Anti-racism activity in your local churches?

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Carolla

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Was on a regional meeting call last night & one question was about what's going on locally in terms of anti-racism activities. It seems extremely uneven - some churches doing nothing - not even mentioning the topic; others preaching regularly and repeatedly on the issue; some hosting zoom discussions & listening sessions. UCCan is doing some work at the national office level. So I just wanted to ask - what's happening in your neighbourhood? Have you participated? What's the mood?

And here's an interesting article - The Canadian Church Must Break Ties with White Supremacy - your thoughts?
 
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Not that I’ve heard. I can’t imagine I’d find a church anywhere in this city that wasn’t colonial in attitude; or any other group here for that matter. This place is terribly colonial/ paternalistic, unfortunately. I really noticed it, even more so, after moving back from a bigger city.

I tried to have a similar, though not church related, discussion about how this town feels too white and colonial - and snooty, resistant to change - but one of my parents felt like I was insulting him and his friends (I guess, in a way I was but not to hurt feelings). This is one place where the locals insist you adapt to them, they will not adapt to you (except maybe to bylaws).
 
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Luce NDs

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How can one develop equity with the shades and shadows without breaking out of the pure white state of whitewashing?

In a flash ...
 

Carolla

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Kimmio - he has several videos on his facebook page - that's where I copied it from. He may also have a youtube channel , not sure but you could look.
 
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Kimmio - he has several videos on his facebook page - that's where I copied it from. He may also have a youtube channel , not sure but you could look.
I found it. Thanks!

I sent it to a young black woman I know. She's the only black person I know here in town. She's understandably interested in the anti-racism movement going on. I asked her what she thinks, if she thinks what he's saying is good advice. (One thought I had is here's an older white male talking about what black people want from white people - and if he's the best teacher. Doesn't that represent part of the systemic problem? I didn't say that but I did ask who are some teachers she thought I could learn more from.) She hasn't responded yet.
 

jimkenney12

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He is not teaching Black people. He is teaching white people, providing them with tools they need to be able to hear people of colour.
 

Mendalla

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The UU fellowship here had the benefit of gaining a Black American human rights activist (originally from Philadelphia) as a member during my time there. I think he still is involved there. He had been involved in civil rights in the US going back to MLK, Jr.'s time and did some good educational work with both adults and children.

At the time I started, they also had a relationship with an indigenous broadcaster and activist but that seemed to fade later. He and his wife led a couple services and spoke on some other occasions. Not sure why that relationship didn't carry on.

The First Principle necessitates UU'ism taking strong stands on racism, etc., but I know even the UUA had a big blowup during the first round of BLM even though UUs were out actively supporting that movement. The fact is, UU'ism tends to be a white, middle-class faith, much like a lot of mainstream Christianity, and that sometimes blinds us to racial issues even if our intentions are good.
 

Carolla

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He is not teaching Black people. He is teaching white people, providing them with tools they need to be able to hear people of colour.
Yes - this. There are SO many white folks who deny any part in racism and THAT is a huge part of the continuance of systemic issues. Anti-racist work is ours to do, as WHITE people. It is not the work of BIPOC people to instruct us - they've been offering that for decades - maybe centuries - and we white folks dismiss it. They are exhausted - as many will tell you.

Are there other teachers - sure - many and the internet affords us a huge luxury of tapping into the wealth of all that. Kimmio - Why do you wait for the one black person you know to give you suggestions? It could be YOUR work as a white person to search out sources and educate yourself.
 

Luce NDs

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Binary ... is a two way thing ... as in nature; put it out and it'll come back as reaction! Only beyond nature can altar be conceived as on way salvation of winners ... accept it ... tis all in your hedonism ... overhead or as once stated ... AD! AD M ... and Eve fell for it as a demonstration of blinding emotional output ... there AD M lost it ...

Thus modern folk songs like "Am I Losing Ewe'! It was Reeve 'd ... or roven ... by the rover ... Eire I am!

Some people believe in their solo state ... singular standing! No respect for how they got there ... scrooged ... or screw-edged ... evidence of near death and an instant of being beyond yourself ... or the alternate ...

There are powers that would like to control these exchanges as well! Bedrooms are said to be nothing of the national affair ... but guess what is gossiped about most ... could it be the entertainment or a muse in factor? Thus ode things are declared ...
 
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Yes - this. There are SO many white folks who deny any part in racism and THAT is a huge part of the continuance of systemic issues. Anti-racist work is ours to do, as WHITE people. It is not the work of BIPOC people to instruct us - they've been offering that for decades - maybe centuries - and we white folks dismiss it. They are exhausted - as many will tell you.

Are there other teachers - sure - many and the internet affords us a huge luxury of tapping into the wealth of all that. Kimmio - Why do you wait for the one black person you know to give you suggestions? It could be YOUR work as a white person to search out sources and educate yourself.
I disagree. Have you heard the expression, “Nothing about us without us”? I understand that they’ve been trying to tell us for decades, centuries. And I have read some work by scholars like Kim Crenshaw on intersectionality, and listened to Cornell West, and read some of MLK’s writing, and I did some study of systemic racism and colonialism at school. I have been interested and in awe of the creative work of black artists - especially musicians relaying deep seated feelings about continued oppression and marginalization, like Gil Scott Heron. Newer ones would be Daniel Glover. He’s a genius. Comedians who tell painful truths in funny ways like Dave Chappell - without letting my subconscious colonial/ Victorian white person sensibilities get offended - or maybe actually letting them get offended and accepting that, because we need to be able to take the heat, and the truth even if it is not polite. The oppressed don’t owe the oppressive society politeness. I have been interested in learning about the Black Power movement of the 60s and 70s, and people like Angela Davis - not from the perspective of it having been a criminal enterprise, or a threat, but how the black community organized across the US - it started as an effort by black people to take care of their own communities - and though it was a rough period, especially when it was cracked down on by the US government - things got violent - but ultimately it was a catalyst for change, for some progress. Just not enough. And it fell apart with the dawn of the neoliberal capitalist era in the 80s. This is a new generation/ iteration of the last black power movement. This is not new to me. However...If we’re talking about rooting out colonialism, white supremacy and patriarchy - it feels odd to be listening to an older white yuppy British guy instruct other white people on what black people want. If I want to have a dialogue, a conversation with real people who are oppressed about how they feel - they are the experts on their experience, so why wouldn’t I ask someone I know - a young woman for whom this movement is immediately important to - instead of listening to Paul Scanlon? He’s not necessarily wrong, it’s just misplaced for him to be telling white people what black people want us to hear. If we are allies we need to listen to black people themselves talk about their experience, now, today.

It’s like non disabled people speaking with authority on the experience of ableism without representation from the disability community. It feels arrogant at times, even if it’s well meaning. Or men speaking for women about women’s rights through men’s eyes. Or straight people telling straight people what lgbtq people need. If Scanlon was quoting and citing the work of black activists that would be different.
 
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Waterfall

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He’s not necessarily wrong, it’s just misplaced for him to be telling white people what black people want us to hear. If we are allies we need to listen to black people themselves talk about their experience, now, today.

It’s like non disabled people speaking with authority on the experience of ableism without representation from the disability community. It feels arrogant at times, even if it’s well meaning. Or men speaking for women. Or straight people telling straight people what lgbtq people need. If Scanlon was quoting and citing the work of black activists that would be different.
This.
 

Mendalla

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The problem is that some white people don't "hear" black or brown or whatever people and won't get the message if it doesn't come from another white person. And I'm not talking hardcore racists. There's no point in even talking to them. They won't get the message anyhow until you hit them in the face with it. Just ordinary, subconciously racist people who don't thing of themselves as racist but also clearly don't value or get the voices of non-white people.

Obviously, the white people giving the message need to be working closely with/learning from the other races to ensure they are giving the right message but if having a white person deliver the message is what gets the message across, then that's how it needs to be done. And I would say the same for LGBTQ+. If a straight ally delivering the message gets it across effectively, then have a straight ally deliver the message.

All that said, as I pointed out, those white/straight allies need to understand the message themselves and work with appropriate community members in formulating it.
 
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I disagree. Have you heard the expression, “Nothing about us without us”? I understand that they’ve been trying to tell us for decades, centuries. And I have read some work by scholars like Kim Crenshaw on intersectionality, and listened to Cornell West, and read some of MLK’s writing, and I did some study of systemic racism and colonialism at school. I have been interested and in awe of the creative work of black artists - especially musicians relaying deep seated feelings about continued oppression and marginalization, like Gil Scott Heron. Newer ones would be Daniel Glover. He’s a genius. Comedians who tell painful truths in funny ways like Dave Chappell - without letting my subconscious colonial/ Victorian white person sensibilities get offended - or maybe actually letting them get offended and accepting that, because we need to be able to take the heat, and the truth even if it is not polite. The oppressed don’t owe the oppressive society politeness. I have been interested in learning about the Black Power movement of the 60s and 70s, and people like Angela Davis - not from the perspective of it having been a criminal enterprise, or a threat, but how the black community organized across the US - it started as an effort by black people to take care of their own communities - and though it was a rough period, especially when it was cracked down on by the US government - things got violent - but ultimately it was a catalyst for change, for some progress. Just not enough. And it fell apart with the dawn of the neoliberal capitalist era in the 80s. This is a new generation/ iteration of the last black power movement. This is not new to me. However...If we’re talking about rooting out colonialism, white supremacy and patriarchy - it feels odd to be listening to an older white yuppy British guy instruct other white people on what black people want. If I want to have a dialogue, a conversation with real people who are oppressed about how they feel - they are the experts on their experience, so why wouldn’t I ask someone I know - a young woman for whom this movement is immediately important to - instead of listening to Paul Scanlon? He’s not necessarily wrong, it’s just misplaced for him to be telling white people what black people want us to hear. If we are allies we need to listen to black people themselves talk about their experience, now, today.

It’s like non disabled people speaking with authority on the experience of ableism without representation from the disability community. It feels arrogant at times, even if it’s well meaning. Or men speaking for women about women’s rights through men’s eyes. Or straight people telling straight people what lgbtq people need. If Scanlon was quoting and citing the work of black activists that would be different.
*Donald Glover.


Danny Glover is a great actor but that’s not who I meant.
 
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The problem is that some white people don't "hear" black or brown or whatever people and won't get the message if it doesn't come from another white person. And I'm not talking hardcore racists. There's no point in even talking to them. They won't get the message anyhow until you hit them in the face with it. Just ordinary, subconciously racist people who don't thing of themselves as racist but also clearly don't value or get the voices of non-white people.

Obviously, the white people giving the message need to be working closely with/learning from the other races to ensure they are giving the right message but if having a white person deliver the message is what gets the message across, then that's how it needs to be done. And I would say the same for LGBTQ+. If a straight ally delivering the message gets it across effectively, then have a straight ally deliver the message.

All that said, as I pointed out, those white/straight allies need to understand the message themselves and work with appropriate community members in formulating it.
If they actually want to learn, they’ll listen to black peoples’ experience and expertise - the tough, painful stories, unfiltered through a white lens. If they don’t, like you said, it doesn’t matter what Paul Scanlon says either - privileged white people will intently pretend to care (probably especially mainstream church folks, unfortunately). It’s not like he’s lived it...so it reeks a bit of white privilege to have him say it to white people, and for white people have to hear it from another white person.
 
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Waterfall

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The problem is that some white people don't "hear" black or brown or whatever people and won't get the message if it doesn't come from another white person. And I'm not talking hardcore racists. There's no point in even talking to them. They won't get the message anyhow until you hit them in the face with it. Just ordinary, subconciously racist people who don't thing of themselves as racist but also clearly don't value or get the voices of non-white people.
First of all WOW, really?!!!
Canadian mainline churches are composed of mostly white people that really don't have a clue....I'll include myself and my church so there's no doubt in my mind the narrative will change to our own agenda if we don't stop talking and listen.
 
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The problem is that some white people don't "hear" black or brown or whatever people and won't get the message if it doesn't come from another white person. And I'm not talking hardcore racists. There's no point in even talking to them. They won't get the message anyhow until you hit them in the face with it. Just ordinary, subconciously racist people who don't thing of themselves as racist but also clearly don't value or get the voices of non-white people.

...then that's how it needs to be done.
That's still white supremacy, though. White supremacy is an attitude of we know best. It's not just extreme white supremacist groups like the KKK.
 

Luce NDs

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What can determined people deny? Under total freedom ... everything but nothing ... there is no evidence of nothing ... why love is so detrimental ... all that is left after failed love is the alternate emotion!

Don't you hate Ide? So it goes ...
 
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