We all have our own experience of life. You have yours, I have mine, the person to your left has another. Every single one is exactly different. That unique perspective is the basis for everything. Ev.A.Ry.Thing. And because that perspective differs from person to person, so arises discrepancy. I say, “but no it’s this way!” And you say, “no, you’re wrong, it’s definitely this way,” and the person to your left plugs in their own way. Three versions of reality (and by 3 I mean 7 billion), all correct in their own way, but none exactly the same.
The problem in America right now is highlighting the fact that the black perspective has been silenced for too long. Shunned, in a sense. Fighting, tooth and nail, for equality in a society that doesn’t seem to want to help. Their reality is not the majority and therefore the majority believe all is well when an entire portion of the population is saying it’s not. Screaming it, in fact.
And now, in a time where the deeply embedded wound that is racism is bubbling up and literally being filmed for the world to see, the divide becomes even more real because America’s denial of its biggest internal conflict is staring itself in the mirror. Begging us to save ourselves from our own hatred, our own fear.
Racism is a problem in America, a huge one. One of the oldest and deepest. And when someone of a different races says that’s the case, you don’t get to tell them it’s not. It’s their reality. Plain and simple. And if it’s a version of reality for one, it’s a version of reality for a multitude. And if it’s a version of reality for a multitude, then it’s all of our duty to create change. Period. If you agree that all humans are created equal, then you should stand diligently in that stance when a pool of your own community is saying that’s not the case for them. Don’t listen with the intent to belittle or persuade their perspective, don’t name call or stereotype, HEAR them. Realize that there are versions of reality right in your backyard that you couldn’t possible fathom.
So what, then, do we do? That’s been something I’ve been parsing over a lot. What can be done? How do we create sustainable change? The first answer, to me, is to listen. Listening to a perspective that you couldn’t fathom allows you to empathize with a new reality. Different, uncomfortable, yes. But valid nonetheless. Empathy begets love begets unity. And ultimately, what do we all want? Unity. We all want this to end. We all want to line up on equal ground and stand next to our brothers and sisters. All humans. All created equal. All with limitless potential. All with something we can teach each other.
Close your eyes for once and just listen. Learn. Empathize. There’s no coincidence that love is the highest feeling, because love can move mountains. Love, when stronger than fear, is what creates sustainable change. Sometimes that means your love is going to have to say no, none of that, not in my house. It means your love will have to take an uncomfortable stand. It means that your love might actually have to be bold in its action. But really, what other option do we have?
We have to change ourselves; Save ourselves. The only way we’re ever going to evolve, is together. We’re better together.
With Love, Solé