Over the past several days, I’ve watched a lot of things happen in our country. An unannounced march in the night with Hitler shirts and tiki torches. A white supremacist rally ending in violence, injury, and death. The president going in front of cameras and defending the white supremacists. It has been infuriating, frightening, sickening, and unavoidable.
I was 13 and sitting in the basement of my childhood home in the Amish-laden countryside of Pennsylvania.
We know about hope. Hope was the promise that was presented to us when Obama was in office. It was the change that we could believe in. We betted on hope and applauded ourselves on making change happen and embodying progress by electing the first African American man into the White House.
I am always worried to the point of nail-biting when my spouse leaves in the morning for Boston Medical Center if she’ll return home to me, because she’s always stopped by the Cambridge or Boston police. They don’t see Dr. Thea James.
Back in the day, Girlfriends was one of my favorite sitcoms to watch. To see the interactions between strong Black women on television that mirrored what I was exposed to in my family always left me joyful and anxious to watch the next episode.
When the 2015 Urbana Missions Conference tackled race head-on last December, it seemed that the evangelical Christian community could finally say "Black Lives Matter" without hedging.
The discomfort of being THE black guy in the room is something that I have to negotiate over and over again. Often/especially in progressive and/or queer political spaces, I am one of very few people of color—it seems that there are places where the demographic “count” to cover all bases means that there’s one of this and one of that and a whole bunch of white folks at the table.
When I was in the fourth grade, I saw a video of Martin Luther King, Jr. delivering his “I Have a Dream” speech for the first time. As I was nine and we were watching it on a blurry box TV, I didn’t pay much attention to it. That was unfortunate because, as an adult, I see that so much of that speech dealt with the circumstances I should’ve been living in.
A couple of weeks ago I had the great opportunity to participate in the Faith and Family Power Summit in Salt Lake City, UT, organized by the National LGBTQ Taskforce.
This past Tuesday I was given the honor and challenge to speak on the behalf of cis-black men for #TransLiberationTuesday.