Step into my life but leave your privilege behind.
There is no space for me unless you create it.
I am human like everyone in my classroom,
but privilege and oppression separate me, not just my skin tone.
This system was created to work against me.
This classroom is not a community.
Your idea of time does not align with my teachings.
Just for a second,
step into my life, but leave your privilege behind.
Imagine a room full of people, and you were the only white person.
Would you feel afraid?
What if the teacher asked what colonization was?
Would you speak up to explain or sit back in shame?
When my history is the topic, and you get it all wrong,
Do you offer an empty apology and stare blankly at me?
Do you ask me to explain my history?
Do you realize what this does to me?
You use your power to turn it around and make me feel obligated to tell you,
It’s okay, as I fight internal battles of shame.
Shame that was never mine to carry.
It’s okay, as I ignore that my life is an uphill healing journey.
But in a split second,
I freeze to ensure that you did not offend my community or me.
Then, I am expected to teach a history I’m still learning.
my skin tone speaks louder than my capacity to explain,
and you need me to tell you,