Anti-Racism

A N T I - R A C I S M 

Anti-racism is a lifetime commitment to action, to speak truth to institutionalized racism whenever you encounter it, even it is personally risky.

Anti-racism is a struggle. A struggle for White people to learn about structural racism and White privilege; to understand that racism = prejudice + power. People of color might hate each other, or hate White people, but they don’t have the power that institutional backing gives. Anti-Racism is a struggle to move beyond the guilt and the attendant paralysis guilt causes, and be present: emotional, physically and spiritually as you move through this and help other White folks do the same. It means not relying on your allies of color to comfort you through this, reassure you that you are a good person, or take care of you emotionally.

Anti-racism is a lifetime commitment to action. To speak truth to power, to institutionalized racism wherever you encounter it, even if it is personally risky. To realize that you will make mistakes and that is OK, as long as you keep trying.

As climate activists, anti-racism is central to our work. The communities that are most vulnerable to climate change are communities of color, in both the global north and global south. Racism makes people of color disposable. We must have their backs, stand with them and stand witness. We must make sure the whole world is watching, as the coast guard dumps refugees into the sea, or immigrants are rounded up and jailed, or as Pacific Islanders begin to drown and seek refuge, as Native Americans continue to have their lands poisoned by fossil fuel extraction. As Bangladeshi have no place to go. As African Americans become refugees and not citizens of the country they built when a natural disaster hits.

We must make sure that the whole world is watching, and that we fight the dehumanizing discourse of racism.

Part of our community’s journey has been to confront the -isms (ageism, sexism, racism...), as uncomfortable as that may be. That said, we recognize that this a long and complex road to walk, which takes genuine acknowledgment of our personal and communal privilege -- a realization that can be very confronting as we come to accept the responsibility said privilege implies. Our commitment is to building an inclusive, inter-generational and diverse community, and we recognize that in order to do so there are some tough conversations to be had and important shifts to be made along the way.

Our challenge to you:  Invite your community to read and discuss these documents on anti-racism and white privilege.  Or, reach out to groups in your area that may offer trainings/workshops or community fishbowls on any of the “isms”.