You can’t be prejudiced, racist, sexist, or homophobic. After all, you belong to this faith.
You don’t carry pitchforks and march with the Charlottesville gang.
You don’t vote for Trump and you started the Women’s March chapter in your city.
You are a good person with good intentions; you love everyone, and your tax returns prove it.
But I challenge you; I charge you: if here is where you’re tuned out, this is precisely and exactly the time to tune in.
Do you love people of color, or do you tolerate us as long as we aren’t too disruptive to your agenda?
Do love LGBTQ people or do you only love the cis white male ones and forget the L, the B, the T, and the Q — especially the ones of color in your fight?
Do you reflect the culture of your congregation in your leadership, or do you check boxes and fill quotas?
…You do not have to be white supremacist to benefit from white supremacy any more than you have to be a misogynist to still benefit from the patriarchy or or a homophobe to still benefit from straight privilege.
It is not enough just to “not be a racist.” We must expect ourselves to be actively anti-racist. It is not enough to not be sexist. We must expect ourselves to be intentionally and consistently disruptive of gender discrimination. It is not enough to not be a transphobic. We must expect ourselves to be obsessed with supporting the achievement of justice for trans* people across the globe as we are with our own.
This reading is an excerpt from Ms. Packnett's 2018 Ware Lecture.