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Letter 1: Dear White America

Updated: Jun 3, 2020

Dear White America,

I first got the idea for this blog(? campaign? project?) back in 2016 when the Clinton/Trump election campaigns were in full swing. The original working title was "To White America, With Love." I was frustrated with what I saw around me: the anger, the hate, the feeling that there were two sides merely screaming at a brick wall between them. And it was all white people. As a white person, I wanted to reach out and engage with people whose skin colors are similar to mine yet whose viewpoints are so disparate. But I was scared (for no good reason) and tired (for no reason at all) and felt "stuck" (even though I could have pushed), so TWAWL never got off its feet.

Until now.

Dear White America, I am a white woman born and raised outside of Dallas, Texas, who grew up in the Catholic Church, and relocated to Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, when I was 18 years old to begin both undergrad and my adult life. I still live in Pittsburgh, studying to become a lawyer. On paper, I am a Southern Christian girl who moved to the Rust Belt to spread her wings (*cue the Dixie Chicks*).

I am one of many white women in America who have been on the periphery of the movement for racial justice. I grew comfortable in my self-proclaimed title of "ally" without doing the hard work of fully coming to terms with my own ingrained racism and without a strong enough conviction to do more than follow Instagram accounts and share salient posts with my followers. This lack of difficult self-inquiry made me an active part of the problem that I thought I was "fighting" against.

It is now the end of May 2020, and America is in the middle of two pandemics: COVID-19 and police brutality against Black Americans. After beginning my own on-going work of self-reflection and recommitment to anti-racism (more on that later), I am taking a cue from my Black brothers and sisters, listening to their messages to us White Americans, and taking the oath to speak up and stand up against white-perpetuated ignorant and racist behavior.

So, White America - let's do our (long overdue, incredibly belated) part to step back, listen up, and hold ourselves accountable for our own actions and inactions, and the actions and inactions of our friends and family members. Over the course of this "diablogue" (dialogue/blog), I will try to wrestle with the "Big Topics" that many White Americans grapple with when facing contemporary Civil Rights Movements -- the major "walls", so to speak, that many white Americans hit when faced with news of protests and #BLM:

For example: White Privilege (and do you have it?); Being White and Poor in America; But my ancestors didn't own slaves!; I have what I have because I worked for it, no other reason; I'm white and have had a lot of struggles in my life.

Each post will contain resources for us white people to use to better understand both ourselves and our community members of color. The resources I share will be from Black-moderated sources and Black content creators.

My words are not flawless, as there is always more learning and growing to do. I will do my best to be a bridge, though, between these "two worlds" that exist in our country, in an effort to guide White America through the difficult unlearning we have to do before resembling any semblance of e pluribus unum.

Until the next time.


#whiteamerica #blacklivesmatter #blm #racism #endracism #endwhitesupremacy #endcashbail #policereform #nojusticenopeace #endwhitesilence #whiteprivilege #wenotme

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