What can I do? There are articles galore, lists galore, books galore – no dearth of resources and actions online and in publications. It’s not about you doing everything; it’s about all of us doing something.
You are encouraged to be willing to be uncomfortable, to read challenging works from sources you may not ordinarily seek out, and to be intentional in doing both the inner work and the active work in the world that we are called to as Christians: to strive for justice and peace among all people and respect the dignity of every human being.
This list is not meant to be comprehensive, but provides examples of ways to get more involved in addressing racism and working for change.
The place every one of us can start is in ourselves, by honestly facing our cultural biases, both conscious and unconscious. A meme going around on social media says:
Here’s an example of how white privilege sounds: You keep saying, “It’s horrible that an innocent black man was killed, but destroying property has to stop.” Try saying, “It’s horrible that property is being destroyed, but killing innocent black men has to stop.” You’re prioritizing the wrong part.
Read Dean Thomason’s recent statement on racism and violence here.
Where to start?
- Educate yourself.
- Do your inner work.
- Listen – and speak up.
- Participate in and financially support organizations run by people of color.
- Show up and volunteer.
Do the ongoing work:
- Call legislators and police departments, and write letters and emails. They do get counted!
- Work for voting rights and voter registration in communities of color.
- Speak up when you hear racist talk.
- Listen when people of color speak, even if their message makes you uncomfortable.
- Remember S.A.S. – STOP. ASK. STAY. When you see a person of color being questioned or hassled: Stop — Ask “Are you okay?” — Stay and be a witness.
- Show up in solidarity – not violence.
- Do the inner work to face the cultural and inherited racism in yourself: read, listen, participate in workshops and programs on dismantling racism.
- Follow the lead of people of color; join an organization run by people of color.
- Support black-owned businesses. Here is one list: http://seattlerefined.com/lifestyle/support-black-owned-businesses-in-seattle
- White Fragility: Why It’s So Hard for White People to Talk about Racism by Robin DiAngelo
- So You Want to Talk About Race by Ijeoma Oluo
- Between the World and Me by Ta-Nehisi Coates
- The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness by Michelle Alexander
- Local Alternative Papers like The Stranger: thestranger.com
- African American News Today: africanamericans.einnews.com
- African American News Sites list: https://mediablog.prnewswire.com/2018/02/14/top-african-american-news-sites/
Urban League of Metropolitan Seattle: urbanleague.org/volunteer
Black Lives Matter, Seattle Chapter: blacklivesseattle.org
First AME Church of Seattle (African Methodist Episcopal): www.fameseattle.org
ACLU of Washington: https://www.aclu-wa.org/
Faith Action Network (FAN) of Washington: fanwa.org
NW Community Bail Fund: www.nwcombailfund.org/get-involved
Black Lives Matter Seattle-King County Bail Fund: blacklivesseattle.org/bail-fund/
Church Council of Greater Seattle: thechurchcouncil.org
Color of Change [national online organization]: colorofchange.org
Other lists of resources
Black Lives Matter: A Guide to Resistance Events, Black-Owned Restaurants, and Other Ways to Stand Against Racism in Seattle
The Stranger has published this excellent list of resources, references, and recommendations.
The Bureau of Fearless Ideas [pdf]
The Seattle branch of the Dave Eggers-founded writing nonprofit suggests accounts to follow, books by black authors, donation sites, direct action literature, and podcasts about race.
Seattle Rep’s Racial Justice Resources
Seattle Repertory Theatre has compiled links to local and national donation sites, memorial funds, petitions, and education material, plus numbers to call to demand justice for George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor, and Tony McDade.
Resources from The Episcopal Church, including Presiding Bishop Michael Curry’s recent Pentecost sermon, scriptures and liturgies for prayer and healing, and ways to participate in justice initiatives.
Anti-Racism Resources [google doc]
This list compiled by Sarah Sophie Flicker and Alyssa Klein includes tons of articles, videos, podcasts, books, films and TV, and other links “intended to serve as a resource to white people and parents to deepen our anti-racism work.”
Resources for children and teens
A collective network of Episcopal formation leaders has put together a wonderful anti-racist reading list for students (bracketed by age) and parents. We love God by loving one another, and it’s never too soon to talk to our children about the differences they see, and to practice love by dismantling racism. Let us know if you read them, and send us a quick review to share with other families
Even babies notice differences like skin color, eye shape and hair texture. Here’s how to handle conversations about race, racism, diversity and inclusion, even with very young children.
A list of 100(!) race-conscious things you can say to your child to advance racial justice.
Explore the many fantastic (online) offerings for high school and junion-high students coming soon this summer, from this interfaith organization with longstanding ties to Saint Mark’s.
What does Love Do? [pdf]
A printable document for families from The Episcopal Church. Put it on your fridge, and be reminded throughout the day that love is the way!
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