Black Lives Matter

For the first time since I started blogging, I find myself unable to say anything useful about the garden.

We need to listen without prejudice. Really listen. And then we need to change.

White privilege affects everything we do and everything we think. Until we acknowledge that, we cannot change.

Black Lives Matter. No ifs and buts. It’s time to listen.

Clematis ‘Jackmanii Superba’ and ‘Princess Diana’

I would really recommend this half hour podcast from Triyoga Talks with Dianne Bondy. We are all responsible for what happens next.

20 Comments Add yours

  1. Martin Poole says:

    Good for you Ali. Totally agree. White privilege affects everything we do and everything we think and we all have to change.
    We celebrate and enjoy nature in our gardens – there is nothing natural about racism.

    1. Thank you Martin, I think we are waking up for all these forms of micro racism that affect people’s lives and life chances in such a profound way.

  2. Lawson Macdonald says:

    Well said.

    1. Thank you Lawson. Together we can change.

  3. Ann Mackay says:

    Agreed! It is time for change…

  4. Ali,
    Do you have the same issues in England? It is such a mess here. I saw people unfollowing a famous blogger here because she posted the black screen on Instagram. How silly. People fighting, arguing, judging, and no one really examining their own hearts.

    1. Yes, Cindy, we do. I think it permeates everything and in many ways the subtle stuff is harder to shift. There are obvious differences in social justice, health, education, housing, job opportunities, policing. There are not-obvious-to-White-people attitudes and actions that occur every day. Assumptions about people and their intent, for instance. There is also the expectation (if you are black) that you will not be defended or protected or cared for in the same way. Which alters everything.

  5. I’ve come a long way toward shedding my “white privilege” prejudices inherited from my Southern heritage. None in my family or among my friend denigrated the African-Americans, probably because they kept mostly to themselves in their own conclaves or neighborhoods. They simply were part of our Southern culture. Then along came the Civil Rights Movement coupled with Vietnam War protests. Have we returned to the same vitriolic combustions again? Hence, I try to “hide out” in my garden, my bubble space, and try to retrieve a bit of peace.

    1. I think it has to come back again until it is fixed, Jo. There has been progress, but there is still a long way to go. Until black people feel as safe and protected and nurtured and celebrated, there is work to do.

  6. hafsamajid says:

    This is brilliant and very well said. Thank you for sharing – feel free to read my blog post on the #blacklivesmatter misconception.

    1. Thank you Hafsa. I found your blogpost a very interesting read. I have lost faith with BBC reporting these last couple of years. I naively used to take great pride in the BBC and thought it only spoke the unbiased truth. This is just part of the silly national identity where we think we know best. I hope we can move forwards in recognition that we have a very skewed focus. It is possibly up to individuals too to be more discerning when they access and process news stories.

  7. I love this line, Ali: We need to listen without prejudice. Really listen. And then we need to change.

    Absolutely. I have been learning this myself. Thank you for being in this struggle with everyone and leading the way.

    1. Yeah, I stole that from George Michael! 😂 But yes. That is one mantra for all of us.

  8. Great post straight from the heart! Discussing racial issues is tricky because it is such a sensitive subject and it is very polarized, still, I decided to write about it and throw my 5 cents into the mix. I wrote an article recently titled “Unalienable Rights of Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of happiness looking back at history and where it all started Feel free to check it out.

    1. Thanks Joanne. Your article is very informative. School curricula need to be rewritten to properly explore this history, don’t they? For too long we have glossed over the truth and so many stories have been lost. I was touched by the reflections of Malcolm X. And how there was a place for both types of protest, as peaceful protest was not enough.

  9. Well said Ali 🙂

  10. Jenna Bower says:

    There are so many metaphors to pull from the garden into this conversation. It is time for a rebirth, for old values to die away and give space for new growth.

    1. Yes, there are. I have found myself unable to draw on garden metaphors this time though, as it seemed too glib. I feel very aware of my own comfortable privilege. I’m trying to take a step back and be quiet, and listen. I think maybe we have reached a tipping point and there are enough people (led by the younger generation; what a generation they are turning out to be) and take this forward. You are right, we need to create space for regrowth, which is often stimulated by a good hard prune, maybe back to the ground. Oh look. Metaphors are back.

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