For the past several months, I have been doing a lot of listening. Listening to news outlets, to protestors, to talk show hosts and their guests, to politicians, and to friends. It's a lot to take in and digest, but one thing is certain, and frankly, has been for entirely too long: America has a deep-seeded, systemic problem with race.
Normally, I like to keep my personal and political views separate from my business lest I make my clients feel uncomfortable in an environment where their comfort should be paramount. But we are in a time of massive discomfort, and I believe the discomfort we're experiencing around the topic of race is important and necessary for the sake of progress.
As a person endowed with white privilege, I feel it is my moral responsibility to take a stance and to use the platform I have to voice my support for my black friends and neighbors, and to try to influence positive change in any way that I can. Which brings me to a critical talking point I keep hearing repeated: it is not enough to be non-racist, one must also be anti-racist. I interpret this very simply as "put your money where your mouth is". Words have power, but they alone do not make change happen...actions do. And so I have begun taking action in a tangible way by setting up recurring donations to the following charities:
American Civil Liberties Union
Center for Constitutional Rights
These are organizations doing real work to influence real changes for black Americans, and I am proud to support them. If you've agreed with what I've had to say in this statement, and if you're in a position to give, I invite you to donate as well.
I touch bodies for a living. My work requires that I literally look beyond a person's skin to do my job. In anatomical terms the skin is considered "superficial" and in massage we mostly bypass that layer in order to get to the "deep", to what's really important. I think we should all do our best to look beyond the superficial and focus on the deep, on what really matters. Our massaged bodies are better for it, and likewise, our society would be better for it.