Luvvie Ajayi

Calling Out Casual Racism

If there's anything that really bothers an Episcopalian, it's the possibility that we're being rude (and yes, I would include using the wrong fork in this category!). So when it comes to calling out our friends and family when we see them engaging in microagression, we find ourselves in a bind: do we violate our "never criticize another person in public" policy or do we let the moment pass in silence, thereby appearing to condone the behavior?

What's microagression, you ask? Microagression is a casual, indirect, and sometimes unintentional act of discrimination. Because microagression often is practiced through condescension, the perpetrator may intend to be kind. That makes calling out the microagressor that much more difficult. Luvvie Ajayi addresses microagression in the Ted Ideas Interview, "Why We Need to Call Out Casual Racism."

In reading Ajayi's interview, I am reminded that we speak of Jesus the one who for our sake was made to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God. Perhaps this Lent, we likewise need to practice becoming "rude" so as to participate in the greater courtesy of God.