Rosa, like I said in the post, “…they set the privilege of their race aside, take a step back, and see that everyone doesn’t have the same life experience that they do. They’ve actually changed the course of their lives in an effort to make the world a lot more equitable place for black Americans.

What I’m saying is that I know more than one white person who told me, decades after my meeting them initially, that they were raised in an abject racist environment. To tell racist jokes, treat black Americans with cruelty, hatred, and disdain was the norm. In fact, it was expected.

And in the case of the two people who come to mind (who shall remain nameless), they put aside the privilege and hatred that mandated they treat black Americans as less than, and had one-on-one encounters with a black person. In doing so they, discovered that “black people are people, too,” and what they had been taught by their parents was patently wrong and racist. They learned even though their new black friend grew up on “the other side of the tracks,” they shared a common humanity. (Both blacks and whites, had dreams, loved their families and friends, and wanted to live a happy life.)

Now keep in mind, this happened in the South so encountering black people was inevitable. They “changed the course of their lives” by choosing to not follow the path of hatred paved by their forefathers. In their family, they took the road less traveled. They chose not to hate and now understand we as black people are just as human as they are. This would have never happened decades ago, had they not made a conscious decision to do so. That decision, Rosa, made the world of every single black person they encountered a lot more equitable. They’ve chosen to live in harmony and not in discord. And that sort of paradigm shift ripples out to others.

When I used the word “world,” I didn’t mean literally the whole world. I meant the world as in the space in which people live.

See what I mean?

Written by

Artist, actor, author, editorial director of Our Human Family (http://medium.com/our-human-family). Connect via social media: @clayrivers. Love one another.

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