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Why I Still Talk to White People About Racism

Jul 31, 2020 05:32PM ● By Erec Smith

In early July, 2020, Associate Professor at York College of Pennsylvania, Erec Smith, had an opinion piece published in the national weekly magazine, Newsweek.

Erec Smith is an Associate Professor of Rhetoric and Composition at York College of Pennsylvania.  He earned his Ph.D. English from the University of Illinois at Chicago, with a concentration in Language, Literacy and Rhetoric. His M.A English is also from the University of Illinois at Chicago, and his B.A. English, cum laude and Honors, was earned at Ursinus College.

Professor Smith is an experienced teacher, researcher and published author.

He is a black man in America in 2020 and his opinion piece in Newsweek is rhetorically written as if it is for a black audience – yet it is keenly relevant for white readers, as the author notes the interest expressed by many white people to listen, reflect, and “do their best to end racism and white supremacy altogether.”

While the article’s rhetoric is aimed at convincing black individuals to stay engaged and take advantage of the opportunity at hand for further dialogue, Dr. Smith is extending his open hand to all of us, black and white, to engage in the difficult conversations that will lead to healing and provide hope for achieving racial equality and equity sooner, rather than later in our country.

A dialogue is a two-way conversation. If you’re white or black, reach out and take hold of Erec Smith’s extended hand by reading this article. Then extend your hand to others, form a circle, and sit and have some difficult conversations with an open heart.







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