Blog Index

Norman Rockwell's The Golden Rule
Norman Rockwell’s The Golden Rule

The History of Now

If I asked you to tell me your history, what would you tell me? Would you tell me about your family, growing up, and adventures and misadventures? Or would you go deeper? In the picture is my great grandmother. I am the blonde-headed kid with my back to her, crying. I’m crying because I do … Continue reading “The History of Now”

Misguided Assumptions

Deconstructing racism and disassembling systemic barriers requires challenging a worldview system that has privileged whiteness and, in my case, interrogating my white-skinned assumptions.

Badge of Shame

Even as I look at my white world through my white eyes I see the disparity in treatment between white and black and white and brown by law enforcement. As enlightened as I try to be, my truth of my white self still grapples with categorically judging an entire branch of law enforcement based upon … Continue reading “Badge of Shame”

(Dis)Trusted Servant

I’m Christian. I go to Church. But I do not trust the Christian Church. I’ve got over 40 years of reasons why. The psychological condemnation by the Christian Church I received as a gay man has caused a deep-seated distrust of the institution. But I go to church to worship, not to worry. How does … Continue reading “(Dis)Trusted Servant”

Health Check – An urgent message for young black men and women

Disparities in health between ethnicities is not a new phenomenon, it is as old as the enslavement of black, brown, and indigenous bodies. What some may not know is white American doctors were just as culpable in performing experiments upon enslaved bodies as the Nazis were upon Jewish bodies (Washington, 2006).  The emerging field of … Continue reading “Health Check – An urgent message for young black men and women”

What does it mean to be Antiracist?

“What do Black People need saving from?” (asked by a Black seminary professor during a white fragility discussion group that I co-facilitate) We were talking about DiAngelo’s (2018) analysis of the movie, The Blind Side (Hancock, 2009), in response to a question on white people’s motives when helping Black people. Often, even though white people … Continue reading “What does it mean to be Antiracist?”

What’s in a Name?

… researchers at the University of Chicago conducted a large study in which they responded to over 1,300 help-wanted ads in Boston and Chicago newspapers. They sent out close to 5,000 resumes to a range of employers in both the public and private sectors. The qualifications on the resumes were consistent, but the researchers randomly … Continue reading “What’s in a Name?”

Four More Years

No, I am not talking about four more years of the 45th President of the United States, please God, no (and that is a prayer!). I’m talking about the United Nations International Decade for People of African Descent,  2015-2024 (United Nations, 2020). Why am I just now hearing about this now, especially when there is … Continue reading “Four More Years”

Visibly Invisible

I am at the end of teaching my 8-week course on information literacy. My students’ last major writing assignment is to summarize all their blog entries into one paper. This is my example for them on my topic of racism. At 6’4”, I’m hard to miss. Add a white shirt, suspenders, bowtie, and a fedora … Continue reading “Visibly Invisible”

Take Action Now

A CONCRETE STEP YOU CAN TAKE NOW THROUGH CIVIC ENGAGEMENT IN A TIME OF CIVIL UNREST. Like many of you, I condemn the deadly act of force against George Floyd at the hands of law enforcement personnel. During these times, we must exercise every right possible to prevent these acts. As an educator, I wanted … Continue reading “Take Action Now”

Dead Wrong

I am sickened, distressed, saddened, and dismayed by how our society continues to defend Stand Your Ground culture as a defense for murder. Two semesters ago, I read a book that opened my eyes to how good-intentioned white people still unknowingly perpetuate racism while vehemently declaring they/we/I are not/am not racist(s). I talk about that … Continue reading “Dead Wrong”

The Golden Rule

It is now the end of Spring semester, COVID-19 has changed our world, probably forever, and my students are writing their concluding blog for the semester. My entry here, is an example for them to follow. It is by no means is it the end of my own blogging. I have peppered this post with … Continue reading “The Golden Rule”

The WASP’s nest

We’re Americans, and as such, we can’t remember shit. Perhaps that’s why, as we write this, the massive, orchestrated effort by the current administration to revise history even as it occurs is experiencing almost total success. Events are being reduced to sound bites; sound bites are becoming mantras. The truth—if you edit carefully enough, omit … Continue reading “The WASP’s nest”

The Myth of Race

I continue to be saddened at the extinct to which the construct of race has contributed to a culture of racism that is systemic to our American society today. As part of my UCC SC2ER facilitator training this week I’ve had some heady assignments that I am still processing. One assignment was to watch episode … Continue reading “The Myth of Race”

Across the Great Divide

I was walking into work this morning. Behind me to my left were two white men, mid 40’s or 50’s. One rolling a suitcase with his overnight bag resting on top. The other walking beside him carrying nothing. Their conversation went something like this: Suitcase guy: “My wife and I had driven to a conference … Continue reading “Across the Great Divide”

I was black until 1967

If I am to define race based upon skin color, then at my very genetic core … I must be a light-skinned black man. Legally, until 1967, I was black growing up in the Commonwealth of Virginia as a result of the Racial Integrity Act of 1924 (the instructions of implementation for the act are … Continue reading “I was black until 1967”

The Journey Continues

Last semester I started blogging about white fragility (DiAngelo, 2018) as an example blog for my students’ assignments. It’s another semester and time to start my blogging again. My overarching question in my first post of last semester, What color is my hat, was how may I, as a Christian white man, talk with other … Continue reading “The Journey Continues”

What color is your Jesus?

In my research question, I pose the question on how, I, as a Christian, can help in shattering the frozen face of white fragility and talk openly about race. I find it curious that the majority of representations of Christ I see, picture a white Christ. Geographically, I don’t see how Christ could have been … Continue reading “What color is your Jesus?”

Family Values

To the left is a picture from my Facebook feed (Cook-Snell, 2018). My mother is standing next to a member from my local church. Both women are in their 80s and have experienced a rich and full life. The caption I gave the picture in my post is “wisdom personified”. I can only imagine the … Continue reading “Family Values”

Color-blindness is a medical condition not a social excuse

Look at the chessboard in the picture from Chessbazaar.com (2019). What colors do you see? If you said black and white, then you cannot claim color-blindness. Color-blindness is a medical condition not a social excuse. Recently I had a conversation with a colleague in which they stated they were color-blind when it came to race. … Continue reading “Color-blindness is a medical condition not a social excuse”


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