It’s clear by now that America’s original (and ongoing) sin is the way we treat black people. It’s also clear that as a white guy it’s not enough to quietly not be racist; I have to actively work to oppose it. What I’m working through right now is how.

I’ve made it (partially) through Step 0: educating myself. I read essays 1, I follow smarter people than me on Twitter 2- I don’t have all the details and true understanding yet, but the overall picture is clear.

But I have a harder time with Step 1: taking action and figuring out what I can do. My vote doesn’t matter much: I’m a liberal voter in San Francisco. Making a Facebook post feels weak to me, and almost everyone I interact with feels the same way anyway. I go to protests, sometimes, and I think bulking up a crowd is valuable… but the coronavirus pandemic changes that for me.

I’ve taken baby steps to be more vocal in my support with friends and at work, and I’ve donated enough money to the cause to make me a little uncomfortable. But there’s more to do, and I think the real task ahead is sustaining the effort when the current protests subside.

1 A couple good ones: The Case for Reparations, How Long Til Black Future Month

2 A couple people I’ve learned a lot from: Imani Gandy, Mekka Okereke