Do You Know What You Don’t Know?

Can you imagine what’s possible beyond what you don’t know?

Photo Credit: Change Ye on

Sick of Being Strong in the Face of Wrong

Years ago, I read a book called Lies My Teacher Told Me by James Loewen. To which I then said I’m sick of being strong in the face of lies. More recently, I heard this lyric in a song: I’m sick of being strong in the face of wrong.

Today, I say I’m sick of being strong as people discuss the merits of the value of my history and culture, the very existence of my history and culture seen as an indictment against the comfort of White Americans.

In the process of trying to minimize the discomfort of some, the pain of others is exacerbated or simply ignored. So today, I say I’m sick of being strong in the face of lies and in the face of wrong.

Yet strong is what I must be, so my history does not disappear into the depths of someone else’s supposed discomfort.

The sad thing is this: When it comes to Black history and culture, so many people don’t even know what they don’t know. And if they don’t know what they don’t know, it’s impossible to realize what’s possible.

Here’s what I mean…

If you only know what you are taught to believe; and if you’re taught to believe that 2+2=5; and if you never question the validity of what you are taught to believe, isn’t that a form of mental enslavement?

(Freedom is related to knowledge and truth.)

Or consider the little boy who told 6-year-old Ruby Bridges, he couldn’t play with her because his mother said so. Perhaps if he was not being taught that 2+2=5, he may have freely chosen on his own to play with Ruby simply because he saw her as another child.

(Freedom is related to knowledge and truth.)

There’s a real dilemma brewing today with attempts to perpetually whitewash history, ban and burn books, and underestimate the scholarship of critical race theory and the 1619 Project.

What do you do as more and more people at the grassroots level become aware of what they don’t know?

What do you do with all those people who realized that 2+2 did not add up to 5 as they watched Derek…



Anita D Russell, Founder/CEO The Place to SOAR

Activism through Coaching | Author of Cultivating Change from the Inside Out: The Power of Being Human | Creating space for courageous conversation.