As parents, I wish we would engage in more thoughtful conversations about the role of race in our lives.
In our children's lives.
Who does your child play with on a regular basis?
Who do you invite to your home for play dates?
Who are the characters in the books you pick out at the library?
Who are the characters in the films you view in the theaters?
What color are the dolls or action figures your child plays with?
I've had conversations with my son about his race from an early age. I didn't want him to be surprised that people may react to him differently because of the level of melanin in his skin. I want him to be aware that one day he'll stop being "cute" and may cause some one to walk quickly as he approaches. One day.
It pains me to even write this. But it's a reality as we wait on the world to change.
I don't understand parents who say "we don't see race, we're all human". Yes, our humanity is a fact. However, there is a reality in the U.S.that people are treated differently because of the way they look. We need to help our children understand this and help them recognize when they are participating in this mistreatment.
This is hard work.
But it's important work.
We have to raise our children to love the diversity of all of God's people. He made us different colors so that we could marvel in the beauty of his work. Instead we have come to think that ignoring it will make the pain go away.