Very White Guy

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Would you ever get your full name legally changed ? If so what would you change it to ?

I don't think I would change my name - I've had the same name for 40 years and it would seem weird changing it...

No questiOn just wanted to say your a really cool dude I really fuck with your way of thinking and personality


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What got you so involved with rights of persons of color as a white guy?

My wife is black & so are many of my family members so I am personally passionate about the #BlackLivesMatter movement
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At what did you become socially aware?

I assume you meant at what age...I would say my mom did a good job raising us but certainly in college

What motivates you to work hard?

RedHeadedAnastasia’s Profile PhotoAnastasia Murphy
I've been told that I'm not sufficiently motivated by financial gain (in a personality inventory for employment). I like the satisfaction of completing what I set out to do. So I guess I'm sort of motivated by my own desire to succeed ...or avoid failure.
Liked by: Teresa B-W

Who do you sometimes compare yourself to?

RedHeadedAnastasia’s Profile PhotoAnastasia Murphy
I'm not sure. I don't "think" I compare myself to anyone per se. I look up to a few different people for different reasons. If I had to pick one id say my moms - that's my mom & my mother in law. They're the best

What's the last book you read?

An amazing book. Walter Mosley's Rose Gold - the latest in the Easy Rawlins Mystery series.

What was your first job?

RedHeadedAnastasia’s Profile PhotoAnastasia Murphy
I've worked more than 30 jobs in my life & the first one where I had social security withheld was working at Bresler's 33 flavors ice cream parlor earning $3.15/hour

Do you remember your first real moment of clarity regarding race and privilege?

RedHeadedAnastasia’s Profile PhotoAnastasia Murphy
Wow there's been so many incremental steps along the way. My biggest was in a college course in my minor (social work) & a discussion of Peggy Macintosh backpack of invisible privilege. That same day (DONT DO THIS) I asked my black suitemate a host of questions. I really put him on the spot inappropriately by making him answer for all black people. I asked about miss black America pageant, wearing symbols of Africa and all sorts of dumb white shit. But he listened, he obliged my ignorance & he really educated me. I can remember it like it was yesterday.
I wish he & I could connect again someday. I'd thank him & apologize for my ignorance.

What determines your personal choices and would you agree that others should use the same criteria?

My personal choices are framed by my experiences & reinforcement history which is unique to me but most people make choices in part based on their own reinforcement history.

How do you go about influencing someone to accept your ideas?

I'm not so sure I convince anyone. I just stand for what I believe in and I make those beliefs well known.
"On this topic I will not equivocate...I will be heard" - William Lloyd Garrison
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I am wondering what you think about Whites intentionally permeating white spaces as a way to combat racism (rather than waiting for an issue to present itself. Can we accomplish this and if so how can it be done despite sometimes being the sole voice to challenge white supremacy?

I am all for it. I think white people need to take responsibility specifically for educating our fellow white citizens. As a white male with privilege, rather than try to "eliminate" my privilege, I think it is "better" to leverage that privilege in space/places where I may have access to that others do not. PTA meetings, my employment, city planning, country clubs, churches and more. Its unfortunately a reality that the message is often perceived differently based on the messenger. Because of supremacy, implicit bias and patriarchy white males are often afforded more latitude & "authority" despite the message being no different than those delivered previously by countless people (in particular women) of color.
I think there are a myriad of ways to do this - all depends on your comfort level & position. You can ask questions about diversity hiring practices, and opportunities for marginalized persons in your work environment. You could find subtle ways like putting up #BlackLivesMatter sign on your computer or home (invite a dialog). You could question city officials about practices and procedures to ensure inclusiveness at planning meetings.
I have been desiring to replicate the effectiveness of Black Brunch, but conducted by white people in white spaces. I think a great analogous opportunity would be for white people to disrupt primarily white community sporting events. Think #RacismIsNotAGame where white activists stop a HS soccer game for 4.5 minutes & discuss specifics like the schools history text books in use, the diversity in the community, staffing and more. I have discussed this with white people that are "in alignment" with #BlackLivesMatter but so far none are willing to take this somewhat more confrontational approach. I see how successful Black Brunch has been - and when every white person I ask to join me in this action bulges their eyes and says "whoa...I'm not sure about that" - that tells me it is the perfect action. If you embark on this type of action please let me know.
I think whatever you do, be conscious, informed & speak truth to power. Do not equivocate, be heard.
P.S. Any white folks in the suburbs of Philly (New Jersey) that want to take on this type of action please DM me

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Liked by: Teresa B-W

What are your honest thoughts/opinions about Ferguson Alternative Spring Break. I'm trying to get some input from different people before spending the money for a plane ticket

I apologize, I really wanted to provide you with more insight - but I am woefully uninformed about Ferguson ASB and do not feel qualified to offer you "my honest opinion". I would suggest reaching out to some folks that are a bit closer to ASB. I did receive these articles from some followers that may be of value.
Without knowing much (anything really) about the organizers, agenda etc - I will say that the idea/concept is very intriguing and interesting. I know many people that have completed similar "alternative" spring breaks for Habitat for humanity and other groups - they found the experience incredibly enriching & rewarding - certainly more so than getting hammered at Senor Frogs.

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As a business owner and spokesperson I am struggling with my personal convictions and the job requirement of keeping my mouth shut. Do you perceive any way a business person can participate in social justice without drawing racist scrutiny of their business & partners?

This ones tough for me as I'm fortunate to work for a great company/employer and I work from my home. I don't have the same impediments you've described.
I've worked on a variety of projects where some really valuable support has come from people in situations like yours. A graphic designer donated their time/skills, a lawyer donated their office space. I'm not sure what your business is, but perhaps there's a way to provide your skill/expertise to groups/organizations supporting the black lives matter movement. Find a way to contribute in anyway that you can. You can even just bringing pizza or food to meetings or coffee to protesters anonymously. Often these small gestures that show you're aware & care & thinking of the movement can have more impact than you'd think.
You can also talk discretely with people one on one and gauge their receptiveness & try to engage in dialog. You can dispel or stop negative narratives & discussions with a simple "I don't agree" and leave it at that. You might be able to inquire about your company/industries employment practices and push to have more minority representation.
I guess what I mean to say is, there are many ways to support the movement & for a variety of reasons one or more activities might not be right for you - that's ok. Find those activities where you can participate and concentrate on those activities as best you can.
Thanks for asking & thanks for anything you may be able to do to support the black lives matter movement.

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Liked by: Teresa B-W

Which famous person from the past would you most like to meet?

My wife's grandmother Theresa. I never got to meet her an show her how much I love her granddaughter.
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Language: English