The Black Lives Matter protests have caused many to speak about their experiences in dealing with daily microaggressions and the effects of systemic racism. This week, People reports on an upcoming clip of the Jemele Hill Is Unbothered podcast where actress Kerry Washington opens up about her own experiences with racism and how that affects how she raises her children, especially in a politically charged climate.
“I know that might sound crazy and corny, but I try to think about, what do I need to be doing right now to take care of myself so that I am present for them, to be able to answer the questions of, ‘Who is this girl, Breonna Taylor, on my T-shirt?’ And, ‘Why do we want to arrest the cops?”
Washington expresses that she speaks to her kids about racism because of the realities of being Black in the United Staes. “To be having those conversations with young children, it requires a lot of presence and ability to navigate their journey with this information and to be there for them because there’s so much uncertainty in the world,” she said.
“When I speak about this country, I speak as a mother, I speak as a woman, I speak as a Black person,” she continues. “I speak as a kid who grew up in the Bronx, across the street from the projects. I don’t speak as a Hollywood elite. I speak as somebody who’s the mother of Black children, as somebody who had student loans way longer than I thought I would. I speak as somebody who cares about my community and the community that my family lives in, my extended family.”
“I don’t think my job as a mom is to take away all the uncertainty, because dealing with uncertainty is part of the human experience, but can I navigate the uncertainty with them and try to mitigate what is age-appropriate?” Washington asks. “It’s challenging. It’s an ongoing conversation.”