• Hillaree

Black is 100% Human

Updated: Jun 24, 2020

Last week, I had the absolute privilege to host a conversation with some people from the Black community. We shared our stories, experiences, and opinions. It's so easy to assume that racism is not happening if we don't see a video of someone shouting racial slurs at a Black person, or yet another video of an officer murdering an unarmed Black individual. The truth is, it does exist, everyday, in small ways, big ways, obvious ways and not so obvious ways. I wanted to share some of what was said during the conversation because I feel it is so important for this type of conversation to go beyond our Zoom call.




Many of us came to the realization of the repercussions of our skin colour from a very young age. It looked different for everyone involved in the conversation, and I am positive there are countless stories amongst the Black community. I'm sure you're thinking...racism? In Canada? What does that even look like? It looked like, being denied a slice of pizza at the pizza store, but when the caucasian person behind them asked for the same slice, it was now, all of a sudden available. Or the time someone hit a Black gentleman's car while he was with his mother, to then follow that by coming out, and spitting on their windshield before driving off. There was also the time, when they noticed a change of tone in their uncles voice when he was speaking to a White person on the phone. Clearly illustrating that as a Black person you have to know how to operate around certain people. Don't forget about the time, everyone asked a young girl if her hair was real, and would then proceed to pulling her hair without asking, as if they were at petting zoo. And because you know, she would of course be lying about her hair being real. Right? How about the time, a young intelligent woman was concerned about whether or not she should identify as a 'minority' when applying for school because she wanted to get accepted because she was smart, not because the school had a Black student quota to hit.


At times, I personally feel that I have to restrict myself from being too loud or too rambunctious, for the fear of being 'too Black', or that I shouldn't stick up for myself when I am bombarded with yet another stereotype. For the fear of making people feel uncomfortable around me, because I'm concerned about potentially damaging the relationships I have. Why is it, that I am nervous to make them uncomfortable when I am simply advocating for myself, when they were the ones that made me uncomfortable to begin with? Why must we feel uncomfortable when engaging in a conversation with the police? The people that are appointed to protect us. Why do we feel uncomfortable when we leave a store without buying something, because we are worried about the employees making the assumption that we stole something or couldn't afford anything in the store anyway? Why are we made to feel uncomfortable accepting scholarships specifically created for people of colour, to be left to feel like it was only given because of our skin colour and could not be possibly due to our intellectual merit? Why do we feel uncomfortable talking about the injustices polluting the Black community?



It's about time these hard conversations start happening, and often. I encourage you to talk to your circles about this very issue, this HUMAN RIGHTS ISSUE. Research, read up on, and educate yourself about the history and the ways that oppression is still prevalent to this day, and how you can potentially be perpetuating racism. Think about the indirect consequence of your words and how it could be harmful to the Black community. & if so, be open to when it is being communicated to you, that you are causing harm.


Sign petitions, talk to your friends, show up to protests, support Black businesses & educate yourself.



Here are some petitions you can sign and be apart of the change we desperately need in this world, it will take 5 seconds out of your day, but will have an everlasting impact.


Hands Up Act


Sign this petition to move towards a time where police officers WILL be punished with a minimum of 15 years for killing an unarmed civilian.


http://chng.it/SwgfV5HNHp


Justice for Ahmaud Arbery


Recognize Ahmaud Arbery, an unarmed Black man, who was murdered while going for a jog.


http://chng.it/NNQdpvpBDB


#DefundThePolice


Sign this petition to defund the police and reallocate those funds into the community. The way it should be.


https://blacklivesmatter.com/defundthepolice/


Educate Ya Selves


White Fragility: Why It's So Hard For White People To Talk About


So You Want To Talk About Race


How To Be An Antiracist



All lives cannot matter until Black Lives Matter. It really is that simple.



-Hillaree










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