Dear Paoli Family,
In these days of being isolated, we long for the time to be back together. However, before we get back together, we encourage us to be “Better When We're Back Together.” For even before this pandemic, when groups across our nation and the world gathered together, there was often inequity in the gatherings along lines of race. This inequity is a part of our history as a people that we cannot hide, and to ignore is to go against the will of Christ which is “to unite all things in him” (Ephesians 1:10).
During this time of isolation, you are invited to join us in a 21-day race equity challenge. In doing so you will be exposed to voices and perspectives different than your own through articles, videos, and podcasts. Each day you will choose one way of engagement and reflect in a journal. At the end of the challenge, we will gather together to share our reflections.
Join Paoli Presbyterian as we journey together to learn more about issues of race and racism in this country and how we can be a force for antiracism in our community and world. (We borrow this 21-Day Race Equity Challenge from friends at the Myers Park Presbyterian Church in Charlotte, N.C.)
We hope you’ll join us.
Jonathan Mikesell and Becca Bruner
Pick one of the resources listed every day for 21 days.
Diversify your understanding by doing some of each.
Track and reflect by using the planning tool below.
Share your reflections at the end of the challenge.
Pray for the places you are challenged and for those you are learning about whose lives may be different than yours.
Devotional by Efrem Smith, Co-Pastor of Bayside Church Midtown and Co-owner of Influential LLC. (17 minutes)
Lecture by Willie Jennings, American theologian, known for his contributions on liberation theologies, cultural identities, and theological anthropology. He is currently an associate professor of systematic theology and Africana studies at Yale University. (30 minutes)
Just Mercy, from the director Destin Daniel Cretton tells the true story of Bryan Stevenson (Michael B. Jordan), a civil-rights attorney who works to defend Walter McMillian (Jamie Foxx), who was wrongfully convicted of murder. In response to current events, Warner Bros. is offering free streaming rentals in June through almost all digital movie services in the US. Film discussion guide here. (2 hours 18 minutes)
This is Us, Dr. Eddie Glaude explains why blaming current racial tensions on Donald Trump misses the point. (3 minutes)
Confronting ‘intergroup anxiety’: Can you try too hard to be fair? Explores why we may get tongue tied and blunder when we encounter people from groups unfamiliar to us. (5 minutes)
CBS News Analysis: 50 states, 50 different ways of teaching America’s past, Ibram X. Kendi reviews current history curriculum production and use across the U.S. (5 minutes)
The Disturbing History of the Suburbs, An “Adam Ruins Everything” episode that quickly and humorously educates how redlining came to be. (6 minutes)
What Kind of Asian Are You? Humorous two minute YouTube video that illustrates the utter silliness of the way many white Americans interact with Asian Americans. (2 minutes)
Birth of a White Nation, Keynote speech by legal scholar Jacqueline Battalora, offers a blow-by-blow description of the moment the idea of, and word for, “white” people entered U.S. legal code. (36 minutes)
13th, Netflix documentary by Ava DuVernay about the connection between US Slavery and the present day mass incarceration system. (1 hour, 40 minutes)
How to overcome our biases? Walk boldly toward them, TED Talk by Vernā Myers, encourages work vigorously to counter balance bias by connecting with and learning about and from the groups we fear. (19 minutes)
The danger of a single story, TED Talk by Chimamanda Adiche, offers insight to the phenomenon of using small bits of information to imagine who a person is. (18 minutes)
How to deconstruct racism, one headline at a time, TED Talk by Baratunde Thurston that explores patterns revealing our racist framing, language, and behaviors. (10 minutes)
Indigenous People React to Indigenous Representation in Film And TV, Conversation with a diverse range of Indigenous people by FBE about media depictions of Indigenous people, Columbus day, and Indigenous identity. (15 minutes)
What Being Hispanic and Latinx Means in the United States, Fernanda Ponce shares what she’s learning about the misunderstanding and related mistreatment of the incredibly diverse ethnic category people in U.S. call Hispanic. (12 minutes)
Tyler Merrit Project: Before You Call (3 minutes)
The Powerful Witness of Solidarity, by Dr. Brenda Salter McNeil
21 Racial Microaggressions You Hear on a Daily Basis, by Heben Nigatu
Climbing the White Escalator, by Betsy Leondar-Wright
Explaining White Privilege To A Broke White Person, by Gina Crosley-Corcoran
Guide to Allyship, Created by Amélie Lamont
It’s Not Just the South: Here’s How Everyone Can Resist White Supremacy, by Sarah van Gelder
Making America White Again, by Toni Morrison
Understanding the Racial Wealth Gap, by Amy Traub, Laura Sullivan, Tatjana
Mescheded, & Tom Shapiro
What White Children Need to Know About Race, by Ali MIchael and Elenora Bartoli
White Privilege: Unpacking the Invisible Knapsack, by Peggy McIntosh
My President Was Black, by Ta-Nehisi Coates
Caught Up In God, by Willie James Jennings
Who Gets to Be Afraid in America?, by Ibram X Kendi
by Peter Rollins and Michael Gungor (49 mins)
Andre Henry, Propaganda, and Nikki Blak join William Matthews (39 mins)
with Andre-Henry and William Matthews (71 mins)
Code Switch, hosted by journalists Gene Demby and Shereen Marisol Meraji
Black Like Me, host Dr. Alex Gee
Scene on Radio – Seeing White Series, host John Biewen and collaborator Chenjerai Kumanyika
TED Radio Hour – Mary Bassett: How Does Racism Affect Your Health? host Guy Raz speaks with Dr. Mary T. Bassett, Director of the FXB Center for Health and Human Rights at Harvard University
Here & Now – Without Slavery, Would The U.S. Be The Leading Economic Power? host Jeremy Hobson and author Edward Baptist
NPR Morning Edition – You Cannot Divorce Race From Immigration journalist Rachel Martin talks to Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Jose Antonio Vargas
Pod Save the People, Activism. Social Justice. Culture. Politics. On Pod Save the People, organizer and activist DeRay Mckesson
Test Your Awareness: Do The Test, This video shows us the importance of paying attention, and how much more we see when we are looking for particular things around us.
Use each question below separately as one day’s challenge.
Who is and is not represented in ads?
What are the last five books you read? What is the racial mix of the authors?
What is the racial mix of the main characters in your favorite TV shows? Movies?
Who is filling what kinds of jobs/social roles in your world? Can you correlate any of this to racial identity?