I am white. I am privileged.
Do I have your attention now?
I am privileged to be able to speed a little on the highway, and not have to worry that a cop will pull me over.
I am privileged to be able to walk by a neighbor at night, and not have them fear me and what I “may” do.
I am privileged to be able to send my child to school, and not have to worry that they will be treated differently, based on the color of their skin.
I am privileged to be able to walk into any restaurant or retail store, and no one makes assumptions that I cannot afford to be there.
I am privileged to be able to be a full-time stay-at-home mother.
I am privileged to have a college education.
I am privileged to have health insurance.
I am privileged to live in a community that is safe, where my children can play in our yard without having to worry about drive-by shootings or gang violence, both of which are very real fears for so many people.
While I understand that not only whites hold these privileges, these are privileges that I, myself, hold.
I am white and I am privileged.
And with that privilege, comes an incredible and powerful responsibility; a responsibility that I never, not even for a second, take lightly.
I have a responsibility to not stay silent. I have a responsibility to use my voice, for those that continue to be silenced. I have a responsibility to try and right the wrongs, as I see them. I have a responsibility to be an ally. I have a responsibility to educate myself, so as not to continue the spread of blissful ignorance. I have a responsibility to support, even if it just a shoulder to cry on. I have a responsibility to take action, and not remain silent, when I hear blatantly racist remarks. I have a responsibility to teach my children, that while someone may look different on the outside, it is what is on the inside that truly matters. I also have a responsibility to teach my children of the same responsibility that they hold.
I have a responsibility to stand up for those who are unable to stand up for themselves. I have a responsibility to use this platform to share the words of those who have been wronged; especially when wronged merely because of their skin color. I have a responsibility to not speak sometimes, but to merely listen. I have a responsibility to try and make a change, even if I am just one person.
Because our world NEEDS to change. It’s needed to change for hundreds of years, because sure, we’ve made strides forward, but every single day, we continue to fall twenty steps backward and it needs to stop.
However, it won’t stop with the heinous death of George Floyd, as it didn’t stop with the heinous death of Ahmaud Arbery, or the heinous deaths of the countless innocent individuals whose lives were taken solely out of pure hatred--or perhaps a fear of those that may “pose a threat” because they look different from us.
No, it will only begin to stop with us.
It will only begin to stop when those, who are white and privileged, continue to stand up and speak out.
It will only begin to stop when those, who are white and privileged, stop hiding in the shadows and letting the injustice continue.
I swore that when I started this platform, that I would always write from my heart. Whether it be on marriage, sisterhood, motherhood, or ANYTHING—I would always write true, even if it wasn’t what everyone wanted to hear.
Because, while I bear many responsibilities, one thing that is NOT my responsibility, is to make everyone happy. Truthfully, it is impossible to do, so I won’t even try.
I am sick of the divisiveness in this country and I am sick of the hate in this country.
So yes, I am white and I am privileged and I will carry out my responsibilities with pride and with honor.
What will you do?
Photo credit: Harper's Bazaar
This post was originally published on the author's Facebook page.