Affirm And Amplify Individual Identities Within Our Collective Humanity

Our collective humanity is comprised of our individual identities, cultures, and lives.

Too often, we overgeneralize each other’s identities and cultures. Such overgeneralizations spark and perpetuate harmful stereotypes. 

People of the global majority are too often called on to validate, defend, and/or debunk these overgeneralizations – the very stereotypes that hurt us. 

The notion of “a single truth” or “the universal truth” is white supremacy at work attempting to silence people of the global majority from sharing their identities, perspectives, and lived experiences for multiple truths to exist.

We each hold multiple truths.

Our lived experiences are truths.

Our identities are truths.

Our cultures are truths. 

When one person of a marginalized racial identity shares a truth that conflicts with something another person of the same racial identity says, white folx will often question the contradiction and demand a singular truth from BBIA folx. 

BBIA folx are too often pressured and expected to explain their truths without acknowledgement or compensation for the emotional labor such discussions take.

Pleas of “help me understand” plague the daily lives of marginalized folx who are not only undoubtedly experts of their own lives, but must too often serve as the unpaid “diversity, equity, and inclusion” consultant in white people’s lives. People of the global majority navigate through the stereotypes and “truths” written by white folx, and our actual lived experiences which are too often denied, denounced, and devalued. We are often gaslighted with relentless questioning to “prove” our truths.

Authenticity in the histories, traditions, identities, cultures, and lives of the global majority does not always show up in the form of literature and written scholarship. 

Recognize and understand that the western written word too often perpetuates white supremacy. 

The personal, aural sharing done by people of the global majority must be authentically accepted and valued by default.

Actively work to decolonize the idea of a “single” or “universal” truth in our collective humanity.

Listen intently without interrupting when we are sharing our identities, cultures, and lives. 

Reflect deeply and internally on what we share.  

Trust our truths as authentic by default, worth amplifying and celebrating when we share stories of our life experiences. 

Affirm our individual identities and multiple truths within our collective humanity — not by inaccurately replicating our traditions or replicating what we do at all, but rather by amplifying people of the global majority who are doing the daily work of preservation and continuous creation of culture. 

Empower our youth to truly hear, vocalize, and amplify each other’s multiple truths. 

The truths of our youth are important and necessary or our collective humanity. 

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Our Collective Humanity

From o̶n̶e̶ ̶h̶u̶m̶a̶n̶ ̶r̶a̶c̶e̶ to our collective humanity.

Language matters. What we say matters.

For too long, we have relied on the societal equalizer of being part of “one human race” to evade conversations of race, racism, and systemic inequities. 

To say that we are part of “one human race” simply does not suffice. The phrase “one human race” causes erasure of identities, dismissal of injustices, and gross generalizations of cultures and peoples. 

We can no longer seek to only “equalize” ourselves in systems that perpetuate injustice. 

We protect us.

We advocate for us.

We build — for us.

We must take ownership in our relationships with each other — including in understanding our stories and struggles within our communities, and in building solidarities while celebrating joy across societally-set lines of division. 

Our language can be an act of resistance.

We can shift our language to speak directly against the harm in systems that continue to uphold white supremacy. 

Each of us has the incredible power to play and act upon our critical roles in our communities where we live, work, eat, and create joy.

Together, we can freedom dream new possibilities to uplift our own communities and each other’s livelihoods. 

We are all part of our collective humanity, one in which we all learn from, contribute to, and build upon. Within our collective humanity, we rise against our own and each other’s injustices.

We take collective stands against systemic inequities that harm us all, white protecting each other’s individuality and culture.

We have a collective responsibility to build our shared humanity. 

Beyond language is action in the form of individual, internal thought manifested in active, daily practice lived-out-loud and shared within and across communities.

Actively reflect on, respond to, and re-envision yourself, your community, and our collective humanity.

We are free to be free in our collective humanity.