Why Do We Need a Racial Justice Institute?
Because it's better than a Racial Injustice Institute. Or maybe it's not. Maybe what we need is a Racial Injustice Institute that shows us how race has been and continues to be used to hurt people financially and help other people financially.
Because it's not nice and it's not mean, it's kind. 'Nice' used to mean, "foolish, stupid, senseless," from Old French nice (12c.) "careless, clumsy; weak; poor, needy; simple, stupid, silly, foolish," from Latin nescius "ignorant, unaware," literally "not-knowing," from ne- "not" (see un-) + stem of scire "to know" . . . to "fussy, fastidious" (late 14c.); to "dainty, delicate."
Kindness, however, speaks the truth in love. Even truth about pain, heartache, exploitation, and multi-generational oppression. Systems that destroy must be exposed and changed, but it's not nice to do so. It's also not mean. It's kind.
We need a racial justice institute that doesn't play nice, because that's foolish, passive, and silent. It's ignorant and weak. 'Nice' can just be a tool of oppression to keep problems from being talked about and exposed.
We need a racial justice institute that isn't mean, because that's mimicking the meanness of the injustices we seek to dismantle and restructure.
We need a racial justice institute that is kind, because truth is powerful enough on its own.
It is true that racings and racisms still privilege and disprivilege—so we need to see it wherever it is. We need sight and light rather than shadows.
With sight and light and voice and pressure we can help adjust policies and systems, and by being the best, problem-laden, kind, truthtellers we can be, we can hopefully help heal each other and at least some small portion of the world.
So let's not be nice.
Let's be kind, let's talk about race, let's talk about justice, and let's put love in action for quantifiable transformation.
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