On secondhand oppression.
Thank you Shannan. I appreciate your thoughtfulness and humble heart. In Canada our most oppressed people group are the Indigenous People of Canada. Several years ago everything and anything with the Hudson Bay Stripe logo became hipster and trendy. Suddenly a store that was founded in Canada in the 1600’s was cool again. I’ll admit, I fell for it. Until I began to think deeper about the history of the original Hudson Bay Blanket, and what they symbolize. Small pox. Death of Indigenous People. The horrific attempts to oppress a people group. I threw out my “cool” striped mittens, and now walk around in ordinary red mitts. I definitely don’t always get it right, but it’s a good reminder to me to think deeper that what i first see in society.
Thank you for this essay, Shannon. Over the last year, like you, I have tried to read and listen and absorb. I've learned so much. But I think one of the biggest lessons is to just be quiet. I will stand against racism, especially when my voice is needed to communicate this to my white friends and family. But my friends who are people of color don't need me to be their spokesperson. I don't need them to keep patting me on the back for having their back. (I hope this makes sense--just this year, I learned that among the burdens POC carry, they have to keep explaining things to us white folks). Thanks for putting yourself in the middle of this discussion, by living it out and taking on the tough questions.
Thought provoking as always. Thanks for keeping us (more appropriately translated as "me"), off balance. Keep pushing us forward!
I so enjoyed reading this. As a white woman, I have thought and/or said many of the things you mention here, it never occurring to me they could be hurtful. Thank you for giving me an opportunity to think and consider other perspectives.
Hi Shannan. Thanks for being a leader and going first.
I first heard this track last autumn, 'You know it ain't' by Sault https://youtu.be/bx8u6MhweJs it's always a challenge. I hope that I've learnt something in the last year. I hope I keep growing.
"But it had become part of the WHITE noise of my daily life. I didn’t think about it much at all."
I know that you didn't intend the hidden double meaning of this line. Nevertheless, it struck me that we can be so consumed by our daily, white lives that we fail to see the disparity of others' lives around us. I am part of a Moms in Prayer group where most of the moms are Asian. I'm seeing how they have been mistreated during this pandemic!
Thank you for speaking up.
This one was especially moving for me. Your honesty is humbling. I have much to think about and am sharing with my kids. Thank you! Sending love to you and your amazing kids!
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