Race 2012 – How Can We Get Along if We Don’t Talk?

Created by Totsy Mae for the Race 2012 Blogging Project.

Have you been following the Race 2012 Blogging Project? Well, let me tell you, there’s a conversation going on in those posts. A conversation that has been both eye opening and revealing. Candid and personal. I have been amazed by some of the discussion that has come out of this project.  Kudos to all the bloggers who have been participating, and to all who have taken time to read these blogs, reflect on them and contribute to the conversation. I value what you’re doing, and am in awe of your courage to come forward, and say,

“Yes, I will talk about race in this election year. Yes, I will speak up and share my experience, my frustrations and my beliefs. My hopes, too.”

If you haven’t yet read these posts, visit the Race 2012 Blogging page on this site for a complete list. It is worth your time. I want to particularly thank Totsy Mae for creating an exquisite work of art just for the blogging project. Totsy, you are one talented lady!

The bloggers’ posts have been so good, it’s not enough for me to just list them all. Which is why I’ve gathered some of my favorite excerpts to share with you. These quotes, included here, truly resonate for me, and I hope they give you some food for thought:

I felt like I was in the minority for the first time in my life, with my trip to Egypt, my love of a young Arab man, who just happened to be Muslim…I saw things a little differently and…grew angry as people were screaming about immigration, as if the only immigrants in America were Latinos – what I wanted to scream from the top of my lungs was that we were all hurting in some way due to the cultural misunderstandings.”Destination Unknown

“I tickled Ruby’s back while answering her question about what might have happened to her had she stopped to drink out of the wrong water fountain during the Jim Crow era. That pebble was more like a river rock. And I’m not going to lie: I feel like there’s an anchor weight attached to my heart every single time I lift that veil.”Thematically Fickle

“I can’t begin to tell you how many times people have tried the old post-modern ‘race is not an issue’ argument since the president took office. But as a person of color, I know what is not said is often much louder than what is said.”BoomerWizdom

“The worst thing to do with a problem is to hide it. It festers, grows more powerful. The more we speak up about what is wrong in the world, and suggest how to makes shifts, the more chance we have of digging ourselves out of this mess!” Heal Now and Forever Be in Peace

“As we come to the inevitable conclusion that the issue of ‘race,’ seems to be the proverbial ‘elephant in the room,’ we try to find common ground, so we can talk about issues that matter to us.”Meditating Mummy

“It’s hard to have an honest conversation because many times we’re not being honest with ourselves about race. Sometimes we know we’re being dishonest, other times, we aren’t aware of it. It’s hard. But we all, regardless of color, have to keep trying.”She’sWrite

“Undoubtedly, the word ‘race’ has taken on a much broader meaning in this election.  Rather than dancing around this fact, I’d like to think…we can move the conversation forward in authentic and meaningful ways.  The perspectives of common, everyday folk are intriguing and varied, but are rarely heard above the din of endless news spin, popular opinion, and media sound bytes.”SomerEmpress

“We might not be Racist, we might not be a raging flaming outright Bigot but these are very different animals from carrying that seed of fear and that ember of racial bias. We are by nature Xenophobic; we fear what is different from us.”QBG Tilted Tiara

I was raised by parents who taught me that everyone was equal. That your race meant very little in the scheme of things. That your race might define your culture, and that’s great, but it would never define your abilities or character.”By My Ink

And, one more:

“So, you think not talking about race makes it all better? How does that happen? Has it been working for you? Why do you think folk want to have this conversation?…If I may ask a handful of other questions, can I ask you what folks mean when they say we want to take our country back? Why are they so angry when they say that? Do you feel the same way? Do you think there’s a racial divide in America? You don’t see one? Do your friends who don’t look like you see one? You just want us all to get along? How can we get along if we don’t talk?” Totsy Mae who wrote a post that invited her readers to answer a series of questions—and the response was off the hook!

The documentary, Race 2012: A Conversation About Race & Politics in America, airs tomorrow night on PBS (check local listings), along with the next presidential debates. I encourage you to tune into both!