I would like make something available to you that I hope you find helpful.
This is a ‘workshop on whiteness’ that I developed in 2015 and then updated a little bit last year. PDF: Whiteness Workshop Sanders
If you are interested in learning more about race and specifically the issue of whiteness then I want to be here for you during this important time in our nation’s history.
Let me tell you who I am looking for. Let’s say that there is a whiteness spectrum that goes from Level 1 (white normative – pull your pants up, speak English, don’t give your kids weird names) to Level 10 (Woke AF) then here is how I map that spectrum.
Level 2: not racist but snarky and defensive (they can say the N-word but we can’t?)
Level 3: I want to say Black Lives Matter but doesn’t All Lives include black ones?
Level 4: I get that people are upset but …
Level 5: Can’t we all just get along?
Level 6: Something is really wrong isn’t it?
I am looking for people who are at Level 2, 3, 4, or 5 and want to move to level 6.
- If you don’t know what POC stands for.
- If you get told to ‘check your privilege’.
- If you don’t understand how race could be a ‘construct’.
- If you think that bringing up race is racist.
Now, if you are more advanced than I am (Woke AF) then I bless you on your journey and say, ‘you know the work that you need to do – get busy – we need you in the struggle’.
Also, if you are Level 1, I am not sure I can help you. That doesn’t mean that you can’t be helped – only that I am not the person to help. It is too close to some bad experiences I had when I was younger and I don’t tend to have the best reactions.
If, however, you are at Level 3 (I want to say that Black Lives Matter) or Level 4 (I get that people are up but …) or Level 5 (Can’t we all just get along?) then I would like to make myself available to you.
I offer you a couple of things:
- Read this Whiteness Workshop (35 pages) and keep track of any questions, concerns, or objections that you have.
- Invite a friend or two to do this exercise with you.
- Email me any questions you want to ask but don’t feel like you can without getting in trouble.
- Let me know if a phone call would be preferred and we can set that up.
You may be thinking, “can’t I just ask a person of color that I know?”
It is not their job to educate us white people or carry our emotional burden. Communities of color have their own work that they are doing right now. Educating ourselves about issues of race and specifically whiteness is our labor right now.
So, if you are intrigued but what I am offering and would identify yourself as within the window on my whiteness scale, then I would truly love to be a resource for you during this time.
June 4, 2020 at 11:07 pm
A lot of pieces are coming together …
All my life, the quest for knowing … to have the broadest of boundaries … to enjoy the best that we humans can muster, so as to weather the storms of our worst.