Saturday found me at the largest March on Washington in the history of this country. It was AMAZING. Again people of every ethnicity, color, sexual orientation, and religious and political persuasion were marching together, chanting, sharing, caring and being kind to one another. The messages were clear there is much work to be done. As I said in A Path To Healing, there is much work to be done and we need to be healthy to do it.– To keep our sons and daughters out of jail and in school, to keep our youth respectful of themselves and others , to foster examples of integrity as a behavior not just an ideal, and to say no, with respect and dignity, to those ideas, laws and circumstances that would belittle , denigrate, separate or segregate us, from one another.
I was acutely aware, however that African Americans were not well represented. I have heard the arguments that “their struggle is not our struggle. Do not get caught up in thinking they are for us too”. Most recently the argument to exclude ourselves has been “they have not marched for ‘Black Lives Matter’”.
As a Sociologists I am interested in asking questions.; Are the issues of a women’s right to choose and equal pay for equal work only pertinent to Caucasian women? Are the issues of misogyny, racism, xenophobia, bigotry, civil and human rights and health care, concerns of only Caucasian women? Were not the organizers of the March different ethnicities and all women of color?
It is true that this is the first time Caucasian women have been confronted with such a blatant attack on their human rights and the misogyny, or is it? . Was the behavior of white men during slavery not an example of disrespect and loathing of their mates in some instances? Of course not to the degree that the inhumanity was visited upon us, but present nonetheless, and so it continues.
As for Caucasians not marching for Black Lives Matter, I didn’t march either. I didn’t march because I didn’t know the times or places to go. Was that due to inadequate organizing, advertising or both ? I don’t know. I can only say it was not because of lack of interest, or compassion. What I do know is there were MANY Caucasian women who had on t-shirts or held banners with Black Lives Matter on the signs. What I do know is whenever BLM was mentioned the crowd roared.
I want to acknowledge, however, our sisters who are single parents and may not have been able to find a babysitter, or pay for the metro for 4 people, or thought it too dangerous to bring their children. Or they are too overwhelmed with caring for others to recognize this is an opportunity to create change.
Let us not segregate ourselves and think we have to do this alone. As we do with so much of our lives, we sacrifice ourselves and become victims. Let us discontinue taking care of everyone else but ourselves. Let us stand up and infuse ourselves into this movement and make our voices heard.
As a Naturopathic physician, I know what taking care of everyone else but ourselves has created? Dis-ease. That is why we are dying younger and faster than any other group of women in America. My next book, Enough! When Sacrifice Has Gone Too Far, speaks to this issue and provides a toolkit for creating a different outcome. Change your reality – get involved with yourself and others and make a difference.!