Boy 2016. In my life I have my fair share of bullies and bias mongers.
It is one of the reasons I believe part of my destiny is to live in the US. Nowhere in the world can you be completely enveloped by the labels of human trafficking with so little effort. It's almost macabre delight. I am in process of running a social experiment where I purposely minimized direct contact or any contact with a group of people to see what the outcome could be. It is so interesting to watch ...and observe the narrative being created.
It's not in my head. The election process solidified that Americans, as an aggregated group, tend toward their historical biases in 2016. So, just as folks are claiming diversity will expand our humanity, the pull towards segregation and bias is deep seated.
What does this mean In my own life? When I moved here 20 years ago, I had a young undergraduate mentee who came from leading-class wealthy Botswana. She asked: Is this how it is every day? Do you think about being Black every day? You don't just live?
The answer: Yep. Yep. Yep. Everyday for 20+ years.
Even if you are just living, doing your work, taking care of your kids and showing up as a human ( joy, foibles, smiles and warts), your biased coworkers or racist neighbors or the undertravelled store clerks or your protect-your-safety flight attendant, may only see and think about their whiteness or brownness with respect to your blackness.
Someone has to do the work of standing in this bias and taking aloud. Even if, the only statement made is in silence. And through the choice of taking a stand by not running and not hiding.
This decade continues with more tough conversations, all part of the work we do to drive positive change.