*If you don’t like something that I have shared post-election OR if you are just wondering why I am spending so much time and energy speaking about it, this may help…
I speak because I can.
We live in a country where freedom of expression is a constitutionally protected right.
It doesn’t get any more foundational than that.
I could end my post here, but I’m going to share more. (Why? Because I can!)
I speak because I have a perspective.
I’m a woman with ideas, experience, and an education.
It doesn’t get any more thoughtful than that.
I speak because I am in a position of privilege.
My whiteness affords me opportunities and access that I consider to be my personal responsibility to use for good.
It doesn’t get any more self-aware than that.
I speak because other white people may listen to me.
Some white people will not hear social justice perspectives from people that seem different than them, but if it is coming from someone who seems similar…there is a possibility of progress.
It doesn’t get any more strategic than that.
I speak because sometimes others are afraid to speak (people of color, LGBTQ folks, women, and allies.)
My speaking encourages them, inspires them, and validates them. I know that because they tell me.
It doesn’t get any more impactful than that.
I speak because I am white, and I don’t want any confusion about what I stand for.
I do not stand for white supremacy. I stand for social justice.
I don’t want to be considered or seen as silent, complacent, compliant, or unmoved.
I have too many real relationships with too many people of color, LGBTQ folks, women, and other allies. I want people to know who I am and what I am about.
It doesn’t get any more transparent than that.
I speak because I believe acknowledging hatred matters.
My words that identify race or racism are not impolite or offensive. (In fact, typically people of privilege that ascribe to some form of colorblindness are more likely to see simple statements about race and/or racism to be unnecessary.)
It doesn’t get any more truthful than that.
I speak because I have spoken before and I will speak again.
Before this election, I spoke out and acted against hatred. And I will continue to do so.
It doesn’t get any more long-term than that.
I speak because I regret not doing even more before the election.
I predominantly tried to share my perspective with other white Christians in one-on-one conversation. But apparently that wasn’t enough. Now that we are post-election, I feel a greater call to say even more.
It doesn’t get any more urgent than that.
I speak because I believe the office of the presidency matters.
I’m not talking about what sauces were or were not available to me when I pulled up to the fast food drive-thru. I’m talking about the “leader of the free world” – the most powerful person in political office in the United States.
It doesn’t get any more important than that.
I speak because I want to do more than “preach to the choir.”
I could go back into my little corner of liberals who believe more-or-less the same as me. But who does that help? That keeps us all just as out-of-touch about what “the other side” thinks and believes. I have to speak out if I hope to offer clarity, share perspective, and be a part of someone’s cognitive dissonance experience that leads to real change.
It doesn’t get any more influential than that.
I speak because I am a-okay if someone disagrees with me and then doesn’t want to do business with me.
If you are okay with racism, homophobia, sexism, and other forms of hatred…I don’t want to do business with you either.
It doesn’t get any more fiscally responsible than that.
I speak because I want to process my own thoughts and feelings.
What has happened is real, it hits home, and it matters to me and to people I care about. And I’ve got a lot to figure out.
It doesn’t get any more ‘real-time’ than that.
I speak because I want to sleep at night.
At the end of the day, I need to know that I’ve done my part – and then some.
It doesn’t get any more personal than that.
*NEW! “I Speak” inspirational 8.5×11 mini-poster
Because you could use a reminder that you have something important to say!
Click now to download, print, and post wherever you want to be inspired: www.jessicajourney.com/ispeak