I’m in Morocco waking up to tiny bits of news updates from the States. When I do have access to Wifi it’s barely enough to send an iMessage, let alone load full articles and videos. I’ve been in touch with a few friends; teachers and students, but this is the most disconnected from home I’ve ever felt.
I feel like I need to be home today.
It’s not because of the distance, or the prolonged time that I’ve been away.
I’m in the middle of my selfish, soul-searching, mid 20’s “year off” (along with all of the privilege that comes along with having had a job that allowed me the mobility and the opportunity to save enough money to afford it) and my home is falling apart. I feel a bit strange enjoying this adventure when I see how much my home is hurting. I know how much work there is to be done, and I don’t feel like I’m helping by being away. There are literally white nationalists walking the streets that I have called home, wearing rebel flags like capes with no heroes underneath, physically and verbally harassing people in the streets. They’re walking the streets where I can freely walk at anytime of day, wearing anything I choose, and never fear for my safety, OR fear that my presence could possibly make another individual uncomfortable. Many of my students and their families cannot do this. When you see people hurting, it is your responsibility to familiarize yourself with their pain, not to question the validity of it, and not to silently isolate yourself from it.
You can either hold onto your privilege and use it to keep walking down the street safely, or you can use it to amplify the voices of others.
White folks, this is not a time to be quiet, but it is also not a time to share your opinion. This is a time to listen to and share the experiences of the communities that are hurting.
If you are struggling to understand oppression, please do not let your ignorance turn into ugliness.
but be humble.