We have all witnessed children react to something that frightens them by closing their eyes and plugging their ears. They feel as though they’ve successfully protected themselves and are no longer in danger; they have eliminated the existence of that which scares them. As adults, we know better. We see their desire to hide from their fear but recognize that closing their eyes and plugging their ears does absolutely nothing to eliminate the perceived threat. Whatever scares them is still there.

As white people in America, we are being challenged to learn about, listen to and, for once, center the…

White people cry out, “Teaching Black history is divisive! BIPoC-focused education is anti-white!” as educational programs and state governments across the country work to limit, and even ban, Critical Race Theory.

Since the word ‘divisive’ is so incredibly popular right now, let’s focus on what it means: Tending to cause disagreement or hostility between people. Reading this definition raises a few key questions: One, what is more hostile than America’s treatment of people labeled as nonwhite? Two, what could possibly cause more disagreement than lying? And three, what is more divisive than excluding the stories of major groups of people…

Imagine entering a shelter for victims of abuse and asking, “Why can’t you just get along with your partner?” This is the dismissive and cruel question we pose to marginalized people when we tell them to ignore the lineage of suffering that America, the abuser, has caused.

Last month we witnessed the conclusion of the trial of Derek Chauvin for the brutal murder of George Floyd, a painfully poignant example of the history of abuse toward Black people in this country. From the 4 million deaths of African people caused by the Middle Passage, to the unbearable misery of chattel…

Lindsay Messoline

Teacher with 20-year career of serving underrepresented populations and low-resource communities.

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