White friends, colleagues, peers, and neighbors –
White people who played with me as a child and sent well-wishes to my parents –
White people who invited me to your homes and welcomed me at your tables –
White people who were friends with my sister and had drinks with my Dad –
White people who prayed beside my Grandmother and worked beside my Mom –
White people who voted for Obama and voted for Trump –
White people who made room on public transit and held open elevator doors –
White people I know and white people I don’t –
White people who have power and white people who won’t –
White people in general –
What. Say. You.
What say you?
As he reorders our democracy to enshrine white nationalist power, what say you?
And what are you doing?
Are you silent and on the sidelines, unscathed by the vitriol because you are unsupportive of its arbiter?
Do you grapple with this violence, both rhetorical and physical, meted for your racial advancement or is your struggle brief?
How does it feel to be white in the midst of a white supremacist insurgence in America?
Do you hope to passively benefit from language that resurrects a nation where only white people belong or hold political power?
How are you making sense of the ways hateful, racist words make it fundamentally easier for people who look like you to move in this country and feel free?
Are you comfortable in spaces at home, in community, at work, school, and church where only people who look like you can be safe and thrive?
What do you see as your responsibility, right now, in this very moment, as the President of the United States articulates and executes a political agenda that limits the rights and protections of all kinds of people, simply because they are not you?
And what do you say to other white people, especially those who will never ascend to the power or wealth that Trump’s whiteness promises? What do you say to those whom whiteness is failing?
White people, what, if anything, in these dire political times, do you feel compelled to say or do?
I ask these questions honestly and earnestly and with a bit of impatience. I ask them with the full intent that at least some white people will respond.
If you would like to respond publicly, I invite you to my twitter thread in which some white folks have already spoken. Or if you feel so inclined, sound off in these comments below.
And if you know me in real life, I invite you to call me. Text me. Email me.
Whether I see you in clinic, in the grocery store, or in my gym, I need to know where you stand.