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Black People Don't Owe You....

A month or so ago I ran across an insightful article written by a black woman by the name of Brittany J. Harris titled:

“A Point of View: 5 Things Black People Don’t Owe While Coping with Being Black in America” which prompted the design of this statement collection. In this article she speaks about the disproportionate impact of the Global Pandemic on Black communities, the previous presidential administration and the consecutive instances of police brutality & violence against blacks. Oh, I can’t forget her mention of the day-to-day harm, disrespect and discrimination caused by ‘Karen’s’ in the workplace and/or in public places such as grocery stores and sometimes in our own neighborhoods.

She says: “As Black people experience this moment in time, and more specifically navigate race-based trauma, and collectively cope with being Black in America, I would like to offer some advice for leaders, white people, and other non-Black people seeking to be allies, advocates, champions…or just supportive during this time.”

Here are five things leaders, white people, and other non-Black allies should not expect from Black people as we cope with being Black in America — put differently, these are not things we inherently owe:


1) Immediate Grace and Forgiveness

2) Finding Common Ground

3) Uncompensated Sharing of Experiences and Feelings

4) More Time and Patience

5) Respectability


As Black people work through this moment in time, we do not owe (though we may choose to offer) grace and forgiveness, common ground, uncompensated sharing of our experiences and truths, time and patience, and respectability

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