What Can White Allies Do?
So often, white allies ask me, “What can I do? What can I do?” I get it. They are overwhelmed. They want to do something but don’t know where to begin. I get it.
But sometimes, I just want to scream, “I. Don’t. Know.” I don’t know, dammit, because really, sometimes, I just don’t have a clue. I wake up some mornings and I read or hear a story that gives me hope. A story where a crime was interrupted by some kindhearted stranger or some child steps up and stops a bullying situation. Those stories make me believe in humanity. Those stories make me feel like maybe, just maybe we can figure out this thing called Life.
But then there are other mornings when I wake up and I think, “We are screwed. We are so screwed.” Sadly, I’ve been feeling that last emotion more and more. More and more, I find myself focusing on the names and the faces of those cut down by the bullets and the hands of those who were hired to serve and protect and I wonder, where is the love? Where is the kindness? Where is the humanity? I think about Michael Brown. Eric Garner. Kajieme Powell. Rumain Brisbon. Akai Gurley. John Crawford. Yvette Smith. Miriam Carey. Johnathan Ferrell. Rekia Boyd. Shereese Francis. Aiyana Jones. Sandra Bland. Tamir Rice. And the names go on and on and on and on and on and…On. I ask myself, what can white allies do to help right this ship? What can they do to help stop this madness?
I grapple between wanting to say, “Figure it out yourself,” to wanting to have something concrete to offer up. So, below are just a few suggestions that you can do if you are feeling helpless like so many of us: