of this website’s content is neo-racist and doing more harm than good. Please stop trying to divide everyone into racial categories and instead try and unite us.
neo-rac·ism | \ nē-ō-ˈrā-ˌsi-zəm \
1a. : a belief that race is a real and inescapable social construct that determines an individual’s identity, agency, beliefs, ability, or culture, such that members of different race groups can never understand each other due to intrinsic and insurmountable cultural differences.
1b. : prejudice, discrimination, stereotyping, or antagonism directed against a person or people based on this belief.
2 : discrimination, behavior or attitudes toward individuals or groups that reflect and foster the belief that members of some race groups are permanently subordinate to members of other race groups.”
Thank-you for your comment. Yes, the truth is that the color of one’s skin is no different than the variety of various colors of eyes, hair, etc.(see “Walking in My Shoes“ https://tools4racialjustice.net/walking-in-my-shoes/) Unfortunately our history for the last 500 plus years and still operating today HAS made race a real and inescapable social construct that determines an individual’s identity, agency, beliefs, ability, or culture. Saying that is not true, that there is no such social construct operating in our society, will not bring people closer together in fact it divides us even more.
Some articles that explain the problem with this attitude of people who say that they “don’t see color,” are:
• “Being “Color Blind” Doesn’t Make You Not Racist—In Fact, It Can Mean the Opposite“: https://www.oprahdaily.com/life/relationships-love/a32824297/color-blind-myth-racism/
• “When People Say They Don’t See Race, ‘I Ask Them If They Don’t See Me’“ : https://www.edweek.org/teaching-learning/opinion-when-people-say-they-dont-see-race-i-ask-them-if-they-dont-see-me/2019/09
• “Color Blindness Is Counterproductive“: https://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2015/09/color-blindness-is-counterproductive/405037/
• American Psychological Association’s “The Myth of Racial Color Blindness“: https://www.apa.org/pubs/books/The-Myth-of-Racial-Color-Blindness-Intro-Sample.pdf.
Website Feedback Form
Strongly Agree = 1 < < < > > > Strongly Disagree = 5
1. The material was presented in an organized manner.
2. The content was relevant.
3. My thinking about the topic is more focused.
4. I gained new insights.
5. What was most helpful to you about the website?
6. What troubled you?
7. Things I would like to see included, changed or expanded upon are…
Any additional feedback?
Comment: ” This installment sickens me more than the others.”
Response: I keep reading about more school committees being attacked because parents don’t want white children to be uncomfortable. Then I read this one which made me kinda sick to my stomach.
I sometimes feel a wave of hopelessness for humanity … then I remembered there are people who care and want to understand. I have to remind myself that bringing things into the light is vital, like compost if it is never turned it gets even more nasty:
Black Children In Tennessee Were Jailed For A Crime That Doesn’t Exist
By Meribah Knight, Nashville Public Radio, and Ken Armstrong, ProPublica | 10/08/2021
C hapter 1: “What in the World?”
Friday, April 15, 2016: Hobgood Elementary School, Murfreesboro, Tennessee
Three police officers were crowded into the assistant principal’s office at Hobgood Elementary School, and Tammy Garrett, the school’s principal, had no idea what to do. One officer, wearing a tactical vest, was telling her: Go get the kids. A second officer was telling her: Don’t go get the kids. The third officer wasn’t saying anything.
Garrett knew the police had been sent to arrest some children, although exactly which children, it would turn out, was unclear to everyone, even to these officers. The names police had given the principal included four girls, now sitting in classrooms throughout the school. All four girls were Black. There was a sixth grader, two fourth graders and a third grader. The youngest was 8. On this sunny Friday afternoon in spring, she wore her hair in pigtails.
A few weeks before, a video had appeared on YouTube. It showed two small boys, 5 and 6 years old, throwing feeble punches at a larger boy as he walked away, while other kids tagged along, some yelling. The scuffle took place off school grounds, after a game of pickup basketball. One kid insulted another kid’s mother, is what started it all.
The police were at Hobgood because of that video. But they hadn’t come for the boys who threw punches. They were here for the children who looked on. …
Garrett rounded up the sixth grader, a tall girl with braids who had visions of becoming a police officer; one of the fourth graders, the girl with diabetes; and the 8-year-old third grader. In the hallway, the principal tried to prepare them, saying the police were there regarding a video of a fight. Hearing this, the sixth grader told Garrett that the two other girls hadn’t even been there.
After returning to the office with the three girls, Garrett relayed to police what the sixth grader had told her.
Her words were barely out when Carroll made it clear he’d had enough, Garrett said later when interviewed as part of an internal police investigation.
Carroll pulled out handcuffs and put them “right in my face,” Garrett recalled.
“And he said, ‘We’re going now, we’re going now, there’s no more talk, and we’re going now.’
“And I said, ‘But, but, but.’”
Carroll yelled at her, Garrett said. She felt intimidated. Bullied. She worried that if she said any more, she might be arrested herself. “And so I backed off.”
By now the girls were crying and screaming and reaching for the principal, who was also crying, as was the assistant principal. “And it was, it was, it was awful,” Garrett later said.