See something, say something is a mantra that many are familiar with. It actually has it’s roots in the NYC transit system. It has been used by a number of other agencies over the years and is basically a simple way for us adults to teach littles how to handle life.
If you see something, say something. Most times when we hear or read it our mind jumps to it meaning interrupt or report bad or illegal behavior. I’m going to challenge you though to go beyond that. I am going to challenge you to see something and say something in every area of your life. If you see someone do, be or say something good, better or best, I want you to say something. Don’t wait for the person to die to give them their flowers. Let us amplify good and kindness today.
If you see something where a person makes a mistake, don’t just say something but take responsibility in helping them understand why it is a mistake. Help them correct the mistake. Many of us have to make mistakes to learn. The thing is, if we are not called out on those mistakes then we will never learn that they are wrong and need correction.
Let us keep reminding our littles if they see something that they should say something. They should never allow another person to treat or speak to them in a way that makes them feel threatened or inferior. And that includes us adults! They should have the platform to express their feelings.
They should also be taught that expressing your stance comes with responsibility. It means considering the language you use. It means realizing that your words have power. It means understanding that your words might not be understood.
There is a lot going on in our world right now. We are still dealing with COVID-19, and I fear we are on the cusp of a nasty second wave. We are also finally acknowledging that there is a disease in this country that has been affecting America since its first days. Racism is real.
This is the first month in a while that I had my editorial calendar set and I promise that this post was not originally on it but as I sit in my apartment watching the news and finding ways to explain to my child what is going on I am challenging you to say something because if you don’t see what is going on and understand that it is long overdue then I need to say something. You are living a privileged life.
I’ve been on social media way too much these days and I see parents complaining that Nickelodeon has made PSAs around the unrest that is happening due to the injustices being faced in this country. Many of these parents are upset that their young children are being shown the following:
I’m saying something. I want to know why this upsets parents. Even the other one with the black screen saying I Can’t Breathe. Instead of being mad that your child might be confused or scared by the sound of breathing, sit, and have a conversation with them. And, I am open to hearing how the PSA incites fear.
Do you know what it is like to have to sit your young, beautiful, brilliant child down and explain to that child that the world will be cruel to him and her at some point because of the color of their skin? Do you know how difficult it is to have discussions with your children about how police are there to protect the community BUT they still need to proceed with extra caution and extra rules when interacting with an officer because the officer might make assumptions based on their skin color?
If you don’t know those difficulties then consider yourself privileged. If you have not trained your son not to wear his hood in public consider yourself privileged. I’m not typing any of this as an attack. I’m simply seeing something and saying something.
I have seen people rage against the damage done to businesses but not the damage done to people. We live in an amazing time. Anything that we want to learn is literally at our fingertips. I’m challenging you. If you are not familiar with terms like systemic racism and redlining start there. If you didn’t see many black squares on your Instagram feed yesterday during #BlackoutTuesday then I challenge you to diversify your feed. And when I say diversify your feed, I’m not just talking about including faces of Color on your feed (even though you definitely should) but people that have different perspectives on life.
I have friends and family members that don’t see things the way I do. That’s part of what makes this world great. I enjoy learning from their perspective and sharing mine. The one thing though that we do all agree upon is that we all should be treated fairly.
I don’t have the answers to how to make this country equitable. And that’s another thing you should research if you aren’t familiar, equality v equity. I want to live in an equitable space. I want us all to start with the same opportunities and options and be able to run the same space. If you have to climb a tree and swim a lake to get to the finish line and I only have to run straight then even if the race is an equal distance it is not equitable.