Will we fight for our youth?

Dear white adults (like me),
 
Today at Drake University fliers appeared in random places on campus that said “It’s OK to be white.” This was not an isolated incident. Such signs have appeared on many campuses in recent weeks; this is an organized campaign.
 
Here’s what we need to know. White nationalists are eager and ready to recruit our young people. They are coming for them. And, the hard reality is this. White youth who have been taught to “value diversity” but who have not been well-supported by adults in their lives (white parents, teachers and clergy especially) to find an antiracist position and ground to stand on, as white people? Well, these youth are ripe for the picking. Ripe for the picking.
 
We need to fight for them. I mean it. We need to call them in and resource them. We need to support them in learning that we can ask ourselves “what kind of white person do I want to be?” We need to journey with them as they discover that when we ask that question in earnest we experience life-giving, flourishing possibilities for who we could be as people.
 
Let me be clear. Doing this isn’t just about investing in white youth. It’s a critical move to invest in the lives of ALL of our youth.
 
On top of that? Doing this means we’re learning, dialoguing and taking action in our adult white lives too.
 
It means deciding to prioritize creating all kinds of honest spaces for dialogue about and struggle with what our white histories are, who we have mostly been, AND, and, and, and….who we could be if only we have the will and want something more whole for today and for the future.
 
This is our work to do. And we can do it if we decide it’s important. We owe it to the generation who is coming next to invite and hold this conversation. Over and over again. Please.
 
Jen
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