After spending hours watching the news the last several months I couldn’t help but notice all the allies coming out the wood work. Part of me was grateful, then the other part was like, wait a minute, Are you really an ally because I’ve seen some of ya’ll acting a straight up no ally no way no how fool in real life before. So I journaled a “Dear Allies” letter. Here my sincere letter to all the allies and potential allies out there

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Dear Allies

I see you. You’re on the front lines. You’re walking the walk. You’re talking the talk. You appear to be fighting the fight. You’re turning up en masse at protests and your letting your voices be heard. You’re showing tangible support. You’re actions are noted and appreciated. I want to say thank you. Know that you’re needed. Your time and actions have not been spent or made in vain. You’re appreciated.

However, it’s not enough.

We need you to not just show up to protest but to change your behavior and encourage changes in behavior of others in everyday life. Are you and others in your circle acting in support of and showing love to Blacks and other people of color (poc) on your job? Are you being kind and welcoming to your Black/ POC neighbors or acting a straight up fool –  a stalking, harassing, hacking, illegitimate no good jealous lying racist insecure disrespectful unwelcoming flighting fool? Are you being good hearted to people of color and Blacks throughout the day? Or are you unknowingly adding to the problem through your day in and day out behavior?

Please truly examine your heart and reflect on any past actions that may have contributed to the problems and unjust, racist, status quo

Don’t just look at the systemic issues but also examine the role that you may have directly or indirectly played in contributing to the problem.

Slowly, very slowly but surely
Think of every Black person you may have ostracized
Think of every Black person you may have minimized
Think of every Black person you may have unjustly scrutinized
Think of every Black person you may have polarized
Think of every Black person you may have trivialized
Think of every Black person you may have marginalized
Think of every Black person you may have slandered
Think of every Black person you may have psychoanalyzed
Think of every Black person you may have lied on
Think of every Black person you may have tried to get fired
Think of every Black person you may have tried to get evicted
Think of every Black person you may have shamed
Think of every Black person you may have scandalized
Think of every Black person you may have sensualized
Think of every Black person you may have hyper sexualized
Think of every Black person you may have volatilized
Think of every Black person you may have stigmatized
Think of every Black person you may have unjustly criticized
Think of every Black person you may have scrutinized
Think of every Black person you may have dramatized
Think of every Black person you may have satirized
Think of every Black person you may have penalized
Think of every Black person you may have agonized
Think of every Black person you may have colonialized
Think of every Black person you may have victimized then villainized
Think of every Black person you may have mischaracterized
Think of every Black person you may have departmentalized
Think of every Black person you may have sensationalized
Think of every Black person you may have underemphasized
Think of every Black person you may have despiritualized
Think of every Black person you may have over homogenized
Think of every Black person you may have melodramatized
Think of every Black person you may have fractionalized
Think of every Black person you may have subjectuirized
Think of every Black person you may have under utilized
Think of every Black person you may have criminalized
Think of every Black person you may have otherwise wronged

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Think of every racist joke you may have laughed at or told,
Think of every stereotype you may have acted on or played into,
Think of every door you may have slammed shut,
Think of every impolite conversation that you sat in on that you knew was full of hate, ignorance, & animosity
Think of every conversation that you sat in on that your gut told you could’ve been a teachable moment towards love and tolerance of Black people that you just let slide
Think of every foul comment heard that you have nodded in agreement to

Think of every time you’ve hurt someone’s reputation
Think of every time you’ve joined mob like bullying and harassing behavior
Think of every time you’ve damaged another’s career
Think of every time you’ve played inspector gadget
Think of every time you’ve taken food of another’s table
Think of every time you’ve gone out of your way to ‘expose’ another
Think of every time you’ve gone on a slander campaign or other campaign of destruction
Think of every time you have attempted to halt another’s progress
Think of every time you deliberately spread lies and rumors
Think of every time you created false reports
Think of every time you created or engaged with fake social media accounts
Think of every time that you excluded
Think of every time that you manipulated
Think of every time that you otherwise took unfair advantage of

Think of every time that you abused your privilege

Think of every time that you have acted as “Karen”

Think of every time that you could have been a hashtag #CentralParkJoggerAmyCooper #BBQBecky #HarassingNoBusinessHavingLisaAlexander #PermitPatty #CornerstoreCaroline #PoolPatrolPaula #ShelterSuzies #YoName

Take time, really think, write them down, make a list, reflect,….

Do you have a list?

If not, take a few more minutes and really think about it. Once you have a list then realize

Now you know what not to do again. So don’t do it again.

If you spent all that time thinking and couldn’t come up with a single thing, great. Ask three colleagues or friends of color to confirm your self analysis. If they all give you an all clear you may be a true ally already. If not, have them tell you where you need to improve or spend more time committing to self analysis.

God loves you and forgives you and doesn’t hold your past against you. As such, neither will I and neither should others. So, let’s all work together to make lasting change.

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