“No justice, no peace. Know justice, know peace.”
That common phrase has been shouted from the rooftops and exclaimed on the streets from activists, protestors and others looking for some answers from the latest crime that afflicted someone with melanated skin who looks like them.
On Monday, January 17, MLK Day is celebrated in the Black community and beyond as many reflect back on what he did with the Civil Rights movement and look forward to what is still possible.
As many recognize the continually needed healing of Blackness itself after King’s tragic death, so many more are still scratching their heads at how equality and equity is still not actualized yet for Black people, even in 2022.
How do we continue though? When decades after his death so many injustices and oppressive acts against Black people have raged on and fueled a fire within many to seek revenge in some way, shape or form?
How do Black people exactly fight for their rights, still, while looking for healing in this racist-tinged world full of people who don’t like Black folks just because of their skin color? It’s no simple answer but here is a start: learn to heal the hurt first, according to www.healthline.com.
Because racism isn’t a one-and-done type of thing, Black people face racism in many ways that can, eventually, build up into harmful side effects like lashing out. The very palpable hurt should be released in healthy ways below.
Validate Black People’s Experiences
When a Black person faces racism or racist experiences, find ways to heal from that through different support services whether it be with a circle of friends, family, the church, or working with counselors.
Celebrate the Beauty of Blackness
Black is always beautiful and finding ways to honor that blackness is important every day of the year, and not only on MLK Day.
Don’t Back up Racist Behavior with Your Dollars
Find out more about the companies you purchase from – learn what organizations and causes they support and make sure that they align with your values. If not, go elsewhere. Support businesses, Black-owned or others, that are committed to racial equality and justice.
This helps Black people become empowered knowing that your money does not ultimately help finance the systems and people who are intent on killing Black people, and gives allies the information they need to support equality.
Black Mental Health Matters
When a wrong is acknowledged, don’t let it slide — it can be fixed in a nonviolent way. As people become more knowledgeable of racial injustice (especially through corporate-backed Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion work) more Black people can hold people’s feet to the fire.
However, beyond diversity and inclusion training, Black people require psychosocial support as they work through trauma, according to the article. The proper guidance of Black mental health practitioners is essential to healing.
“So is having the space to care for our mental health on a day-to-day basis. We ask a lot of ourselves. We can support each other by normalizing taking care of our individual and collective mental health,” according to the article.
The pandemic is still raging; inequalities and injustices are still happening. When able, rest and rest well and reflect on something else.
“It’s a part of self-care but also a critical component of community care. We automatically associate rest and relaxation with holidays and days of observance,” according to the article. But we need to make rest a part of everyday life. “Activism can easily take the place of hobbies and leisure, so rest must become an intentional practice.”