A Guide to Anti-Racism for Mercer Students

We are currently living in a time of great civil unrest. It is easy to feel helpless in this time, but all is not lost. There are many ways allies can learn more about racism and its effects on both the world and our communities. 

The first step in doing the work of being anti-racist is understanding bias. 

It should be noted that everyone has biases, whether these are conscious or subconscious. If you are interested in examining your bias, researchers at Harvard University developed the Harvard Implicit Association Test that is meant to help its users “recognize unconscious/hidden biases which may unknowingly distort our objective evaluation and treatment of others based upon race, gender, religion, culture, etc” according to its website. 

“The best thing to do is educate yourself, become an ally,” Dr. Booker, Director of the Office of Diversity and Inclusion said. “Accountability is really what’s going to move this forward. If you see something, if you hear something, you can’t be silent anymore, you gotta hold people accountable.”  

Learning about anti-racism can be as easy as participating in events and seminars that focus on discussing race and provide helpful resources on how to combat racism in the world. Mercer’s Office of Diversity and Inclusion and Counseling and Psychological Services will be hosting a series of events on race and allyship through June 24. 

The Office of Diversity and Inclusion have also compiled a list of books and articles from Mercer Library that all students will have access to through their university login. 

In addition to reading up on the subjects of anti-racism and how it affects people the world over, it is also important to listen to students of color during this time. 

“I want (allies) to try to come to us more,” Mercer student Autumn Diallo said. “I have white friends and…if they wanted to ask me a question, I want them to be comfortable asking that question without being afraid.” 

Activist and writer Angela Davis once said, “In a racist society, it is not enough to to be non-racist, we must be anti-racist.” 

Being anti-racist is not a week long venture but a lifelong study. It takes hard work and an open mind to dismantle the explicit and implicit biases that we all have. 

“I want (allies) to be right there where we are,” Mercer student Chance Allen said. “They at least should be understanding and advocating for the same things that we are and also educating and informing themselves…”