Time to listen, and level up

✊🏻✊🏼✊🏽✊🏾✊🏿 (#305)

Hi fellow members of the human race

I’m making this issue free to read for everyone, because for once, I want it to reach as many people as possible. I spent this past week – like most of you, I suppose – watching the events in the USA unfold. I did so with horror, disbelief, anger, sadness…and shame. Shame that I’m not nearly as invested in anti-racism as I should be.

This issue is all about listening, learning and working on leveling up one’s own actions.

That’s the least we can do. And there’s more we can do: Supporting those who have been in this fight for much longer and have a much more direct impact.

So if you decide to upgrade to a paid subscription for the Weekly Filet now, I will donate the full amount to the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, and match it with the same amount to Black Girls Code.

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If you want to learn more about the Weekly Filet, read this. If you know someone who should also know about this, please forward this email to them.

Thank you.
– David

1. How to deconstruct racism, one headline at a time

«I walk around in fear, because I know that someone seeing me as a threat can become a threat to my life, and I am tired. I am tired of carrying this invisible burden of other people's fears, and many of us are, and we shouldn't have to, because we can change this, because we can change the action, which changes the story, which changes the system that allows those stories to happen. Systems are just collective stories we all buy into. When we change them, we write a better reality for us all to be a part of. I am asking us to use our power to choose. I am asking us to level up.» — Baratunde Rafiq Thurston. Watch.

2. It Does Not Matter If You Are Good

«You learn that there will be moments, random and unbidden, where to save your life you must  convince a stranger that you are in some amorphous way good. And at the same time you learn that it probably will not make a difference.» — R. Eric Thomas. Read.

3. Your lack of imagination is killing us

«But while rage can lead to tragedy, it is also a terrible thing to waste. Rage can be useful, necessary even. It fuels our pride and lubricates our resilience. With discipline and unity, rage can change the world. So be enraged with us and for us. If you’re unwilling to do that, know this: You can look away all you want. But we see you.» — Kasi Lemmons. Read.

4. The American Nightmare

«History is calling the future from the streets of protest. What choice will we make? What world will we create? What will we be? There are only two choices: racist or anti-racist.» — Ibram X. Kendi. Read.

5. What I Said When My White Friend Asked for My Black Opinion on White Privilege

«As to you ‹being part of the problem›, trust me, nobody is mad at you for being white. Nobody. Just like nobody should be mad at me for being black. Or female. Or whatever. But what is being asked of you is to acknowledge that white privilege does exist and not only to treat people of races that differ from yours ‹with respect and humor›, but also to stand up for fair treatment and justice, not to let ‹jokes› or ‹off-color› comments by friends, co-workers, or family slide by without challenge, and to continually make an effort to put yourself in someone else’s shoes.» — Lori Lakin Hutcherson. Read.

6. What do we tell the children?

«It is time to abandon white racial innocence and stop lying to white children. Children are not stupid and they learn white supremacy as quickly as they acquire language. They are well aware that people are treated differently based on skin color.» — Steve Locke. Read.

7. George Floyd and Living Without the Benefit of the Doubt

«Not very long ago, a well-meaning white acquaintance asked me how it felt to incessantly think about living, in the United States, in the shadow of total police impunity. I answered, after blinking at him, by saying that I didn’t incessantly think about it. Nor did I not incessantly think about it. It’s just the same way that you (and you know who you are) don’t think about putting one foot in front of the other.» — Bryan Washington. Read.

What else?

If you found this valuable, you’ll probably like future issues of this newsletter, too. If you opt for one of the paid plans, I’ll donate twice the amount you pay, as detailed in the intro above.

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