Things You Need To Understand #9 – You Don’t Get A Cookie
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When a person or group does something to address the biases and imbalances in our culture, whether it be on a grand scale, in their own sphere of influence, or in themselves, this is a good thing. But doing so isn’t cause for celebration, congratulations, or a party. Why? Because it’s basic human decency. And people shouldn’t be over-praised for doing something they should have been doing in the first place. That leads to them doing the right thing for the wrong reasons — personal or professional accolades. i.e.: Cookies.
This is not to say that people won’t notice when you’re being basically decent. Sadly, in our society, those who do the right thing as regards bias, prejudice, sexism, racism, etc. stand out because so many others around them aren’t doing the right thing. Still and all, your goal should not be to call attention to yourself but to the injustice that you’re now fighting against.
Does that mean you can’t make apologies and state your new intentions? No. But it does mean that you should be prepared for people to not fully care until you start doing instead of talking about doing. Is it going to be uncomfortable for you for a while? Yes. Will you just have to suck it up, because anti-racist and anti-sexist work is more important than your hurt at not being given a cookie? Yes.