|I’ve been watching the world change. |
It’s been inspiring to see people standing up stronger against racism and not backing down so that we can reach real, systemic change.
I’ve been watching the Black Lives Matter demonstrations— the way I’ve watched it all happen before. Feeling like “being a good person”, “having good intentions” and a diverse team meant that I wasn’t part of the problem and I could cheer from the sidelines.
I won’t watch anymore. It’s time to actively seek ways to join the fight, and there are many. Racism is a problem that is deeply rooted in the very system that is supposed to give us ALL opportunity and safety. These protests have shown me that it’s no longer enough to have good intentions and believe ourselves to be “good”. What if we joined hands to join their fight (our fight)- a fight that our Black brothers and sisters are tired of fighting on their own.
Until now, Creative Edge Travel hasn’t vocally addressed our stance against racism. Like many of us, I’ve been quietly listening to the voices rising to the surface and sitting with their truths. I didn’t want to respond in a way that felt “trendy”. I waited until my message felt genuine.
So here it is.
Black people experience pain, fear, struggle, and loss everyday that I will never know. It’s a systemic sickness that takes more than good intentions to heal. I haven’t done enough to be a true ally in the past, and I’m sorry. This movement is opening my eyes and imploring me to take a more active stance. Here’s what I’m doing to start:
- Intentionally bringing more Black voices to our content, starting with this Coffee Chat on FB Live with Janelle @journeysandjetlag. Join us as she shares her experience traveling the world as a Black woman and her message for the travel industry which notoriously lacks diversity.
- Vowing to never again let my own insecurities or discomfort keep me from speaking out when I hear racist remarks. (I put this one into practice last week when I heard unfathomable words from a white supremacist teenager, ugh. Another story for another day.)
- Taking a course on systemic racism and how to be an ally for Black women. (#DoTheWork by Rachel Elizabeth Cargle. Subscribe here to sign up.)
- Reading books like White Fragility and Stamped from the Beginning so that I can hold informed conversations with people and speak loudly with the knowledge to back me up.
- Intentionally adding Black voices to my podcast consumption and social media feeds to ensure that the world around me doesn’t just consist of people who look like me. (I’m now listening to CodeSwitch, 1619 (New York Times), Side Hustle Pro, and others created by Black leaders. New follows include @ava, @Rachel.cargle, @michellesaahene, @keedronbryant, @cleowade, @mspackyetti, @candaceabroad, @zoidham, and @verydelphine).
- Voting for leaders that promise change against systemic racism.
- Signing petitions and letting my Reps know how I want them to vote on bills. (IssueVoter makes this suuuper easy, check it out! Change.org/petitions also offers an easy way to sign petitions.)
- Donating to Black Voters Matter Fund and Atlanta Solidarity Fund. (This article and this one list many others that are making change and need your support.)
|This is just a start. I’m learning. You may not feel like you’ll have an impact, but collective voices create change. Will you join me in taking action against racism? Start with the above and these 75 Things White People Can Do for Racial Justice.|
Thanks for listening,
Sierra Busch, Founder of Creative Edge Travel