At Inspire Kindness, we believe that acts of kindness can change the world. By holding a door, stopping to help, or starting a conversation, we can communicate to others that we see them and that they are not alone on this planet. These simple actions can be the first steps, but the kind of kindness that changes the world requires more. We must build relationships with people - all sorts of people. It's hard and time-consuming and can be uncomfortable, but it is crucial to more significant kindness efforts like fighting for justice and against inequality.
To build relationships with people, especially with people with different backgrounds and customs, we must make efforts to learn about and listen to each other. It's far easier to judge people and situations that we haven't taken the opportunity to understand.
"You never really understand a person until you consider things from his point of view ... until you climb inside of his skin and walk around in it."
— Atticus Finch in To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee
The world is hurting right now, and we want to hurt right along with it, but empathy requires understanding. So, take the opportunity to learn about Black history and the ongoing challenges of Black people. Here's lesson one, learn by doing a little homework rather than asking a Black friend or colleague to explain things to you.
Read what Najoh Tita-Reid, a senior executive of marketing reinvention at Logitech says in his article warning against burning out Black employees:
"First, do not inundate your black colleagues with requests to help you understand and solve racial injustice as if it is their duty. Remember that in many workplaces, we are outnumbered—and so many people are asking us for our input right now.
So if you have told your black counterpart this week either that you are now finally aware of your white privilege and want an action plan to learn about the black struggle, or if you used your last conference call to confess all of your racial sins over the years, know that chances are 100 other well-meaning nonblack people have done the same that day. Be mindful.
Second, take responsibility for your education on racial issues. Keep in mind that black people had to use their free time to learn about other races, given that the American educational curriculum only taught a minimal amount of black history. So we do not think it's too much to ask our professional peers to take the time to do research, read books, and watch films. Start today and learn; then feel free to ask genuine questions."
Now is the time for education; it's time to make significant efforts to understand racial inequality. We are keeping this list of resources and would love your help in adding to it. If something has helped you learn and grow in this area, please email firstname.lastname@example.org to add it to this list.
Black History and Antiracism Resources
Books to Read
Movies to Watch
If Beale Street Could Talk (Hulu)
I Am Not Your Negro (Amazon Prime)
Dear White People (Netflix)
American Son (Netflix)
King in the Wilderness (HBO)
When they See Us (Netflix)
Slavery by Another Name (PBS)
Podcasts to Hear
1619 (NY Times)
Code Switch (NPR)
Broken Justice (PBS)
Pod Save the People
Pod For The Cause from The Leadership Conference on Civil & Human Rights
Resources for Children
Things to Watch
Remember the Titans
Books to Read
One Crazy Summer
A Kids Book About Racism
Just Mercy for Young Adults
Websites for Parents
Coretta Scott King Book Award Winners (given to authors and illustrators that demonstrate an appreciation of African American culture and universal human values)
Again, if something has helped you learn more about antiracism or Black history and it is not on this list, please email email@example.com.
How to Avoid Racism While Traveling
While the travel industry has suffered as a result of COVID-19, the resilient Black Lives Matter movement has not allowed the pandemic to put its mission to end racial injustice on hold. Although Airbnb has now chosen to support BLM in its fight, many black individuals may be hesitant to use the platform for travel in 2021 after its lack of protection against racial discrimination.
In an effort to support Black travelers with concerns of racial discrimination and to help ensure they have safe travel experiences, a team of experts at Million Mile Secrets created: "Airbnb while Black: How to avoid racism while traveling" — you can check it out below:
This guide provides insight on Airbnb's response to accusations of racial discrimination, tips on how to prepare for travel to ensure a safe and successful trip, and alternative lodging options for Black travelers.
"Be kind – listen. Be kind – learn. Be kind – get comfortable being uncomfortable. Be kind – have tough conversations with your family, friends, and colleagues. Be kind – donate to organizations committed to social justice. Be kind – seek out Black-owned businesses. Be kind – understand privilege and power. Be kind – vote. Be kind – be an antiracist. Every. Single. Day." - Forest Melton