It’s Time to Have a Conversation
Last night a friend of mine sent me the live stream of Brene Brown, who I absolutely love. Brene was doing a call about Charlottesville and one of the points that she talked about was the need to have a very difficult conversation; to own our story.
We need to own our story as a country, our story as individuals, as a race, to own our story as a people.
I listened to her livestream a couple times because it was so powerful and had so many great points. Throughout the day I began to reflect about what that conversation and what her livestream had to do with the Black Girls Cheer movement.
Brene made a declaration that it’s time to have a conversation and I agree. I also recognize that there are still conversations that need to happen in our industry; conversations very similar to those that need to happen in the world. As I have stated before the cheer community is a representation of our world at large.
So what is the conversation that needs to happen? What is the conversation that needs to happen in our industry? What is the conversation that needs to at the gym level? What is the conversation that needs to happen at a national level? Amongst industry leaders? Brands? Policymakers?
Then I began to ask myself, “If I had the opportunity to have that conversation, to say what I would like to say, with all the parties that be, knowing that there were no consequences and repercussions, what would I say? What would I ask? Here’s what I came up with; well my questions at least…
What are you doing to insure that there is diversity and equity in the industry? Is there a diversity plan? Why has there never been an all-black team to medal at Worlds? Why are some all-black teams scored more critically? Why is there no diversity, equity and inclusion training mandated for gym owners and coaches?
Why are your event producers not required to have diverse representation on marketing materials?
Why are some of the marketing materials used at a corporate level not inclusive and representative of the cheerleaders you oversee?
What if you had the opportunity to have a conversation, to ask a question or question…no consequences, no repercussions, no point deductions? What would you ask? Tell me. I want to hear from you.
Sharita Mathis-Lawson, PhD