While our children were young, we sometimes made up our own words.
A request to pick up their toys, go take a bath or stop slamming the door was likely to be met with, “Yeah, but…” followed by what they felt was a more appropriate thing to do. It happened so often that I found myself repeatedly responding, “No yeah buts.” Eventually it ran together to become the word “yabbut”.
I’m reminded of that now, because I’m seeing an awful lot of “yeah, buts” on my Facebook feed by well meaning, good hearted people in response to posts from people of color.
“Black Lives Matter.”
“Yeah, but All Lives Matter.”
“George Floyd’s death is awful.”
“Yeah, but this violence and looting has to stop.”
“Systemic racism is real.”
“Yeah, but I’ve experienced reverse racism.”
And so it goes. You’ve probably seen it too.
No yeah, buts!
Please stop responding and just listen. Allow people of color in your life to share their experiences and pain, without responding, “Yeah, but…”
Some people talk as part of their thinking process, and some of us think in order to talk. I’m one of the latter, so I’m not going to be saying much else on this topic right now. I am thinking, reading, and studying.
This is where I’ve started my research.
The National Museum of African American History and Culture website:
I’d be glad if you would join me on the journey.
And, “No yabbuts.”
© Shirley K. Weyrauch
Shirley K. Weyrauch
I love reading, writing, and photography! Spending time with my family and friends around the kitchen table is about the best occasion I know. I'm just beginning to stretch my creative wings, so here's to gentle breezes and clear skies.