In times of crisis, the only possibility for making good use of rage is compassionate action.
Without our rage, and without our compassion, what becomes of our collective psyche? It isn’t anything worth thinking about; the worst of our dreams and nightmares only reflect a reality which is far more likely to feed our despair, our fear, than to nurture understanding, clarity, and critique.
White people, you are not to blame for your racism. It was a fact of your birth, a dysfunctional way of thinking and being that was unfortunately passed onto you through your lineage. This shame that we feel, it is a weakness which demands attention. We should see it as a guide to establishing right action.
When tempered by self-compassion, listen to your shame: nurture it, understand its trembling and lonely voice, love it, and most importantly know that it is justified.
Take responsibility; develop inner alignment with your moral conscience. The age of complicity is falling in around you. The world of love and compassion begins, and is born, in feeding that dwindling and undying flame of rage, resistance, sabotage, self-criticism, and courage, necessary to overcome this moment. There are bonds of trust and solidarity that exist within all people.
Look around, and ponder these words: “Humanity, born in chains: this earth, this moonlight, this one love.”
We need engaged citizens in this time of social and political upheaval, people who are not afraid to be citizen activists. Who can, as Ida B. Wells once remarked, “shine the light of truth” — who value action, over apathetic and useless fretting; who are willing to be uncomfortable for a bit, to start dialogues in their classrooms, at their office spaces, with the family. Who use personal conviction, and tender, and soft-spoken affirmations to nurture, and give bloom to the conditions needed for a democratic ethos in the heart of this desert.
Despite all doubts, we are the hope. I love you, and give you my best wishes.