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  • Seema

an honest conversation

I interviewed a White, cis male, Conservative, 33-year-old Mormon. Here were some of his thoughts.

I know that racism exists. I know that bias and prejudice exists. But I think we do a good job with some of our institutions to keep it in check as much as possible...

There's people in my life and friends I know -- including myself - I can't help it some times thinking negative thoughts about people of other races other cultures. A lot of it is driven by media and the news and what you read. I always have to keep that in check in my mind, too...It is hard for me to relate to other people other cultures sometimes.

I certainly have family members that say racist things, disparage other cultures, make jokes about other races. I know people personally that do those things. Speaking personally, it really bothers me when people jump Metro turnstiles. It's never people that look like me, in suits. I struggle with that sometimes, thinking negative thoughts. Not taking a step back to ask why are they doing it. I immediately think they're breaking the law, stealing from the public. There's things like that. You have to keep yourself in check. Put yourself in other people's shoes. It's not easy.

George Floyd hit me pretty hard. I was more amazed that no one stepped in. As mad as I was about the officer doing it, I was really mad at the other officers for not stepping in. I believe it was racism.

We waste a lot of time as a society fighting things that shouldn't be a problem if people acted more honorably.

I don't know what we're supposed to do. Before, the Martin Luther King quote, "I dream of a day people will be judged by the content of their character and not the color of their skin." I always thought that that was what antiracism was. But now, I guess I'm kind of confused what we're supposed to do as a society. It's no longer color blindness we're now supposed to see color but not care about the differences. I struggle with that concept. What does not being racist or antiracism look like? I still don't know the answer clearly.

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