Recently I was moved to broadcast a live presentation via social media. It was to reflect from a personal perspective on the recent events that have again highlighted the inequities imposed on certain communities, especially at this time People of Color.
In part, it was prompted by various direct and indirect messages I had been receiving as a result of showing my support for those fighting for true equality and dignity in the face of systematic, structural oppression. There was a great deal of positive response and heartfelt appreciation. I am very grateful for that, and it inspires me to continue my support and allyship in whatever humble way I can offer it.
However, it is intriguing to me that there is still an element of our society that is so committed to their privilege and mired in its defense that they feel to need to attack and threaten not just me but also my family. The tired old tropes get wheeled out, up to and including being told that I should “go back to where I came from if I don’t like it.” If that can happen to me, as a comfortable white person of privilege, then imagine the vitriol faced by minorities must endure each and every day.
Fun fact. I am not going anywhere. And as I assume the honor in the coming months of transitioning into the role of President at SIETAR USA, I will be committed to building on the work of my respected predecessors in identifying and eradicating any and all barriers to full inclusion of all. This includes, but is not limited to, those who favor us with their investment as a members, or those that chose to honor us with their service as a board member, committee member or general volunteer.
The work of full equity, diversity and inclusion starts with our own minds. If that well is poisoned, all we will do is continue to inflict the same sickness on those who come to drink from whatever knowledge we have to offer. Conversations will be uncomfortable; learning will be confronting. So it should be. The work is hard, but like all worthwhile toil, the freedom that it promises is breathtaking.
SIETAR USA President Elect