To say the last year in America was great would be a lie. With the coronavirus uprooting everyone's life, everyone's frustration was justified. It was disheartening having special events being cancelled and seeing loved ones get sick. However, one of the most prevalent things that happened in 2020 was the fight to end racism in America. In May of 2020 George Floyd was killed by four police officers in Minneapolis, Minnesota. This was the spark that reignited the Black Lives Matter movement, which began in 2013 by three women in response to George Zimmerman being acquitted for his role in murdering Trayvon Martin. Millions of people from all over the world pulled together to spread awareness, sign petitions, donate, call their legislators, etc. to try and end the injustice in the legal system as well as racism. Watching this all unfold before my eyes has shown me the importance of using my white privilege to do what I can to help the black community. Here are four ways you can become an ally yourself:
1. Educate Yourself.
One of the most important things I have learned while educating myself on the injustice in America is realizing that once I become uncomfortable and furious I am on the right track. There are hundreds of ways you can educate yourself through websites, books, articles, podcasts, movies, and more.
2. Show Empathy for the Black Community.
One of the most important things while advocating for the black community's rights is to realize the heartbreak, frustration, and trauma they have been through. Time and time again the world has diminished them and denied them of basic human rights. To support them we must first empathize with them and their struggles.
3. Support Black Owned Businesses.
The bottom line is supporting black owned businesses is the least we can do to support the black community. I encourage you to find local black owned businesses in your area.
Here are black owned businesses to support: https://www.goodhousekeeping.com/life/a33561639/black-owned-businesses/
4. Donate. Donate. Donate.
There are multiple organizations you can donate to that will help aid the fight to end racism. Whether it's a big or small contribution, any amount helps and goes towards raising awareness, paying bails, and helping those individuals and businesses that have faced adversity over the past year.