When Roslyn Crouch was released from jail near New Orleans, she went home and made dinner for her children.
Her story, along with stories of prisoners all over the country, makes a reader pause to ask: Will this pandemic will make us reconsider the way we incarcerate people in this country? Will it change how we treat people once they become prisoners?
Law enforcement didn’t help make Roslyn Crouch’s community safer when it put her in jail this past March, exposing her to Covid-19. It’s clearly not working in this country for so many people, men like George Floyd, and others who have lost their lives to police violence. The people who enforce the laws aren’t above the law, and the laws themselves need to work equitably - for all people.
Here’s where I am: Despite spending a good amount of time educating myself, reflecting on my biases, talking to my kids, sending money to organizations, and identifying as an anti-racist, I have not done enough of the work toward changing the structures and institutions that uphold white supremacy and racism in this country. I want to change that.
All weekend I’ve been thinking about what it means to embody a value. If I value equity, how do I embody it? If I value anti-racism, how do I embody it? How do I embody love?
How do you?
Maybe a stack of actions of all shapes and sizes? I was chatting today with some parents and friends out on the street about how we talk to our white children about racism, police brutality, and white supremacy.
The more I do it, the more I realize I have to do it every. single. day. It's a practice. It's taking a moment out of our privilege bubble, the bubble that makes it possible for us to not really worry about what happens to our loved ones when they go for a run or go to the convenience store.
One friend said when it comes to talking with kids about tough stuff, it's not necessarily about one 100-minute BIG TALK. It's about 100 1-minute talks, and then some. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
Today's sidewalk chalking was one 10-minute thing (and it was fun!). It's what we do the day after that and the day after that and the day after that - the stacking of actions and conversations- that will help us raise children empowered to confront the brutal system of white supremacy and encourage their white friends and family to do the same. It takes effort, patience, creativity, humor, and persistence.
I’d love to hear how you are talking to your kids about race. How are you talking to little ones vs. 10-yr-olds vs. teens? What are your kids saying back? ⠀
Some reading that resonated this week:
Amy Cooper is nothing new.
Black mothers’ pain.
Why are white people allowed to claim “no culture?”