Episode 98: Why Do You Have To Make It A Race Thing?
Over the last three episodes of Something Positive for Positive People, there have been experiences shared by black people. Unintentionally, they each expand further on the previous one. I was met with some feedback when sharing the descriptions of these episodes that raised a huge concern for me. The comments made were along the lines of, “what’s race got to do with this?” – even after similar experiences were publicly validated in the comments of the posts.
It’s very concerning that people who can choose to disconnect from racial issues openly invalidate the experiences of different races. We hear the story of the gay black man who was treated unfairly by the medical staff when he sought testing and treatment for an STI he’d been exposed to in episode 95. We hear how healing sexual trauma for black people looks different than it does for non-black people on episode 96. On Episode 97 we get the experience of a black woman who grew up in the dysfunction of an oppressed community where there was no honest, comprehensive sex ed, and the awful things happening there seen as normal.
Then we have episode 98 released today where we hear from a sex educator who faces challenges in these communities to bring in the necessary resources to support change through comprehensive, honest, sex ed. We hear how race does play a role, in addition to how the system of oppression is upheld by an invalidation of experiences black people and other oppressed communities face in this space.
Bringing the lessons from these episodes full circle, there needs to be openness, honesty, resources and education in these spaces. We cannot deny any longer that our youth are sexually active. Hiding the truth about sex being pleasurable is endangering our youth far more than just empowering them with the truth can ever be. I do not have children, but I understand that if a little discomfort on my end is all it takes to make my black children more safe, then I’m going to familiarize myself with that discomfort as long as it takes.
At this point it can’t be about our ego, or fearing loss of control over our children. There is too much information so easily accessible for us to foolishly believe that our children won’t find it. When they do, they’ll be protected by truth and feel safe coming to trusted sources for guidance, or they’ll be lured into false, unethical situations due to their vulnerability to deception. Then adopt that as their normal and keep that away from the people who can point this out before it goes from being a damaging behavior to a belief.
If you choose not to acknowledge that race carries weight in sexuality conversations, please use your privilege to also choose to inform yourself by listening to the podcast episodes referenced in this article and see related information below.