The unjust deaths of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and countless other people of color has awoken many of us to the fact that the struggle for racial justice continues in our country. While our society has made progress, this summer has allowed us to see just how much more work we have to do.
This 21-day challenge is designed to help us begin to do that work, to open our eyes to the daily lived experience of our non-white neighbors, and to help us begin to help us know where to begin as we do God’s work of creating a more just society.
The Adult Discipleship committee invites you to join us in taking on this 21-day race equity challenge. Throughout these three weeks, we will hear voices we might not otherwise hear and see people we might not normally see. It may be uncomfortable or sound foreign to us, but our firm hope is that through this, God’s Spirit will be at work within us.
Explaining White Privilege to a Broke White Person, Gina Crosley-Corcoran, raised “the kind of poor that people don’t want to believe still exists in this country,” explores where race and class do and don’t intersect and how she’s come to understand her own white privilege.
How White People Got Made, by Quinn Norton, exploring where the term “white people” comes from and which ethnic groups have and have not been able to become “white” through US history.
White Fragility, Groundbreaking 2011 article by Robin DiAngelo, which led to a 2018 book of the same title, exploring why it can be so hard for white people to talk about race, and how the resulting silence and defensiveness functions to hold racial dynamics and racial oppression in place.
Belhar Confession – A Confession of our Denomination, the PC(USA), that comes from the South African Church during the time of Apartheid.
1619 Podcast: Podcast exploring the history of slavery in the United States.
Code Switch, hosted by journalists Gene Demby and Shereen Marisol Meraji, both people of color, this podcast is curated by a team of NPC journalists of color who navigate the complexities of race, both professionally and personally, daily. Episodes focus on a wide range of issues overlapping race, ethnicity,and culture. (any episode – times vary)
Breakdances with Wolves Podcast, hosted by Gyasi Ross, Wesley (“Snipes Type”) Roach, and Minty LongEarth, “a few Natives with opinions and a platform.” Episodes report on current events through an indigenous perspective. (any episode – one-ish hour each)
Black Like Me, host Dr. Alex Gee “invites you to experience the world through the perspective of one Black man, one conversation, one story, or even one rant at a time.” (any episode – times vary)
13th, Netflix documentary by Ava DuVernay about the connection between US Slavery and the present day mass incarceration system. (1 hour 40 minutes)
Slavery by Another name, 90 minutes PBS documentary challenges the idea that slavery ended with the emancipation proclamation. (90 minutes)
Unnatural Causes, Seven part documentary by California Newsreel that explores the impact of racism on health and US healthcare. (4 hours total, episodes have variable lengths)
Birth of a White Nation, Keynote speech by legal scholar Jacqueline Battalora, offers a blow-by-blow description of the moment the idea of, and word for, “white” people entered U.S. legal code. (36 minutes)
Race: The Power of an Illusion, Three-part, three-hour film by California Newsreel exploring the biology of skin color, the concept of assimilation, and the history of institutional racism. (three 1 hour episodes)
Once people start to learn about white privilege and America’s systems of oppression through history, they often ask, “Why didn’t I see this sooner?” It’s easy to overlook what we’re not looking for. Once you understand the phenomenon of selective noticing, take yourself on a noticing adventure.
2) Then…go out in the world and change up what you notice. Here’s some of what you might look for:
Who is and is not represented in ads?
What are the last five books you read? What is the racial mix of the authors?
What is the racial mix of the main characters in your favorite TV shows? Movies?
Who is filling what kinds of jobs/social roles in your world? (e.g. Who’s the store manager and who’s stocking the shelves? Who’s waiting on tables and who’s busing the food?) Can you correlate any of this to racial identity?
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