Participating in our (MCCSF) weekly silent protest on Castro & Market Street in solidarity to end racism provided me opportunities to see how much work we still need to do in a ‘Post-Racism’ America. I understand that I carry with me social privilege from being born white and male. My privilege continues to increase due to living in the United States, holding two undergraduate degrees, and one graduate degree. Being a Veteran also adds to my privilege.
When others begin to look at the marginalized aspects of my life, this is where I begin to lose some of my privilege. Being an out member of the LGBTQI community, I become part of a subsection of our society that is not afforded the same rights as heterosexuals in many parts of this country. Either through employment or housing discrimination and marriage equality to name but a few. Even being within this marginalize community, I still have my privilege of being a white male as I walk through a world of queers and strangers each day.
We have seen in the news over the last couple of years where businesses have refused to provide services to LGBTQI people. It wasn’t so long ago when Black Americans were refused services by businesses, seats on public transportation, as well as employment and housing opportunities to name a few.
The systematic incarceration of young Black men in this country has been equated to the new Jim Crow laws. This devaluation of human life, as well as the separation of the beloved from their families continues to be exacerbated by the deaths of innocence and unarmed young Black man.
Just as the white men stood with the leaders of the civil rights movement, I believe it is essential that I must stand up and speak out against the onslaught being perpetrated against men of color by law-enforcement. I encourage other clergy and men like me to stand in protest as well because #BlackLivesMatter.