The following is excerpted from Frank Vyan Walton, a black journalist, in the Daily Kos Aug. 21, 2021.
This is a sickness. It’s an infection. it’s a plague.
We desperately need the cure — which unfortunately is the hardest thing to achieve, because it’s courage. Courage to challenge our own deepest and darkest fears and worries. Courage to take the risk that the person that scares you — might not be all that bad. That even though we’ve had previous bad experiences, even though we know nothing about them, even though we’ve been systematically taught by the media — through decades of mostly white, mostly male representation on screen — that even if we have an atavistic terror that non-white and/or other gendered people are scary and dangerous we have to swallow that nervous ball in the pit of our stomach and treat them like a human being anyway.
We have to be willing to accept that even things we think we generally “know” about each other — things we’ve been methodically trained and indoctrinated with — just might be completely wrong in any specific case.
We have to live without fear. We have to forget what we think we know and learn what we don’t. We have to live with courage — and grace.
We have to treat everyone as if they’re Ray Roseberry and Jenna Ryan.
Heaven help us.