If Only You’d Be More Like Me: After years of wanting to help and fix others, I learned I had my own work to do

Chapter 35 of Waking Up White: and finding myself in the story of RACE by Debbie Irving

Can you make a list of the ways in which America’s dominant culture has left an imprint on you? I could not have created much of a list before this journey. If you have trouble making one, you’re not alone!

  1. I feel free to step up and answer questions when they are put to a group.
  2. I am never afraid of being shot or arrested when I see a policeman. Even if I’m speeding (which I rarely do), my first thought is of the fine.
  3. I’ve NEVER been afraid to go to the polls to vote.
  4. I wasn’t reluctant to go to my children’s schools or to question teachers’ punishment or instructions.
  5. My kids were always welcomed in sports and other clubs (if we could pay for it).
  6. I knew I could go to college if I had enough money or if I could get a scholarship.
  7. I participate in Social Media, and if people disagree with me, I’m fine with that. If they are rude or abusive, I have no problem “unfriending” them.
  8. I have a choice about where I want to live (as long as I can afford it).
  9. Car salesmen and realtors are happy to see me.
  10. I can talk about race if I want to – but I don’t have to train my kids to keep quiet and not call attention to themselves.
  11. I can walk down the street without fearing a policeman will stop and question me.
  12. I’m comfortable volunteering in the neighborhood and at church.

I know there are many more examples. Do you have any others to share?

If you would like to join me as I blog about my experiences with race, please read the book. It was life changing for me.

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