A Happy New Year’s Resolution
For a few years now, I’ve had an Economic Redress policy at Perennial Medicine. I do this in part because it feels good to stand behind what I believe in, but also because I want to introduce the Economic Redress concept to my community—especially to other anti-racist white people who often wonder what they can actually do to help end racism.
What is Economic Redress? It is an attempt to redress the economic aspects of racial injustice upon which this country was founded, by disrupting and re-patterning the way that our resources are currently being distributed.
As a white-bodied person in America, I am aware of my economic privilege in comparison with people who have darker skin than my own. However, the economic prosperity of America has been most brutally wrested at the direct expense of First Nation people who faced genocide as their land was stolen, and African American people who were enslaved.
Hear me clearly when I say that nothing can ever “repay” the injury of the slaughtered villages, stolen land, and the enslavement of stolen people. Not only attempts at justice but also deep healing will be required. However, the white people among us can join together to start redistributing the relative wealth that does not really belong to us.
Here at Perennial Medicine, many resources are free for First Nation and African American people [see here for details], as an acknowledgment of how much they have “given” to America’s prosperity. What I’m wondering is, what if all anti-racist white people took a moment to evaluate what they might be able to contribute to shifting these very old patterns?
Hey, white people! If you’d like to offer goods or services of any kind or any value as an economic redress, please let me know. I would love to include you on my new and growing Economic Redress Resource List.
It’s truly ok to start small because we need to start somewhere. How would you like to begin?
Happy New Year to us all, as we embrace anew what it means to be human together.
Do you have thoughts that you’d like to share? Join the conversation on the Perennial Medicine Listserv.