Partners in Fire has always been about lifting everyone up and bringing to light policies that work to prevent others from achieving financial independence. In that vein, we’ve written about poverty traps, stagnant wages, family values, UBI, healthcare, and a ton of other policies that work to keep people poor. We’ve also written about gender issues that work to keep women trapped in poverty and subservience.
But there’s one huge elephant in this room, something that we haven’t overtly tackled, and that’s race. The main reason I’ve avoided writing about the socioeconomic impacts of race relations is that I don’t feel like it’s my story to tell. As a white woman, I can clearly understand that race plays a huge role in financial well-being. I can see it: the redlining, the low wages, the high arrest and incarceration rates, the discrimination in schools, the endless list of racist policies and practices. You’d have to be willfully ignorant to not see that this happens every day.
But I don’t have to live it every day. By the privilege of my skin color and circumstances of my birth, it’s something that I don’t have to deal with on a daily basis. So why should I be the one telling the story? There are so many voices out there of POC who actually live this every day – their voices are the ones that matter here – not mine.
So instead of reading my take on this situation, check out these blogs and podcasts by people of color that tell their stories:
Listen to Their Voices
- Journey To Launch: Episode 158- Black Lives Matter & The Black Tax: The Cost of Being Black in America w/ Shawn Rochester
- Rich and Regular: When She Said Colorism We Heard Wealth
- A Purple Life: Micro-Aggressions and Giving Up on My Favorite Company
- Money the Wright Way: Pay Inequality is Still a Thing
- Michelle is Money Hungry: A Candid Conversation About Race in America
- Paychecks and Balances: Real Talk
- Peerless Money: Growing up in the Ghetto: From the Projects to Home Ownership
- My Debt Epiphany: This Has to Be Said
- Hope and Cents: Say Their Names
This list isn’t all inclusive in any way. You can find more blogs and podcasts published by People of Color here.
Not All Recent
Maybe you noticed that not all of these posts are in regards to what’s happening right now. That’s because this has been going on far longer than you’d like to believe. These protests aren’t just about George Floyd, they are about a system of oppression that has been in place for hundreds of years. Peruse these blogs, listen to these stories, and get an idea of what has been happening in this country since it’s founding.
I do wish I had addressed this sooner. I wish I had reached out to my blogging friends of color, and asked them to write a guest post on the topic before this entire situation escalated into what it is, because it’s always been there, bubbling beneath the surface. Unfortunately, I didn’t do that, and I apologize for it. In the future, I will make sure I do.
Another thing you can do to help is donate. Check out this awesome resource that lists a plethora of organizations that you can donate to. They are even sorted by state to make it easier for you to find local places.
I hate what’s going on around the country, and I wish I could do more. This post came about because I really wanted to speak out but I wasn’t asked to, and I don’t think adding my outrage sends the message I really want to send.
To be honest, I’m not even sure what that message is. I really just hope that all my present and future readers, your families, and the people you care about look after each other. And please, if you don’t have someone in your life who takes time to listen, just let me know. I will take that time. I will listen.
Is there more I can do? I don’t know, but I will continue to try – to learn and to grow. I remind myself to push more positivity and respect into the world every day. Hopefully it reaches you guys when you need it. Pass it along for me will you? I don’t have much confidence in the abilities of organizations to solve the worst of our nation’s problems. In this and other things, We the People have the greater power for change, and we are seeing it in the unity of the protests every day.
There are people in powerful positions who are terrified by that reality, but it’s our time to fix things; think about that every time the TV tells you otherwise, every time someone assures the public they’re doing everything they can, or that they have situations under control. Saying it doesn’t make it true. Actions speak louder than words, and we need to force those in power to act.
Things will get better, even though the past is ever an open wound. But it has to come from us. Listen to the voices of the people around you. Speak up for those who are oppressed. Recognize the bias in yourself, and examine the reasons why you vote for the policies you vote for. It’s our time to change things – but it starts with us.
Melanie launched Partners in Fire in 2017 to document her quest for financial independence with a mix of finance, fun, and solving the world’s problems. She’s self educated in personal finance and passionate about fighting systematic problems that prevent others from achieving their own financial goals. She also loves travel, anthropology, gaming and her cats.