Kimberly Gauthier from Keep The Tail Wagging gave me permission to share this powerful reminder. I’ve been working on becoming anti-racist for a while, but I know people visit my platforms to see great photos of dogs, not to get my take on current events. I’ve been afraid to address Black Lives Matter on the blog. I didn’t want to ruin someone’s day by reminding them of the injustices in the world. But the worst choice is not to say anything. I can use my voice to help fight racism, so I am trying. This is not a political post. This is a personal post about human rights. Discrimination is not a left versus right issue, it is an issue that all humans should speak out against. As Bishop Desmond Tutu said, “If you are neutral in situations of injustice, you have chosen the side of the oppressor.”
I have five kids, and like every mom, I think my kids are amazing human beings. One of my kids is a trans lesbian. One of my daughters-in-law is Black. My niece is biracial. They are three of the smartest, kindest, and funniest people that I know. My heart breaks to think that people would hurt them because of their skin color or sexual orientation. It hurts that people are treated differently, often violently, because of their skin color, gender, or who they love.
When my children were in high school, I worried that as teens, they would make a stupid mistake. But I was never concerned about what might happen to them if the police picked them up, I had every confidence that my kids would be okay. During those years, I watched a video with Black moms telling their children how to behave in the same situation. I cried and was shook by the reality of two different scenarios based on skin color. Sadly, 15 years later, Black parents still need to have “the talk” with their children. Not every cop is a bad cop, but we need to address the fact that racism is part of our society. It is more than police brutality.
Chances are that you’re here on the blog because you love animals. If you can speak out about puppy mills, the Yulin dog meat festival, dogfighting rings, and factory farms, then I hope you’ll also speak out against injustices against human beings.
If you want to be a better ally to the Black Lives Matter Movement, this guide from Great Big Story is a good place to start.
Looking for Black-owned pet businesses to support? Check out this post from Boogie the Pug.
And since it is Pride Month, here are some tips to be a better LGBTQIA ally.
And while I believe it is important that I share my personal story, I believe it is also important that we center the voices of those who are most hurt by bigotry. I would love to host those voices on the Daily Dog Tag.