Home thoughts learning, listening

learning, listening

by Shawni

I don’t have any authority to say anything at all about what is going on in the world.

Yet I cannot be silent.

I am working to hear and to listen, to understand. It feels like we are all in a churning washing machine of mourning and grieving and sifting and praying. And realizing how much more we have to learn from one another.

Here is what I do know: I am privileged. I have advantages I have always been grateful for, but am only now really waking up to. I know that I can never truly understand the depths of social injustice because of that privilege, but I know that I need to do better. I want to stay in this space of striving to be more connected and there is so much I need to learn. I don’t want to let this moment in human history be a large and sorrowful, yet fleeting blip in the screen for equality.

I also know that there is light and beauty to be found through action and hope. I have seen it at work in the world already. Perhaps only in seed form so far, but it is growing and has power to take over the world if we let it. I got teary-eyed this morning thinking of the depth of conversations all the events in the world right now have spurred even in my own little family, the similar conversations and “awakenings” rippling across the country. The peaceful protests creating so much more awareness, the voices of kindness from the black community reaching out. Forgiving. Helping the understanding. The pictures of police officers kneeling in humility, the hugs through tears all mingled in with the horrific heartbreak.

I also got teary this morning thinking of humanity being in this together. Each with his/her unique emotions, but unlike the corona virus, every single one of us can DO something about racial inequality. The remedy is not to sit huddled in our homes and wait it out, the remedy is to reach out like never before and seek to understand, to reach outside of our bubbles and love more than ever before. And I am committed to learn and read and ask and act.

I have a lot of work to do. We all do. But may we realize our unique lights (and we have them, directly from a God who loves us all equally), connected together in a new way can create a pretty magnificent sunrise.

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73 comments

Andreea June 3, 2020 - 9:16 am

Respectfully, I’d like to suggest that the time for action is literally right now. The work is for us to do. Black people are tired. They’re waiting on us. You, and your entire family, have an incredible platform. Start today, with these five steps:
–take the free Harvard Implicit Bias Test, starting with the one on race
–read and go through the 30-day step-by-step workbook in “me and white supremacy”, by Layla F. Saad
–gather your family and watch Ava DuVernay’s “13th” on Netflix, a documentary grounded in the 13th Amendment of the Constitution which explores the history of racial inequality in the U.S.
–subscribe and listen to the “Seeing White” podcast
–support black-owned businesses with your dollars

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Susannah June 3, 2020 - 12:42 pm

These are great suggestions and places to start!

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Shawni June 3, 2020 - 12:44 pm

Thank you so much for the suggestions, I really appreciate your input.

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Nish June 3, 2020 - 3:40 pm

Hi Shawni, I never comment but love reading your reflections on family and life. Thank you for posting this. As white people, we all have uncomfortable work to do to start dismantling systemic racism. We will say the wrong thing, it won’t necessarily be easy but by golly it’ll be a lot easier than being a black person in fear for their lives on a daily basis just because of the color of their skin. Thank you Andreea for your action suggestions, I think they are spot on and I’d add one more – donate. It’s time to put our money where our mouth is and support black-run organisations who are fighting for their rights.

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Tita Yanez June 10, 2020 - 2:32 am

Hi Shawni My name is Tita Yanez and I’ve been following you for many years so long ago I even remembered when u posted that Max noticed Lucy having trouble seeing and it broke me so much that I pray for your baby on the daily. I live your family from a far but really never think to comment. When something’s are said and I’ve noticed that everyone loves you and bands by you and I secretly love that I don’t have a family of siblings that are close( but that’s for another time). I’m commenting today because I’ve lived in California my whole life actually the same town I was born and raised my family goes back over 5 generations back here in Cali. So when I went to high school in the 80s I got called Wetback (it’s a illegal crossing the boarder from the river) and I was upset but I got over it quickly and moved on. I lived my life married my husband a few years out of high school ( been married 32 years 6/3). Both my husband and I graduated college did everything correctly yes up and downs like everyone we work hard everyday my husband is a mechanical engineer I’m a professional cake decorator own a few homes busted our whole life’s raised 3 great kids. A few years ago my son wanted to attend college in Oregon and we said yes we got him settled in his new apartment we leave him all excited to do big things. He wasn’t there a week he calls me upset mom. My landlord called me in the office and asked me for my papers. He said I’m a illegal alien and said if I didn’t have it by 5:00 I’ll need to look for somewhere else to live. So I said just show him your birth certificate. Randy John isn’t American enough I’m guessing. That was that. A few weeks later his new car has wetback painted on the door in big letters. His job fired him because he brought too much attention to Nordstrom ( he was transferred). He got customers yelling at him calling him Mexican illegal wait tell we build a wall. This was on the daily. He got so upset that he almost quit school and joined the Marines. So finally after he got beat up by two big guys he had enough and had to come home back to Cali to finish school. My son Randy is a Jr Pastor helps the youth at The Dream Center in Los Angeles Ca. Plus still pursuing his graduate studies at UC Channel Islands. My point is in 30 years from kids calling me Wetback tell my son Randy getting bullied and called mean names our country we love and are proud to call home still treat us as not wanted and we’re Hispanic I can just pray and cry out to Our Lord for ppl to be kind to Darker skin ppl. It’s been far too long and unless you have been humiliated in front of your peers you will never understand how we really feel. So thank you for talking about it and wanting to do better because we ALL can do better be kinder patient and just because someone don’t look like me or walk like me dress like me talk like me and yes darker then me shouldn’t matter one bit especially if they haven’t done anything to me. It’s just crazy to know we love America and not all Americans love us. ( sorry so long and all over the place just in tears for our brothers and sisters). Thank you for hearing me out. And Blessings to you.

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Shawni June 15, 2020 - 10:36 am

Thank you so much for sharing this. It helps so much to hear these stories. I have been learning so much over the last little while and stories like these are powerful to understand how much change is needed. Sending lots of love to your family.
xoxo

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Paola June 3, 2020 - 9:26 am

I have followed you for your years now and absolutely am grateful you are using your platform to speak out on something that albeit very uncomfortable is true and no longer can be denied or ignored. Thank you thank you thank you.

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Aly June 3, 2020 - 10:14 am

❤️❤️ thank you!

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Jen June 3, 2020 - 9:34 am

Beautifully said, Shawni. ❤️

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Anonymous June 3, 2020 - 11:56 am

Peaceful protests?? Perhaps you missed these headlines: (and there are hundreds more…)

Las Vegas: Rioter Shoots Police Officer in the Head from Behind

Report: Retired St. Louis Police Captain Killed Trying to Stop Looters

Looters Grab $2.4 Million Worth of Watches from Soho Rolex Store

Looters Ransack Macy’s, Manhattan Businesses Despite Curfew – Rioters cheer destruction

Report: Retired St. Louis Police Captain Killed Driver Plows into Police Officers in Buffalo During George Floyd Protest Trying to Stop Looters

PURE EVIL: Police Chief Breaks Down After Describing How Richmond Leftist Rioters Torched Home with Children inside, then blocked fire department

Looters swarm Target, Walmart, other stores in Bloomington; ‘It’s senseless, it’s sad’

Apple Stores smashed and looted amid George Floyd protests

“Complete Anarchy”: New York Cops Beaten, Run Over by Cars in Night of Rioting and Arson

Man Pulled From Wheelchair And Beaten During Portland Riots

This Was St. Louis Last Night — NOT Afghanistan — THIS IS NOT A PROTEST – IT IS A WAR ZONE! — 4 Police Shot, Gas Poured on Officers 06/02/2020

Looters Murder Retired St. Louis Police Captain David Dorn at City Pawnshop – Then Loot the store

GOD HELP US: Las Vegas P.D. Officer in Critical Condition After Being Shot In The Head By Rioter

Nike on 5th Avenue Gets Cleared Out by Looters

MN: Angry Mob Of Protesters Drag White Tanker Truck Driver Out Of Vehicle, Ruthlessly Beat Him

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Shawni June 3, 2020 - 12:57 pm

Yes there are so many sad, sad things going on in the world. They are real and looming just as tangibly as the anger behind them. I just wanted to focus this post on hope, trying to magnify the good things at work that aren’t getting as much coverage as all the rage fueling the devastating things on the front pages. I don’t mean to ignore the bad…that anger is a big piece of what is happening right now, but I think the good things are the things that will help us to heal.

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Allison June 3, 2020 - 5:14 pm

So ignoring all the horrible violent acts right now is ok and will work? I’m sorry but my nephew is a good police officer. He saved many lives risking his own during an active shooting several years ago. Now he is working mandatory 7 day a week/12 hour shifts. He has to go out and have rocks thrown at him and people yell F cops and “kill a cop, save a life”. That is completely unacceptable and sad. Of course there are bad cops. They are bad people in every profession. Just like we shouldn’t judge others by the color of their skin, we shouldn’t just all police by the actions of a few!

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Molly June 3, 2020 - 7:59 pm

Allison, I would encourage you to read this article which cites hundreds of studies of racial bias in police forces. No one is saying all cops are bad cops, but they are all participating in an intentionally racist structure and organization.

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Allison June 3, 2020 - 8:28 pm

Wow. All I can even say is wow!

Allison June 3, 2020 - 8:29 pm

Oh that and I don’t even consider the Washington Post it really any news organization real news these days. So your articles mean nothing to me.

Kristen June 3, 2020 - 9:31 pm

Allison, violence against anyone is wrong. One difference between your nephew and a person of color is that your nephew chose to become a police officer and accepted the risk that goes along with that profession.
A person of color had no choice in being born not white or in the inherent risk of being a person of color in a country with systemic racism. I am by no means saying it is okay for anyone to hurt your nephew or any police officer but we must address the catalyst for all this violence and the catalyst is systemic racism.

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Allison June 4, 2020 - 6:52 am

That’s interesting that you assumed my nephew is not of color Kristen. He is actually Hispanic and does have dark skin. There are many police officers of color and all nationalities. And just like all human beings that doesn’t make any officer bette than another. It certainly doesn’t make any officer more deserving of violence or backlash than another. Based on your comment I would say racism must exist on all sides.

Allison June 4, 2020 - 6:58 am

And I also believe violence is never the answer to anything and will never solve any problem regardless of what the problem is. Anger and violence begat anger and violence. George Floyd’s one family asked for it to stop and said it is not what he would want. Right now neighborhoods, communities and peoples lives are being destroyed. This will not solve our nation/world problems….it will only escalate them.

Kristen June 4, 2020 - 8:44 am

Allison, I didn’t assume anything. I was simply stating that a police officer of any color chooses to be a police officer while a person of color doesn’t choose to be a person of color. I also stated that all forms of violence is wrong. If we want violence to end then we need to look at and understand what is causing the violence and in this case it is systemic racism.

Paola June 3, 2020 - 7:26 pm

Thank you for deliberately choosing to acknowledge that people are in pain and anguish. Also many thanks for choosing to spotlight (without condoning or supporting violence, looting or aggression because NONE of those are acceptable) that a people have been trying for years, decades and in peaceful ways to plead ENOUGH. Not all cops are bad. Just like not all protests have been violent, not all protestors are looters, and most certainly the media has done an amazing job of choosing to magnify the bad.

As someone who protested PEACEFULLY & IN AN ORDERLY fashion, it was thrilling to see young and old and people of all nationalities pleading for goodness in the world! I even saw cops and protestors embrace and admit WE MUST ALL do better.

I applaud you yet again for using your platform to promote goodness. Keep it up!!!

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Paola June 3, 2020 - 7:27 pm

I forgot to say @shawni in my comment above

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Molly June 3, 2020 - 8:01 pm

Anonymous: you can easily find similar headlines about the horrid things police have done to peaceful (and nonpeaceful) protestors. Also – no social change has happened without riots that include some violence. Not the Civil Rights act, not women getting the right to vote, not Same-sex marriage.

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Kristine June 3, 2020 - 1:17 pm

“I have nothing to say.. but I can not be silent. “ Sadly every blog, Instagram and YouTube is parroting the same stuff either by jumping on bandwagon immediately or being pressured by comments to say something. Just don’t bother calling the police anymore..

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Tiffany June 3, 2020 - 2:22 pm

Why can’t they call the police?

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Kristine June 3, 2020 - 2:46 pm

Who is they? If you are against the police don’t bother calling them. They were fired. Before normal process. Before the rioting and looting. What is this 1930’s Germany everyone must go on record saying xyz or be shunned and harassed? Scary times. The gentleman who died was given the opportunity and authority to bounce people from a bar. I can’t imagine everyone is thrilled with how he did his job either. The officer’s family is multicultural and multinational. Does not seem racially motivated. He met the description or identity of the person that was called in. In a time where major cities have mostly AA mayors and AA police chiefs and DA’s and predominately a police force of color where exactly is the lack of opportunity?

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Clara June 3, 2020 - 3:38 pm

Derek Chauvin knelt on George Floyd’s neck for over 8 minutes as Floyd repeated, over and over, that he could not breath. He continued to kneel on his neck for more than two minutes after Floyd passed out. Chauvin doesn’t need to have had the explicit intent to kill Floyd because he was black for this to be a racist act. Having black family doesn’t mean he’s not racist. You don’t have to be a member of the KKK or throw the n-word around to be a racist. Being racist is not recognizing the lived experiences of people of color in the US and not believing them when they try to say that how they are treated is different than how white people are treated. This would not have happened to a white man. A white man would have been believed when he said he couldn’t breath. He wouldn’t have been treated as sub-human. And Chauvin knew Floyd. They worked at the same bar. But working as a bouncer at a bar is a far cry from being a police officer. You can’t arrest people at a bar. If a bouncer hurts someone, you can still call the cops – there’s recourse. But that recourse is substantially diminished when it’s a cop causing harm. The power imbalance between the police and citizens is such that they have to be held to a high standard, and certainly one higher than that of a bouncer. If a random person knelt on someone’s neck until they died, they would have been arrested at the scene. It took three days for charges to be filed against Chauvin.

And comparing people feeling the need to speak out to Nazi Germany is an insane comparison. I hope you recognize how outsized a reaction that is. Over 11 million people, mainly Jews, died in the Holocaust. It’s just not an appropriate or okay comparison – you trivialize it by throwing it around so casually.

This is worth reading, though it should only be the beginning of your self-education on what is going on in this country: https://www.tolerance.org/professional-development/white-antiracism-living-the-legacy

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Kristine June 3, 2020 - 6:14 pm

The nazi Germany remark was in regards to the ‘self education’ indoctrination proclamation floating around. The officer was fired right away. You can imagine he would have responded different if the suspect was white. You can’t possibly know. I don’t know what America you have been living in but born and raised and lived in a major US city I have have had bosses AA, mayors AA, police chiefs AA, my dad’s partners have been AA. The last president, senators, generals, soldiers, reporters, financial experts, entertainers, athletes, teachers, authors, nurses, astronaut (one from local high school), doctors. If you can not find law abiding, tax paying, professional AA’s you must be blind. They were fired. They are going to overcharge at some point as that is going to get them off. One officers was Asian. There is no all white force. This is not the democrat controlled southern 1950’s. Obviously everyone can go back to work and church.

Kate June 4, 2020 - 6:05 am

It did happen.
Tony Timpa.
Dallas, 2016.

Shawn June 11, 2020 - 4:53 pm

A lot of people weren’t calling the police anyway; so I would update your insult. Just a suggestion.

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Emma June 12, 2020 - 2:55 am

Kristine, as a German I am beyond disgusted by your comments in general and comparisons to Nazis in particular. I strongly suggest that you educate yourself and read a history book or two. However, I can tell you one thing: the Nazis would have been thrilled to have you.

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Rachel June 3, 2020 - 2:21 pm

I loved this post Shawni! Have you read ‘why I’m no longer talking to white people about race”? It’s by a UK author, but I think it resonates on both sides of the pond. It really helped open my eyes to things I was missing.

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Longtime reader June 5, 2020 - 1:08 pm

Shawni, this makes me sad. How patronizing. Black people are not a monolith. You are not an annointed White Savior by doing a 30-day workbook.

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Rachel June 10, 2020 - 12:57 pm

Wait, what? Longtime reader, was your comment directed at mine? If so, I’m confused because the book I recommended isn’t a workbook? Obviously reading a book can’t possible be the whole answer, but I think educating oneself about the issues is a great place to start.

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Jenn June 3, 2020 - 2:22 pm

I am not racist. I am white. I refuse to apologize or feel guilty because I am white. Likewise, I do not think that a person who is black, or any other color of skin, should apologize or feel guilty because of their color. If I wore a shirt that says, ‘white lives matter’ I would likely be completely shamed, yet it is completely acceptable and I would submit, even trendy, to wear the ‘black lives matter’ t-shirts/bumper stickers, etc. The truth is, we are all HUMAN and ALL lives matter. Why should I be made to feel guilty because of my skin? Why should I have to tell my kids, ‘because we have white skin, we are privileged and therefore, we should spend our lives apologizing to all around us’??? Each person has choices. Not every person has the same choices, that is true, but each person has choices and those choices bring with them consequences be they good or bad. I truly believe that each person has the opportunity to improve their life through their choices. If that is not true, then did God banish some to have no agency while giving other agency? No! He gave to each of us the POWER to choose.

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Andreea June 3, 2020 - 2:42 pm

Jenn, we don’t know each other, but I’m literally on my knees begging you to please, please adopt a growth and learning mindset, and do one thing that may open your mind about how much choice our systems allow Black people to have vs. the choices you and I have. I beg you to take one hour and 40 minutes to watch the “13th” documentary on Netflix, and then email me at seattleandreea@gmail and let’s talk. Thank you for considering.

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Kristine June 3, 2020 - 2:49 pm

You mean think like you or be an idiot? Growth mindset? Really?

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Jenn June 3, 2020 - 4:30 pm

I have been thinking this afternoon about what exactly is my ‘privilege’, if any. Any privilege I have, I believe is due to the choices of my parents…My dad never made a lot of money, we never lived in a big, fancy house, we never went on incredible vacations. No, that was not my privilege. There is NOTHING wrong with those privileges. What I had was parents who were married, and valued family. They taught me to love God and to trust in him. They taught me to read and to do my best in school. They taught me to make choices by thinking through the consequences. All these things, things which have added greatly to my life, and are indeed any privilege I have, are free and equal to anyone who wants them, regardless of race. Any person can choose to be married to add to stability in their life. Any person can choose to love God, to serve Him, to trust Him. Any person can do their best in school. Any person can decide to make choices in their life that will lead to greater happiness.

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Andreea June 3, 2020 - 4:42 pm

Your white skin is your privilege. Be well.

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Riley June 3, 2020 - 5:51 pm

“All these things, things which have added greatly to my life, and are indeed any privilege I have, are free and equal to anyone who wants them, regardless of race.”

Many things are NOT equal for certain groups of people. Have an open dialogue with someone not of your race and maybe take Adreea’s advice and watch 13th on Netflix.

Have you seen the videos of White people calling the cops on black people who are just minding their business? What about when the cops were called on an older black woman who was trying to cash a check? Did you see the video of the mom and son being accused of stealing a tv they paid for? How does that make you feel? Your white skin allows you to go anywhere without fear of the cops being called on you. It allows you to move in ways black people could never think of moving. Saying Black Lives Matter doesnt exclude your life. However, many of those shouting all lives matter dont want to include black lives. Therein lies the issue.

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Jenn June 3, 2020 - 6:25 pm

Riley, I am not aware of any race that cannot choose the ‘privileges’ I mentioned… Marriage, God, doing your best.

Alice June 3, 2020 - 6:22 pm

The idea that “white skin is not a privilege” in America is completely ignorant of history, if not reality. Seriously. Go read Ta-Nehisi Coates’s The Case for Reparations. It’s not that long. https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2014/06/the-case-for-reparations/361631/
Go read Slavery By Another Name by Douglas Blackmon (who is white). https://www.pulitzer.org/winners/douglas-blackmon I believe it’s also a PBS doc.
The oppression of black people is real, systematic, and recent. The least a white person can do, the very least, is humbly consider that as a white person, you do not understand the lived experiences of black people in America. The least you can do is humbly accept that black people know what they’re talking about when they speak of racism.
Of course not all cops are bad. But too many are.
Of course all lives matter. The point is, for too long black lives haven’t.

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Audrey June 4, 2020 - 12:23 pm

While I recognized white privileged, it didn’t sink in what that really meant until I sat in the living room of some dear friends and listened as the wife talked about her awful Hispanic roommate from college and said that if her parents ever thought she was spending time with Hispanics they would have done something about it. Who was her daughter playing with in the back yard? My daughter – her best friend – who is half-Hispanic. As I listened to that story, I realized that my child gets a pass because she has a white mother. If both of her parents were Hispanic, would she have the same friends at school? Would she be invited into the same social circles? We know the answer to this question. My Hispanic daughter isn’t considere Hispanic because people see me and apply my inherent privilege to her. They make these comments in front of me because they don’t see her as Hispanic. They don’t see the actual color of her skin (which is brown) because they see her through my white filter. Unfortunately, over the years I have had other similar experiences. Will this daughter be treated differently someday when her mother isn’t around to “whiten” up her image? To take the sting out of her Spanish name? I don’t know. But I worry about it all the time. It never occurred to me that I would have to worry about something like that. That is the privilege. People of Color don’t have the privilege of NOT getting that. Of course there are privileges that are earned. That isn’t the privilege people are talking about here.

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Shawni June 5, 2020 - 9:21 am

Thank you for sharing that, Audrey. Such a good example of why it’s so important to learn and open our eyes to all of this.

Shawn June 11, 2020 - 4:44 pm

Your logic makes absolutely no sense, race issues aside. No one chooses who their parents are. You admit your privilege is from your parents. So what do you say to kids born to parents who aren’t married, who aren’t encouraging then in school, who aren’t providing stable housing? That they’re just out of luck and you don’t owe anyone anything?

Your attitude is absolutely sickening. I hope some day you are able to come across someone who has the patience and grace to help you learn.

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Nancy June 3, 2020 - 4:39 pm

Wow!

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Rachel June 3, 2020 - 2:44 pm

Of course everyone’s life matters. But I think the point is that black lives are particularly at risk due to institutional racism in eg the police force etc etc. So we are focussing on black lives right now because they are at particular risk.

To use an analogy, advocates for women’s suffrage said “votes for women” because women weren’t able to vote at that time. They didn’t say “votes for men” or “votes for men and women” because (most) men already had the vote.

Do you see what I’m getting at here? I think it is only by trying to tackling systemic inequality and racism that we will get to a place of true equality.

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Kristine June 3, 2020 - 3:32 pm

36% of abortions given to AA women. Genocidal? Certainly not 36% of woman at a fertile age. Or does this mean white women aren’t being given access? Suppose it depends on your political party. I got an alert on my phone warning me if I am not home to go home immediately. This is not acceptable. When you block a highway you don’t persuade people, you make them mad at you and your cause. Same thing when you lite fires. It’s terrorism.

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R June 3, 2020 - 5:58 pm

What does abortion have to do with the issue at hand? This is a serious question from me. I have an idea of what you’re implying, but I want to hear from you first.

Many protestors have said there are agitators mixed into the group. There is video of many of them trying to get people to stop being reckless. There is also video of people cleaning up after the protests, but the media hasn’t shown that.

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Kristine June 3, 2020 - 6:22 pm

AA babies are being killed at a greater rate than white babies. When the egg and sperm are joined human life begins. Not just when the mom declares it a baby at birth, versus an unbaby. Observation after birth is hardly science. Some say rates of incarceration are disproportionate. If you can say that you can say the same about abortion. I saw many clean up videos. Should not have been anything to clean up.

R June 3, 2020 - 7:08 pm

@Kristen I encourage you to watch the 13th documentary on Netflix when it comes to incarceration. I’m choosing not to further address the abortion topic because I have many things I could write but it would turn into a book.

I agree that there shouldn’t have been anything to clean in the first place. I know everyone is angry, but we have to be level headed.

In the end, all I want is for everyone to be happy and love one another. I wish for a better future for everyone. 🤗 ❤❤

Molly June 3, 2020 - 7:53 pm

Jenn, I think the analogy that best helped me understand was this: if there’s a house on fire, you don’t say “all houses need to be put out” you say “rush to put out the fire on that house”. It doesn’t mean that your house doesn’t matter, it’s just that the other house is in dire need. Anti-Black racism was literally written into the foundation of the United States with the 3/5 clause in the constitution. It’s baked into many religions. I think it’s about time we are finally actually coming to terms with that as a nation. No one is asking you to apologize for being white, just asking you to think outside of yourself. I would highly encourage you to read Peggy McIntosh’s article, Unpacking the Invisible Knapsack. You might have more “privilege” than you realize.

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Kat June 4, 2020 - 1:21 pm

It would be nice if we all agreed on the truth that: “we are all HUMAN and ALL lives matter,” unfortunately that is not the state of this country right now (e.g., see Sheena’s and Audrey’s comments below) and until we all live in such a world, it may be important to remind ourselves of the below:

twitter@manny_arteaga
Jesus in Luke 15

100 Sheep, but one goes missing.

Jesus leaves the 99, and goes after the one.

The 99: “But…what about us? Don’t we matter?”

Of course the 99 still matter, but they are not the ones in danger.

The one is.

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Kristine June 3, 2020 - 3:20 pm

Three months ago this family was part of the “problem” “killing us all” cause they together flew internationally at a time it was permissible to do so. Props to them for taking their kids with unlike some influencers leaving their kids behind. Suddenly a cure must have been found for this corona virus. No social distancing or small gatherings in the streets. How dare the President allow for more than 10 in a church who would like to be in a church at once, but it’s perfectly fine to torch one since it was just localized to a small room…. Twilight Zone times.

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Riley June 3, 2020 - 6:43 pm

@JENN for some reason I’m unable to reply to your post about choosing God, marriage, and doing your best. There are people who encompass all 3 and are still judged by the color of their skin. They’re still denied the basic right to just live in peace. What do you say to those people? Try a little harder to fit in? Trust God more? We have to fix the system to allow everyone the same freedoms.

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Shelly Lutes June 3, 2020 - 7:24 pm

Hi Shawnie,
I just finished my first year teaching in Alaska. In September I had the opportunity to attend a workshop called, “Undoing Racism” It was a 3 day experience with some Amazing people who do these workshops around the country. It was very eye opening and heartbreaking at times. I am working hard now to make sure that every student in my classs know that they matter and that they can accomplish their goals. If you get a chance to attend one of these workships, I think you would learn a lot and connect with people have similar goals to find ways to bring all people together in unity, peace, and love. Thank you for your post I love learning from you!!
Shelly

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Shawni June 5, 2020 - 9:24 am

Thank you Shelly, I’ll look into that. xoxo

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Maria June 3, 2020 - 7:31 pm

Kristine is KMS. Incognito.

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Lina June 4, 2020 - 8:50 am

I wish I was a class act like Shawni and many others. But I am just furious about some of the comments on here.
I personally feel like this says it all: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WfVrNtP6q68

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Shawni June 6, 2020 - 7:05 pm

Thank you Lina, I had watched that and yes, it is so helpful to give insight into something that so many white people simply don’t understand. It is just so important for us to try to “hear” each other. Whether we like it or not, we just don’t know where others who aren’t in our same situation are coming from and things like this are so important to share so we can try to “see” each other better. Thank you for sharing.

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Sheena June 4, 2020 - 9:49 am

After reading some of the comments, I want to clarify some things & I hope this helps a little. It’s long, so if you don’t want to read, then just ignore me.

Saying Black Lives Matter does not mean you hate police & it doesn’t mean White, Hispanic, Asian, etc. lives do not matter either. It’s saying that Black Americans don’t want to constantly overthink when encountering police and even society. For reference, I’m Black. I keep my registration and license in my cup holder so I don’t have to reach for anything if I’m pulled over. My husband’s plan is to allow the officer to take his wallet out of his pocket so he doesn’t have to reach for it. We keep our cars immaculate because we don’t want anything to look alarming or threatening. We get anxiety leaving a store empty-handed because we’re worried about being accused of stealing. We don’t allow our son to put his hands in his pockets in stores. We don’t even pick up spare change off the ground. The goal posts for Black Americans to just live are constantly moving and it becomes exhausting to keep up.

That’s the point of the protests. There are a ton of videos of people threatening to call the police on Black people for simply existing. They know our relationship with the police and use it as a weapon. Therefore, All Lives cannot matter if the police are used as a threat to Black lives. Police officers, regardless of race, need to learn about the different communities they are sworn to protect. Good cops have to start holding bad cops accountable. Any racial bias needs to be met head on. No one is asking anyone to apologize for their skin color. We just want the system to be overhauled.

If you choose to ignore/hate the cause because you don’t like the actions of a few, then you weren’t for it to begin with. For the record, I don’t condone the violence and looting. Protesters have said there are agitators and instigators in the crowd. They saw an opportunity and ran with it. You have to hold the media accountable for choosing to highlight them versus those who are being peaceful. I see the media trying to cause a divide and this comment section proves that it’s working.

It’s sad that Shawni’s want to learn and listen is met with so much hostility. I’ve clicked on every single item she has ever linked because I want to know more. I have even read the articles linked in the comments. I am always willing to learn and grow. Why can’t everyone? My grandmother used to always say: “You’ll never get out of that box if you don’t start thinking outside of it.” I didn’t understand what she meant, but I do know.

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Brittany June 4, 2020 - 10:07 am

Well, that just sounds exhausting to experience day after day and year after year. Thank you for taking the time to share your experiences. It’s very eye-opening to me. ❤️

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Lisa Larsen June 4, 2020 - 12:10 pm

Thank you so much for taking the time to explain and share your experiences.

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Allison June 4, 2020 - 1:07 pm

Sheena,
Thank you! I actually completely agree with everything you said. I didn’t mean to sound like I was coming out in hostility to Shawni’s comments. I agree we can all learn and grow. I agree all people should be treated equally and I agree 100 percent the media should be held responsible for what they are doing and promoting during the protests. And your comments were very clear and not combative or seeking to patronize or put anyone down. I apologize if I came across like I was.

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Shawni June 5, 2020 - 9:28 am

Oh Sheena I LOVE the quote from your Grandma, I want to adopt it. Any time we have a chance to try to delve deeper to understand where others are coming from it is a beautiful thing. We all need each other. Thank you so much for sharing your thoughts. xoxo

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April June 9, 2020 - 8:14 am

Thank you for sharing this. I’m so sorry for what you are going through. You are so patient to sit and explain this to us in a calm way.

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Janie June 4, 2020 - 6:06 pm

Please listen to Trevor Noah’s thoughts on what’s been happening. His insights are incredibly valuable and important.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v4amCfVbA_c

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Shawni June 6, 2020 - 6:59 pm

Yes this was really interesting and valuable. I keep thinking about his book “Born a Crime” and how much insight it gave into so many of the issues we are grappling with right now.

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ALLLIVESMATTERISIGNORANTANDRACIST June 5, 2020 - 6:49 am

I wish I could be surprised at the comments here. But I’m not.

Not anything really to do with Shawni herself, but the fact that her blog draws in conservative people and that sect of people is *generally* the most racist — as history has shown and continues to show.

Disappointing. But not surprising.

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Shawni June 5, 2020 - 9:32 am

Such an interesting discussion, thank you so much for all the articles and videos and information shared, I am delving into all of it. And for those who have shared their experiences, thank you. I’m so grateful for the opportunity to learn from you.

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habil June 8, 2020 - 2:38 am

These are great suggestions and places to start!

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Janan W June 10, 2020 - 11:16 pm

Thanks for sharing Shawni, I think it’s important that those of us who want to be allies stand and speak up now. That we learn, and grow, and listen, and let our selves be uncomfortable as we gain new understanding, and that we take action to help change our systems and country now!

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