Why It's Not Enough to be Neutral

relationships Jun 09, 2020

I recently came across Ibram X Kendi's book, How to be an Antiracist.  It's not a new book, but it has recently been launched to the top of the charts in light of recent events.

Although I've only just started the book, two of the concepts struck me as so profound, and so utterly useful, that I wanted to share them in this week's Intentional Tuesday.

The first is the idea that we should change the way we think about the word "racist".  These days we tend to apply this to "people" rather than to ideas and systems.  This is a problem for multiple reasons.  For one, it's incredibly easy to distance ourselves from the issue by saying ... I'm not a racist.  It's never that simple.  Racism is about ideas, systems and policies.  To focus on people, we miss the bigger picture.

The second mind-blowing concept is that there's no such thing as neutrality when it comes to racism.  It's not enough to say ... I'm not a racist, or I don't have racist views.  Instead, we need to adopt a position of antiracism, whereby we aggressively reject racist ideas and aggressively support antiracist ideas and policies.  

As I said, I'm early into the book, but these two ideas are worth the price of admission, in my opinion.  They have the power to shift the way we think about the situation of racial inequality in our country.  I'm hopeful that Ibram provides tactical ideas for how to implement antiracism in day-to-day life and I will share these ideas as I come across them or have some of my own.  I encourage you to do the same.

Be safe.  Be well.  Be kind.

Prosperous Journey,



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