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Listen to Ali Velshi’s message to Americans on race: It’s more than lean in.

3 min read

I found Ali Velshi's standalone segment shockingly honest. That he was allowed to use those two minutes to say what he said proves the changing times.

Ali Velshi gives America the necessary message on race

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I participated in and covered a George Floyd silent protest this weekend in Kingwood Texas, a very Red Republican suburb of Houston. Several dozens, likely more than one hundred when those who came and left with signs are counted, made their voices heard through their presence and their posters. The support we got with horn honks and mostly signs of approval showed that Kingwood is a different place than it was during the year that Occupy Kingwood occupied the same space every Saturday for 52 consecutive weeks.

It is through those lenses that one should receive Ali Velshi's most prescient statement.

“If you are white, the statistics prove that you do receive better treatment from the police,” Ali Velshi said. “White America needs to come to terms with the fact that we live in a racist society. And that there are bad cops. Police brutality is real. Disproportionate police brutality against people of color is more real. The relationship between those things is no mystery.”

Ali went on to point out that we all have biases. The problem with biases and cops is that they have the power to kill indiscriminately. They can be lethal. Cops are a reflection of society. And society knows that. That is likely why so many have now acknowledged the plight of people of color and specifically black men. The sight of the murder of a black man by a white cop in daylight even as he knew cameras were on, provided a poor reflection of society, a poor reflection of one's self.

Yes, Ali points out like many others that unless we name the problem and lean into it until it is uncomfortable until it hurts, we are not doing the job.

To get rid of biases one has to be intentional. As a black Latino, Caribbean man, the homophobic bias; NO! the homophobic hate was instilled in me from the beginning of my existence. When I saw the light of my hypocritical hateful immoral idiocy, I made the mental change. It was not till I leaned in, forced myself into gay issues, gay understandings, get over the awkwardness, did I rid myself of the scourge not only from the mind but from the heart.

White Americans must go through that catharsis as honestly with themselves as I had to do with myself to overcome what was MY PROBLEM.

Ali Velshi quoted Angela Davis just like a white woman did during our silent protest this weekend. It is not enough to be silently non-racist but vociferously anti-racist. To do that requires not just an intellectual acknowledgment but a change from the heart.

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