Yesterday, I had the honor of listening to Michele Norris speak in person at a wonderful Women’s Forum. If you do not know who she is, she is an award-winning journalist and author and was the first African-American female to host a series on National Public Radio (NPR); she formally hosted NPR’s All Things Considered. On top of all that, she is an absolute delight and very inspiring. Ms. Norris has moved on to become the founder of The Race Card Project. The Race Card Project urges people to tell their stories about race and identity in six (6) little words. It is an honest and concise way to express one’s observations, questions, experiences, thoughts, dreams, and everything in between. They can be as funny, lighthearted, or gut-wrenching as you want, it is a judgement-free zone.
As a group, we participated in the activity. A group of 600 women, of different races, ethnicity, and socioeconomic statuses, chattered about enthusiastically, or thoroughly confused, on how to share their stories. One thing I learned is, people do not know how to listen to directions, but I digress.
The six words I wrote were:
“Yes, we do tip. You’re Welcome!”
I thought it was funny and lighthearted, but true. However, I could not stop there. I thought I would share the “stories” I scribbled in my notebook.
- I will scream ‘Black Lives Matter’
- Will my death make the news?
- Not as straight as I seem.
- Are you sure you’re Puerto Rican?
- If only you straightened your hair.
- Your boyfriend looks like a terrorist.
- You’re too funny to be anxious.
- Wow, you are so well spoken.
- Today, all lives do not matter.
- The system makes me very angry.
- Don’t use me for target practice.
- I’m not an angry black woman.
I would suggest visiting the website (https://theracecardproject.com/), it is definitely eye-opening and thought-provoking. Maybe you will feel inclined to share your own story.