Black Lives Matter – the Importance of Cultivating Anti-Racism in the Future

Black Lives Matter . But black lives didn't matter when they were once inhumanely transported like cattle from Africa; black lives didn't matter when they were attacked by dogs when protesting for equality rights.

With the weekly news cycle that includes the death of at least one black boy at the hands of police in the United States or the body of a black woman thrown to the ground by local police, the desire to fight for human rights emerges in all of us, defending the lives of the black community.

We don't need to have all the answers for our voice to make a difference. An authentic intention to listen and learn will always be a more than valid guide. It's about being able to do our part – without labels, without half-truths. Being anti-racist is a continuous process and you have to start it, knowing that there will be failures along the way.

The journey to becoming true allies of the Black community, guiding us towards action, is not linear. This is because we all make mistakes throughout our lives and taking action requires effort; It requires us to look deeply within ourselves in order to discover our attachments. Attachments to prejudices; attachments to choices; attachments to oppressive thought patterns.

Racism is a global problem and is everywhere. But the first step towards contributing to change can be taken when we understand our privileges and what they mean. And understanding racism, instead of feeling it firsthand, is a privilege. We must continue to educate ourselves and those around us, otherwise the atrocities will never stop.

Stating that black lives are important does not imply that other lives are not.

When you say that black lives are important, you are not saying that other lives are not important – of course all lives have value. But do we really have to say it that way? The Black Lives Matter movement is about equality. An equality that we are far from achieving.

Does society serve and protect “black lives” in the same way as “white” ones? To what extent is there justice towards the black community? Is it present in every unjustified murder, in every discrimination and prejudiced attitude? If we try to respond to all of this, we will quickly understand that it is time to be part of this change – every day.

Ask yourself: what privileges and prejudices do you have? What are the subjects where you feel you need to re-educate yourself? How can you transform what you are learning about anti-racism into concrete actions? Question yourself, without ever stopping trying. Continue to learn and be tolerant and empathetic towards others, as small gestures can make a huge difference.

Do your part. Read books that challenge your prejudices, meet people of other races, watch films or documentaries that deconstruct your standards and beliefs. And, above all, don't close your eyes when you come across a racist act, whether big or small. It's time to act now.

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