If only we could stop talking about racism . . .
We’ve all heard some form of the following:
- I don’t think people should talk about race because (insert reason XYZ).
- I wish people would stop talking about race.
- I think our problem is that people keep talking about it (race/racism).
- I don’t see race.
- We need to stop talking about race; it isn’t about race, we’re all human.
- People are too obsessed with race.
- If they just didn’t have a racial mentality, we could move forward. (Note: I have literally read these words “racial mentality” and I am still at a lost as to what this is supposed to mean.)
For a moment, ever so small and fleeting, I thought race and racism was taking its rightful spot: center stage. I thought that this debut was the beginning of a long successful career. Alas, it seems to be a one-hit wonder.
Fatigue has set in, barely 6 weeks later. The (minor) discomforts reading and discussing race for nearly 6 weeks has become unbearable for some newly baptized folks. And let us not forget those that never joined the conversation to begin with — the “neutral”, the “colorblind”, and the “it’s rude to discuss such things”.
So here we are, in a burgeoning silence, emerging in our daily lives. A silence that was present and never went away. A silencing of those finally given their deserved opportunity, their spotlight, their time and moment to be heard.
Indeed, at this moment, I am being treated to a request, a demand, an order to cease and desist. And quite frankly, I don’t understand any of these commands.
When talking to domestic violence victims, or survivors, do we tell them to stop talking about their ordeal? Do we tell them by remaining silent they and their family can move forward?
With the advent of #MeToo was the narrative, was the campaign slogan: “Remain Silent! Rape and sexual harassment will go away, if we just stop talking about it.”
In national and international news concerning systemic abuse cases, did we tell victims/survivors of the Catholic Church, the Boy Scouts, or even those within our circle that…