Wednesday, May 23, 2007

food for thought

I have been so busy lately that I haven't had much time to write, but I did want to post some food for thought. The questions below are actually transcribed from a voice recording by Liam McGrath, who posed these questions on Addicted to Race, a podcast about America's obsession with race, to which I listen regularly.

Liam's mission was to encourage those of us thinking, writing, and doing anti-racist activism to define for ourselves and the sake of the movement why we are doing this work. One of the points he made was that it is important to be clear about our intentions in order to be able to "arrive at common ground in pursuit of common goals" with the overarching goal being working together to affect change on a large scale. I asked Liam for permission to post the questions he posed because I think they are really excellent and needed.

Liam asks:

Why are we interested in race in America?

Is it to:
- dismantle white supremacy?
- fight for economic justice?
- fight for social justice?
- change laws?
- change minds?
- teach?
- protect our kids?
- protect ourselves?
- make friends?
- get ahead at work?
- learn about people & cultures?
- lambast other people?
- assuage our guilt?
- unleash our anger?
- because we made a choice to be involved?
- because we have no choice but to be involved?
- make self a better person?
- justify self?
- so other people will treat other people better?
- so people around us will treat others better?
- so people around us will treat us better?
- to be entertained?
- to be prepared for talk around the water cooler?
- be better understood and not judged by the body we're wrapped in?
- better understand the people we judge by the body they're wrapped in?
- because we don't want to offend?
- because we've been offended?
- because we should all just get along?
- because we will never get along?
- because we're insecure?
- because we're curious?

Liam says: "Why are we part of this multitude of discussions?" and "Now that we are here? Where are we trying to go?"

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