It could work, if we try

Some people say, we will never defeat racism until we are able to talk about it without anyone getting their dander up. Others say we need to quit talking about it so much. I’m not sure which is right, but the truth of the matter is probably somewhere in the middle of both of those beliefs.
It’s a tough subject to tackle, even tougher to talk about, depending on the parties involved. I won’t pretend to know the answers or solutions and I’m not sure which direction we need to go in but I do know we can’t continue down the same path.
Because “racism” has become the catch phrase of the day; because it incites so many people; some have taken to calling everything they encounter, racism. It’s not so. It’s really hard to say that we aren’t racist, either. If you’ve ever been in a situation where you are the minority and felt fear or uneasiness, that could be considered racist.
Wanting to preserve history is not racist. It happened, whether good, bad, indifferent or embarrassing and trying to get rid of everything that reminds you of it, is not the answer. Those who fail to remember the past (history) are condemned to repeat it. I do believe that to be true.
To me racism is sometimes in the eye of the beholder. If you perceive something to be that way, in other words, it usually becomes so. Racism and discrimination are two different things, but some people confuse the two.
At another newspaper I worked for, a woman in the community came by my office every week to inform me that week I only had a certain number of a particular ethnic group in a photo. This went on for about a month and she would not stop long enough for me to have a conversation with her about it. Just run in, say the number and leave.
I was floored. I never took a picture of any kind purposely including or excluding anyone or staging it to look a certain way. I wasn’t going to stop and count because doing so I felt would have been racist. One day she came in and I followed her out to the car, insisting she hear me out. I told her my perspective and how she was making me think negatively and that I did not want to do that at all. She was trying to get in her car but I was leaning against the door. She finally listened. We hugged and she never came back into my office with numbers of certain people in photos.
You can’t make a determination about anything without hearing both or all sides. In today’s world people want to have their say, but don’t care and don’t want to listen to what anyone else has to say unless it happens to agree with their way of thinking. That my friend, is not the way freedom works.
Politicians use the word “racism” more and more to divide and conquer us. It’s a volatile subject and they know it and know using it can evoke hate. Unfortunately, the mainstream media has jumped on that bandwagon and we need to wake up before it’s too late.
The wall the president is wanting to build is not racist, as some claim. He is not wanting to keep a certain race out, he is wanting to keep illegals out regardless of their race. What part of illegal people don’t get, I don’t understand.
We’ve got to start thinking for ourselves and quit listening to politicians and the mainstream media. We have to determine in our hearts and minds that we will not be divided by them and the untruths put forth.
God tells us to love our neighbor as ourselves. We’ve got to start loving people.
We are forced to declare what race we are on countless forms and other paperwork. Supposedly for the sake of statistics, etc. The one take away from my college statistics class was that statistics can say whatever point you want to prove. Therefore, I don’t put any confidence in any of them.
Why can’t we all just state that we are human beings. We are you know. No matter the color of our skin, we all bleed the same, we all are born and we all are going to die one day. I believe we also just need to become “Americans” without any hyphenation indicating ethnicity. We are diverse nation and should be celebrating our differences instead of fighting about them but to become united in that, we need to all just be Americans.
If we are to overcome racism, everyone must quit playing the victim in all situations and quit blaming other people. It’s the 21st century for goodness sake and each of us are to blame for the choices we make and we suffer the consequences of bad or unhealthy choices. My great grandparents were Indians and my grandmother was a very poor farmer. She had to work hard every day of her life and I have not had it easy myself, so there is no “privilege” at all there.
We need to quit making everything racist and if you see things that way, perhaps you need to examine your heart. We have also got to quit voting for candidates because of skin color or gender. It has gotten us into messes we may never be able to get over. Vote for morals and those candidates who best reflect your values. Their skin color or gender has nothing to do with that whatsoever and doesn’t indicate whether they will be a good leader or not.. All people, regardless of skin color, can also be racist. It’s not just relegated to one race.
Let’s all just be humans and become pro-human. Quit letting politicians or the press divide us. We need to deconstruct the words black and white and forget about what either means. Let’s just be Americans, treating each other with love and respect and if we do so, I believe one day we will see racism go away. ©2019
VICTORIA SIMMONS Is a columnist, author, motivational speaker, minister and publisher of The Georgia Post/Byron Buzz. Contact her at: vsimmons54@gmail.com

About vsimmons54

Veteran journalist of 40 years. Editor, Motivational Speaker, Ordained Minister, CEO of A Light in the Darkness Ministries, Copy Editor, Copywriting, Event Planner, Lensclusive Photography, Babbling Brook Consulting and Design, event planner and author. I love to write and speak and I love Jesus. I also do copy writing and editing. Recently co-authored Vanished Towns Revisited.
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