05 December 2014

I have nothing to say

With the recent attention being given to the abhorrently violent institutional racism in this country, so many people seem to have so many things to say. My Facebook feed has been full of lament (and some blaming and defensiveness). My Twitter feed is absolutely flooded with one-sentence opinions and judgments. Even people on Instagram are posting pictures of text reading "Black Lives Matter" "I Can't Breathe" and "We Can't Breathe."

And I have nothing to say.

This is not to say I don't think this racism affects me or that these problems are not mine. But rather I do not think that my voice is relevant. We do not need more white people sharing their thoughts and ideas about racism. We need more white people to shut up and listen to what people of color are trying to tell us.

So I have nothing to say.

That does not mean I am not filled with rage, sadness and despair. Nor does it mean I don't want to scream and fume and write diatribes about injustice. But in this I am perpetrator and not a victim, so I must be quiet and listen. I must faithfully follow the lead of my brothers and sisters of color and heed any advice they offer me.

I have nothing to say.

O Lord, how long shall I cry for help,
and you will not listen?
Or cry to you “Violence!”
and you will not save?
Why do you make me see wrongdoing
and look at trouble?
Destruction and violence are before me;
strife and contention arise.
So the law becomes slack
and justice never prevails.
The wicked surround the righteous—
therefore judgment comes forth perverted.
Look at the nations, and see!
Be astonished! Be astounded!
For a work is being done in your days
that you would not believe if you were told.
~Habakkuk 1:2-5