Placing our feet in another’s shoes asks us to imagine life from their perspective. Perhaps you might have heard the phrase or offered it to another in moments of empathy.
Imagining a world while wearing a differing color of skin, shaped by a lifetime of self-conceptions and prejudices, becomes more incomprehensible.
Karem Abudul-Jabbar named by whiteness in his op-ed in the Los Angeles Times.
I have much to learn from the voices of people whose skin color and origin differ from mine and much to learn from you, members and friends of Kenilworth Union Church.
In the coming weeks members of Senior Staff will present blog posts with recommendations of books, articles, podcasts, movies, and music to explore racial justice, injustices, and the ways we have hurt one another and can heal together.
Here is my short list of books:
What about a book you already have on your shelf? Just open Amos or Isaiah or any of the prophets in your Bible. You will encounter a writer of color speaking to people of all colors throughout the ages. Our prejudices are not unique to this age and our call as a people of faith remains the same—love God and love our neighbor.
As I write this my black Lab, Penny, sleeps uncharacteristically in my cramped office in Lincoln Park. It is a small space for her large frame. Firecrackers, thunder, or the Blue Angels’ flyovers never faze her and yet after four days of the “L” silenced and the constant sirens and helicopters from mid-afternoon into the evening, she is anxious. All her favorite shops along Armitage remain not just closed, without treats; they are boarded over. It reminds me of Florida preparing for a hurricane. The storm will not pass without our removing the barriers between us. George Floyd died at the knee of racism and we can stop this only if we begin now.