By Linda Dove
September 3, 2017
Have you too experienced that uncomfortable feeling when you are new to a group and someone forgets to introduce you? For me, that is not affirming. It feels like a put-down. Naming is powerful, isn’t it? And not naming is just as powerful.
Today I name White Privilege in the context of White Supremacy. I will talk briefly about this in the context of our country’s recent upheavals. Charlottesville is the example close to home where the ALT-right, the KKK, the neo-Nazi terrorists and sympathizers proclaimed their hateful truths and named the statue of a slave-owning Confederate leader as a symbol of their “free speech” right to preach evil.
Eve Ensler, in an interview on This I Believe, makes my point in a quite other context. Eve is a performer and the feminist author of the Vagina Monologues. She wrote:
I believe in the power and mystery of naming things. Language has the capacity to transform our cells, rearrange our learned patterns of behavior and redirect our thinking. I believe in naming what’s right in front of us because that is often what is most invisible.
As a country, after decades of near silence, we are yet again at a threshold in openly naming racist acts and speech. Good. Let’s see Charlottesville, tragic though it was, as a fresh start in Identifying and defeating racist terrorism.
First, though, I want to share with you a little of my own evolution in this context. [Read more…]