Racial Justice is More Important than your Brand’s Aesthetic.

If you’re a small business owner and you’re not speaking up about the current injustices in the world because you’re afraid, stressed, or skeptical...THIS IS FOR YOU.

“But, what if my business NEVER talks about ANY politically charged issues?”

“What if people misinterpret my intentions and twist my words?”

“I’m just waiting until I have the perfect thing to say.”

“It just doesn’t fit my business’ personality and the way we have been doing things.”

If any of the above sound like you, you are in good company. Navigating race and racism is a complicated topic, there is absolutely no doubt about it. But do you know what else?

You SHOULD do the hard work that comes with educating, researching, and talking about systemic injustices in America and the world. Because the world needs you and your business to show up for those who need us, when they need us.

All lives can’t matter until black lives matter.

So regardless of the color of your skin,

We need your support.

We need you standing in solidarity with those who have been oppressed by systemic oppression in the realms of healthcare, housing, education, economics, and beyond.

We need you using your platform to amplify the voices of those who haven’t been passed the microphone in far, far too long.

Remember: If it’s comfortable and easy, it doesn’t count as courage.

Being courageous often means being terrified, knees shaking, voice quivering and DOING IT ANYWAY.

Because NEWS FLASH: you will never have the perfect thing to say because perfect doesn’t exist. You will never be able to ensure that everyone understands the purity of your intentions. You will never find a way to infuse justice and the required difficult conversations to achieve it until you try.

You will regret what you didn’t say before you regret what you did. Showing up imperfectly is always better than not showing up at all or turning a blind eye. (Remember: Choosing not to share IS your privilege.)

I’m not sitting here and telling you to discuss your views on foreign policy with your instagram audience who is following you for your handmade mittens.

I’m not sitting here and asking you to share your views on the outcome of the 2016 election in your Facebook group with other entrepreneurs.

What I am asking, urging, begging you to do is to use your voice, your online platforms, and your business to SPEAK UP for matters of justice, not matters of opinion.

Regardless of how you’ve done things in the past, regardless of if you say the perfect thing, regardless of your brand’s aesthetic.

Because JUSTICE is always, always, always on brand.

Even if it’s messy and imperfect. Even if you’re criticized. Even if it doesn’t fit into your 3 month marketing plan.

Want to help, learn, and discover more about how you can support the Black Lives Matter movement in your business and beyond?

This article lists 77 black-owned businesses to support

This article provides anti-racism resources for white people

Even more important than any resources I can share through a link is listening to the voices and experiences of black people in your community. Hold space for them. Talk to them. Ask them about their experience. Just remember, it’s not their job to educate us on the systemic racism that white people are responsible for creating and upholding...that’s where some good ol' self-education comes in. ;)