Updated: Apr 3
As a Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion consultant for over seven years, and a Black femme-presenting woman my whole life, I believe that personal anti-racism education is critical for personal growth and the advancement of equity and inclusion in society. Racism, prejudice, and discrimination are deeply ingrained in our social, cultural, and political systems, and can only be effectively addressed through education and self-awareness. Personal anti-racism education is the process of examining one's own biases and prejudices and developing the skills and knowledge to challenge and dismantle systemic racism.
Anti-Black racism has continued to terrorize and kill Black citizens and many individuals are not aware how this is fueled by the people-led systems that prefer and value Whiteness and being in its proximity more than equality and protection for all. These systems aren't nameless, cold, and robotic entities—they are created and made of people like us, so unless we, as people unlearn what got us into this mess, we will remain unequipped to redesign these inequitable systems. They will continue to be oppressive unless we change from within.
Personal anti-racism education is important because it helps individuals understand the impact of racism on their lives and the lives of others. By becoming more self-aware and informed, individuals can learn to recognize their own biases and work to unlearn them, reducing the perpetuation of systemic racism. One would be surprised to learn that many of us have absorbed racist beliefs in the most subtle manners through business processes, the media we absorb, and general socialization. These behaviors are pervasive because they don't look or feel as acidic and toxic as the blatant acts of racism we were taught to view as wrong. Having racist beliefs embedded in your identity doesn't make you a bad person unless you fail or refuse to address them. Being a "good person" is when we make mistakes and work to learn better. That is what the goal is for anti-racism coaching—to move from passive to active—learning and unlearning to be better people. In addition, personal anti-racism education empowers individuals to become active allies and advocates for equity and inclusion in their personal and professional lives.
It's key to understand that personal anti-racism education is not a one-time event, but rather a lifelong process of learning, self-reflection, and growth. It requires an ongoing commitment to learning about the history of racism and its effects, engaging in difficult conversations, and taking action to challenge and dismantle racist attitudes and systems. Personal anti-racism education is essential for individuals who want to make a positive impact in their communities and create a more equitable and inclusive world. I can help you get there if you give me the chance. If you choose to listen more and react less during the unlearning.
Personal anti-racism education is a crucial component of personal growth and the advancement of equity and inclusion in society. By committing to ongoing learning and self-reflection, individuals can challenge their own biases, promote diversity, equity, and inclusion, and create a more just and equitable world for all.
If you need a space to either unpack your internalized racism/colorism or to build your resilience to be a better anti-racist accomplice, I'm here to help.