If you have come here to help me, you are wasting your time; but if your liberation is bound to mine, please take my hand and we will work together. Aboriginal saying(order of service at First Parish, Northboro)
I didn't really want to go to church yesterday. It was a lay led sermon on confronting one's own racism. Big bummer on a beautiful Sunday morning...plus, I have had the confronting racism course at Smith College, thank you very much. In fact, we got so outraged at the institutional racism we found there, we did a sit-in to change the format of the course. Here is one of the things I remember from one lecture by the then Dean of Boston University School of Social Work: Ask yourself this question, how many African-Americans would attend your funeral?
The answer then was one...the answer now is just a handful. Racism in this country is hard to talk about, hard to tackle. If you chose to live in a community that is not integrated, you will continue to have friends that look a lot like you do. I tried to talk one of my African-American friends to moving out to my white community. She responded with "I don't think I want my kids to be stared out every time they walk out of my house." She was right.
I needed the sermon, I needed the reminder and one course, fifteen years ago isn't enough. We are bound to Haiti, and to Pakistan, and to every sentient being.
And the reason to have kids? Two things: Emma was the reason I went to church yesterday and heard what I needed to hear and she gave me the greatest artwork, ever.