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Let's Talk About Racism: By Donta Hughes

Racism for some reason is a very touchy subject, that often gets minimized. People sometimes feel that, if it didn’t happen to them, it didn’t happen. That’s not true at all. When racism is minimized it’s a cop out because people don’t want to deal with the reality of having a problem so big on their hands to fix. The truth is, we need to confront and attack racism wherever it is and whenever it shows up. Racism seem to be a difficult conversation, but it’s a conversation worth having and it need to happen. Racism should be discussed in every city, state, school and household. There are no excuses for racism only shame. Let’s stop making excuses for something that’s traumatic for the people targeted with this nasty, disturbing, heinous behavior. Let’s stop making racists people feel entitled and emboldened with the excuses that’s being made for their behavior. Racism exists all over this country and if you don’t believe it to be true, you are part of the reason why it still exists. The shameful part about racism is that the targets are usually attacked for speaking against it. People will rather sweep it under the rug, rather than deal with it head on. Another shameful thing about racism is that if roles were reversed people will then understand what it does to an individual. Is that what it will take for people to care about this ridiculous, yet blatant problem? R.O.A.R has been attacked for doing the right thing since day one. What other group of people are speaking against this ugly part of our society? How can anyone have a problem with an anti-racist group of people? My kids were targets of racism more than once. Sad to say, but the country, city, community and beyond have called them liars, talked about how they don’t have fathers, said they live in their grandparent’s basement. All stereotypes and untrue. When they protested for not being able to show posters for Black History Month, they had to see comments of people saying they were stupid, they don’t want to learn, they're lazy, that’s all they know, were called fat and even said they would not be successful in the workforce. I said that some students were on the Dean’s list and I was called a liar. I even pointed out that white students were also in the protest and was again called a lair. This is the country we live in. People speak about equality, denouncing equity, but how can you without knowing or caring about what the ACTUAL definition is. I have heard people speak about a school board meeting in April 2019, complaining about people going past their time limit for speaking. No one talked or cared about the children that got up and cried while telling their stories of being attacked. No one talked about how families have moved away from this nonsense. A R.O.A.R leader was told “if she wants diversity and inclusion to sell her home, pack her shit and move to the shit hole north Minneapolis”. News flash, everything and every place in this country is diverse and people need to learn how to accept and be a part of it. If not, maybe those are the people that should move somewhere they do not have to worry about diversity. I am certain they would have to move off the planet. People have a problem with the words “white privilege” because there is a truth in there not many are willing to accept. As a black man I can promise you there are certain situations, questions and traumas that non-black people don’t have to come close to worrying about. There are conversations that your kids will never understand because your life doesn’t require those conversations. How can this country be great when ethnic backgrounds are looked at and/or scrutinized solely because of the color of their skin? How can this country be great when people make decisions about others before having a conversation or before trying to get to know them as a person? Furthermore, what make people think they have a right to judge anyone else’s life before they know anything about that person’s life. Racism needs to constantly be discussed, confronted and dealt with. If you really want this country to be great, let’s start by being honest about racism, let’s call it what it is, let’s have these difficult conversations, let’s begin to see each other as equals so that we can start talking about equality. I have high hopes for people, so this is something I am confident we can do, but I have been proven wrong time and time again. Nonetheless, I will keep holding on to that hope of us honestly having these conversations and putting racism permanently to death where it belongs and us moving forward as a people. Racism is alive and well. It shouldn’t be, but it is. Are you willing to stand against racism or would you prefer to not take a stand and continue allowing people to be a target of racist stupidity. What if you were the target of racism? How will you handle it? What if you woke up black, could you deal with the harsh realities we live with on a day to day basis? - Donta Hughes

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