NOTE: In honor of Ahmaud Arbery, I’m surrendering my blog today to someone who understands the suffering of Black Americans better than I ever could. Please listen to what my friend, and brother in Christ, Kyle Butler has to teach us about Racism in America today.
RACISM: My Answer To It by Kyle Butler
Racism, what do we know?
Well on the surface, we know it’s ugly. It is painful. It is dehumanizing. It is deadly. It is restrictive. It is harmful. It is misleading. It is stereotypical. It is bold. It is subtle. It is divisive. It is wrong. It hurts. It cripples. It separates. It is ignorant. It is learned. It is distracting. It is part of humanities past. It is in our present, but will it be our future?
Well, that is up to us. It’s up to all of us. No matter what we’ve done in the past. No matter how it has or has not affected you and me. Only you and I together, can change the trajectory of this.
How? Well the answer is as simple as the very thing we all understand on some level and that is love. Love is the one common thread or essence we all have in common. I know on one level we have heard that we all bleed the same color. Well as much as that is true, apparently, seeing the blood of our brothers and sisters of all nationalities running through every street of every segment of history because of some type of hatred isn’t enough and hasn’t worked. Blood is not the answer.
We have tried legislation. While on the surface it seems to have helped, but yet there are still laws and legal practices which do not support complete equality. We have tried to protest it. Yes, we have seen some good come out of it, but has it been enough? We have tried to fight hate and anger with more hate and anger, but all that does is end up in more division and bloodshed. We have cried together, yes, that has helped too, but tears fade away. We have spoken up and we have spoken out. However, none of these methods although somewhat helpful, has brought the overall desired effects we all really want. Believe me, no one really wants to hate. Hate is unactual to our core. No one really wants to kill. Killing is unnatural to our core. No one really wants “separate but equal” Separation is unnatural to our core.
So, we are back at love. Love, the starting place. Love, every single human being starting place. Love at our core sees only me and it sees only you. Not as a man, or a woman. Not as a boy or a girl. Not as a color. Not as a lifestyle. Not as a sexuality. Not as a label of any kind. Love is labeless.
When “love” is aggressively attached to labels, it can become very easy to dislike and even hate, the opposite of whatever the label is of that love. It is then no longer love. It becomes wicked and twisted. It believes through this distorted belief, that it must be favored or protected. It must be exulted above all others. It believes it is superior and all others that don’t fit within the category of that label are inferior and are unworthy of decency.
We’ve played this game long enough. No one has really won, and no one ever really will. I know that seems inaccurate. I know racism has benefited some and has done great harm to others. That perception has created a mindset of winners and losers, victors and victims. But in all actuality, it has torn down the very essence of the human spirit, therefore, in some ways, we are all at a loss.
Many great orators throughout history, have said the very same thing. I join my voice in with theirs and with the voice of everyone who believes in the power of love and the power of oneness. If I can help you see the true essence of who you really are, if you can help someone else see the essence of who they really are, we can – together completely eliminate the small element of racism that still runs through the ideology of a small portion of humanity.
I want to encourage you, don’t give up on love. Let love continue. Let love heal. Let love educate. Let love lead. Let love speak. Let love – love, and the rest will take care of itself.
Keith Giles is an author, blogger, podcaster and follower of Jesus who is very tired of watching black people get killed for no reason. He’s ready to try love. Are you?