Timing is everything

Listening to the latest episode of The Diversity Gap podcast on Spotify, something instantly struck a chord with me: “Timing is everything”.

“There are some thoughts you can share… and they fall completely flat. It’s almost as if no one was listening. But then, you can share that same thought in the right cultural moment and it sets the world on a different trajectory altogether.”

Bethaney Wilkinson – The Diversity Gap podcast.
Episode: Building equity from the ground up with Dr. Darnisa Amante-Jackson.

You could make a statement at one point in time and nobody would take any notice but you could say it at another moment in time and it resonates. I feel that’s what we’re currently witnessing for the Black Lives Matter movement. For years, decades and even centuries people in the black community have been speaking of their views about prejudice. Now others are taking notice.

In news for something to be on the agenda there needs to be a ‘peg’, something to hang a story on. This could be an anniversary, event or development. The death of George Floyd was that moment. He died in Minneapolis, Minnesota, when a white police officer knelt on his neck for nearly nine minutes.

I cannot profess to be an expert in racial issues. I’m a white woman of privilege; someone who has experienced prejudice in life but in a different way to that of racial tension or oppression. However, I’m someone who can hopefully be seen as an ally, who’s passionate about diversity, inclusion and equality. I’ve tried to educate myself in the issues that are being discussed, watched the coverage, read articles and spoken to black people to hear their views.

It should not have to take the death of a man to make people take notice. When anyone raises concerns over the way they are treated we, as a 21st century society, must listen. (Not just pay lip-service. Lip-service is akin to ignorance.) Then, if necessary, make any changes that come out of those conversations to quell inequality.

Systematic changes can take time but, as Bethaney Wilkinson says in The Diversity Gap podcast “timing is everything”. Social change is possible and maybe the time for that in terms of race relations is now. We’ve already seen global protests, statues taken down and police officers charged, in the three weeks since George Floyd’s death.

“Diversity is about dignity. It’s not about metrics and marketing and money. It’s about real people, real stories, real lives.”

Bethaney Wilkinson – The Diversity Gap podcast.
Episode: Building equity from the ground up with Dr. Darnisa Amante-Jackson.

Racism is wrong. Diversity is something to be celebrated. And, when prejudice occurs, it must not be ignored.


About Katy Booth

Broadcaster and journalist who has worked in the newsrooms of BBC local radio, regional television and commercial radio for more than a decade. BJTC accredited.

Posted on June 12, 2020, in News, Opinion and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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