by Beverly Daniel Tatum, from her book Why Are All the Black Kids Sitting Together in the Cafeteria? And Other Conversations About Race:
"I sometimes visualize the ongoing cycle of racism as a moving walkway at the airport. Active racist behavior is equivalent to walking fast on the conveyor belt. The person engaged in active racist behavior has identified with the ideology of our White supremacist system and is moving with it. Passive racist behavior is equivalent to standing still on the walkway. No overt effort is being made, but the conveyor belt moves the bystanders along to the same destination as those who are actively walking. Some of the bystanders may feel the motion of the conveyor belt, see the active racists ahead of them, and choose to turn around… But unless they are walking actively in the opposite direction at a speed faster than the conveyor belt – unless they are actively antiracist – they will find themselves carried along with the others."
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We host free online conversations on race and racism in America. If you are a White person and have never talked or thought much about racism, we provide a productive space based in curiosity with the goal of learning together.
Most Black people and other people of color have a very different experience of race and racism than White people. We provide space for White people to discuss thoughts, feelings, and experiences of race and how we can help create equity for all.
We began convening online conversations on race and racism, specifically for White people, in June of 2020 after the murder of George Floyd in Minneapolis. We believe that White people must be part of the solution to systemic racism in America, and that when Whites are silent and inactive regarding race they are (perhaps unknowingly) perpetuating the problems of racism. Laura Keir is the founder and facilitator of White Conversations on Race. She is a White woman living in Eugene, Oregon with years of experience learning about racism and convening conversations on various topics.
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