There is a peculiar kind of defensiveness
That comes when someone suggests that you are a part of the problem.
A sense of disbelief that anyone would think that lowly of you
And would even hint at the fact
That you are somehow participating in unsavory things like
Systemic racism, inequality and sexism.
Its a sort of unwanted stigma
That threatens the idea we have of ourselves
As decent human beings.
We compare ourselves to blatant bigots and misogynists
And we argue for our own innocence
Claiming that had we been alive when such terrible acts were being committed
We would have spoken up.
So who, then, is responsible for the current disparities?
If we all claim to no longer hold these discriminatory ideas
Why are we not living in an equal society?
Someone isn’t owning up to their part of the problem.
And the key lies in that statement right there.
No one entity can be responsible for such widely held disparities
And so the argument is not intended to lay all the blame on anyone
But rather it is point out that we are so resistant to
Acknowledging ourselves as being just a part of the problem.
Injustice needs silent players to thrive,
People who abstain from the critical conversation or
Who say nothing for or against what is going on
But rather actively fold their arms, turn their eyes aside
And come up with smart ideas about what’s going on
Yet never engaging themselves in the process of change.
Yet we claim our innocence.
The poverty, inequality, racism and sexism of our generation is on us.
We are not absolved from our part in it,
Our hands are not clean
And if we are honest, our consciences are just bleached over
And not really clean,
Because as long as we shrug our shoulders
And point fingers
We are not only denying being a part of the problem
But ironically we are are an essential part of it.