So far this month we’ve talked about taking “baby steps” towards social justice and letting others out of the box in which we’ve mentally confined them. If we wait to act until we know what we are doing, we will never learn what needs to be done. Taking a small, vulnerable step forward takes us from being bystanders (who contribute to social injustice), to becoming an active part of addressing the oppression. What is your first baby-step? It can be as small as reading a book authored from a marginalized perspective or learning about your own heritage. If you are a member of a minority/marginalized group, read something from the member of a different minority group.
We’ve also talked about boxing people up and letting them out. It’s human tendancy to categorize, but we need to let our interactions with others and their experiences positively inform our thinking about them. You can begin to let others “out of the box” by openly learning from them; non-judgmentally seeking to understand their perspectives, strengths, and contributions.
So, with that refreshed in our minds, let’s talk about acting.
Acting. I’m not talking about screen plays or Broadway or costumes and scripts. I’m not talking about pretending to be something you’re not. I’m definitely not talking about entertainment. I’m talking about real life work; interested, integrated, effective work. I’m talking about taking action; actually doing something with what you’ve learned.
Acting on the information, taking action towards change, doing something with knowledge involves attentively observing the needs in your community and creatively addressing those with the strengths and equipping you possess. What will that look like? I don’t know…. Yet. It’s going to be a unique and beautiful combination of your strengths, training, and knowledge as those traits mix with your communities’ needs and strengths. I don’t know what this will look like because you have yet to create it. But when you do, I sure hope you’ll write me and let me see the wonder! Perhaps one of my baby-steps will be learning from your baby-steps. Perhaps your baby-steps will refine my mental box and create exponential benefit in both our communities.
Photo Credit: Third and Wonder Prod, https://nappy.co/thirdandwonder
We are aware of the magnitude of this subject matter and the inadequate brevity of this post. For more, please reference our podcasts, our 1Community groups, or feel free to email us at Uniquelythesame@mission1race.org.
We also wish to address our inability to consider issues of sexual, physical, emotional, and spiritual abuse in our discussions on developing understanding and oneness. If you are in an abusive situation of any kind, we encourage you to seek professional and other help; and to realize that this content does not necessarily apply to your circumstances.