Lucy had a newsletter with some very important content this week. Here’s what she had to say:
Every once in a while I tiptoe on over to Reddit. There’s a subreddit called Explain Like I’m 5. I love the concept of breaking down complex things into bite-sized nuggets that make sense.

I applied that concept to two things that I thought could use a little clarifying this week. Please bear with me in my gross oversimplifications.

Why “All Lives Matter” Isn’t a Helpful or Healing Response to “Black Lives Matter”
Let’s start with the basics.

I like apples. Actually, I prefer them in pie form. But whatever. For this illustration, I like apples. Now, does me liking apples mean that I automatically don’t like pears, tomatoes, avocados, or heaping plates of spaghetti? Definitely not. Do I need to clarify all of the foods that I do like when I am singling one out? Guys, I’m not a picky eater. If you wanted me to clarify all the foods I like, we would be here for days.

Are you with me so far?

Cool. Let’s move on to a more nuanced metaphor.

Imagine your house is on fire. You are standing in your front yard staring in horror as your home, the place you’ve raised your family, celebrated holidays, enjoyed midnight snacks, and fallen asleep watching NCIS reruns is burning to the ground. It’s hot. It’s smoky. It’s devastating. Can you picture it?

You and your family are standing there with tears in your eyes and a mixture of fear, rage, and gut-wrenching horror is simmering in your gut.

The fire department arrives in a flurry of lights and sirens. But just as they start to unroll their hoses, I arrive.

You: *mournfully* My house is on fire.
Me: Yeah. Uh-huh. That’s nice. Excuse me, chief? My house is very important and so are the rest of the houses two blocks away. I need you to go hose them down first to make sure they stay safe.
You: What the fudge is wrong with you, lady?
Me: *ignoring you* It’s really very important that you acknowledge all of the other houses that aren’t on fire right now. And I need you to do it first. Before you address whatever this mess is *waving a hand in the direction of where nearly every happy memory your family made is turning to ash*
You: Listen, ma’am. My house is on fire right now. It deserves the priority attention.
Me: What fire? I don’t see any fire. My house is very important. My neighborhood is very important.

I can’t take credit for the house fire metaphor. It’s something I saw shared on social media. But I took it and ran with it.

When I say Black Lives Matter, I’m never, ever saying your life doesn’t matter. You matter very much to me. However, I am choosing this moment to put my attention on my black friends, loved ones, and readers to show them the love and respect and hope I have for them. To say “I see you. And what’s happening to you is not okay with me.”

Black Lives Matter. ❤️

What Does White Privilege Mean?
Let’s start with what white privilege doesn’t mean…
it doesn’t mean that your life isn’t hard
it doesn’t mean that you haven’t worked for and earned what you have
it doesn’t mean that you signed up for it or that you pay a monthly subscription fee for special privileges and want to keep them all to yourself
What it does mean…
All “white privilege” means is that the color of my skin hasn’t made my life harder.

That’s it.

White privilege means if I was in a 100-meter race, I would start at the starting line, but my black friend would start 50 meters behind me.

White privilege means if a cashier thought I was trying to pass a counterfeit bill and called the police, I know I wouldn’t end up dead. When I go for a run through my neighborhood, I don’t have to wear my college gear to prove that I’m an “upstanding citizen”. I don’t have to take children or dogs with me to appear less threatening. I. Just. Run. [Please check out this post, by the way.] I didn’t sign up for it or ask for it. I was just born with it. Just like my snot green eyes and my stumpy fingers.

Sure, there are dangers that I face as a human with lady parts. But those dangers don’t come from the amount of melanin produced by my body.

I hope both of these explanations helped! I know that they are oversimplified and there’s a very large chance that I misspoke somewhere in those ramblings. But I’m learning right along with you guys and hoping to do better, be better. Together, we can build a safer society. Together, we can all stand at the same starting line. I LOVE YOUR FACES! ❤️