21-Day Race Equity Challenge

21-Day Race Equity Challenge

In the wake of events and protests across our nation and the world, we are compelled to witness to Christ’s commands to love, honor, and care for all people. Highland Presbyterian Church is providing its members and others the opportunity to undertake a 21-Day Race Equity Challenge – a program adapted by Myers Park Presbyterian Church and other congregations and designed by Dr. Eddie Moore. For the next three weeks, read, listen, watch, notice, and grow. Be more equipped to make real change.

Use the form below to join the challenge

The Challenge

  • Pick one of the resources listed below or on the Myers Park’s Challenge page every day for 21 days.
  • Diversify your understanding by doing some from each category.
  • Share your reflections, and recommend other resources, using the Comment Section below.
  • Pray for the places you are challenged and the people you are learning about.
  • Join in conversations, via Zoom, which will be scheduled and announced.
  • Share an Idea and see Others’ Ideas via Google Doc.
Join the Challenge
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

List of Participants

These individuals have already joined the 21 Day Race Equity Challenge. Join them!
Rob Miller
Linda Valentine
Steve Makela
Cynthia Campbell
Helen Jones
Sara Ceresa
Susan Emison
Steven Holmes
Martha Makela
Patti Hartog
Edith Ethridge
Larry Hartog
Lynda Clark
Heidi Helmers
Angie Andriot
Karen Cook
MaryEllen Harned
Carol Toner
Molly Prince
Kathy Reed
Alice H. Cash
Jenny Siegenthaler
Megan McCarty
Steve Rungwerth
Kathleen Rungwerth
Cathy Smock
Maureen Kirk
Karin Soltau
Joern Soltau
Patti Pinkley
Kathy Emrich
Sara Gahan
Megan Ward
Dorissa Falk
Becky Slagle
Kate Healy
Kevin Burns
Jack Ashworth
Jane Ernst Crowley
Laurie Anderson
Amy Hoyt
Patricia Connally
Greg Sekula
Audrey Schuetze
Sharon Owen
Melissa Head
Terry Fontenot
Sheila Welsh
Clyde Foshee
Kristin Townsend
Ralph Bowling
Anne Baker
Donald Seeger
Jane Burbank
Stephanie Maloney
Greg Sekula
JoAnn Utter
Laurie Mercke
Chris Valentine
Kathleen Poole
Paul Troy
Karen Hauck
Fred Ernstberger
Judy Stubbs
Phyllis Owen
Bill Grubbs
Hannah Thomas
Larry Ethridge
Renata DeWees
Stephanie Letson
Edie Tidwell
Kathleen Mounce
Ann Lacy
Viola Blackwell
Meg Rift
Alicia Bloos
Tracy Morrison
Don Garton
Melissa Zoeller
Don Richter

Click any of the titles to participate in the exercise.  More will continue to be added.  Estimated time for completion provided, if available.


This is Us, Dr. Eddie Glaude explains why blaming current racial tensions on Donald Trump misses the point. (3 minutes)

Racism is Real, A split-screen video depicting the differential in the white and black lived experience. (3 minutes)

Confronting ‘intergroup anxiety’: Can you try too hard to be fair?Explores why we may get tongue tied and blunder when we encounter people from groups unfamiliar to us. (5 minutes)

CBS News Analysis: 50 states, 50 different ways of teaching America’s past, Ibram X. Kendi reviews current history curriculum production and use across the U.S. (5 minutes)

The Disturbing History of the Suburbs, An “Adam Ruins Everything” episode that quickly and humorously educates how redlining came to be. (6 minutes)

What Kind of Asian Are You? Humorous two minute YouTube video that illustrates the utter silliness of the way many white Americans interact with Asian Americans. (2 minutes)

Birth of a White NationKeynote speech by legal scholar Jacqueline Battalora, offers a blow-by-blow description of the moment the idea of, and word for, “white” people entered U.S. legal code. (36 minutes)

13th, Netflix documentary by Ava DuVernay about the connection between US Slavery and the present day mass incarceration system. (1 hour, 40 minutes)

How to overcome our biases? Walk boldly toward themTED Talk by Vernā Myers, encourages work vigorously to counter balance bias by connecting with and learning about and from the groups we fear. (19 minutes)

The danger of a single story, TED Talk by Chimamanda Adiche, offers insight to the phenomenon of using small bits of information to imagine who a person is. (18 minutes)

How to deconstruct racism, one headline at a time, TED Talk by Baratunde Thurston that explores patterns revealing our racist framing, language, and behaviors. (10 minutes) 

Indigenous People React to Indigenous Representation in Film And TV, Conversation with a diverse range of Indigenous people by FBE about  media depictions of Indigenous people, Columbus day, and Indigenous identity. (15 minutes)  

What Being Hispanic and Latinx Means in the United States, Fernanda Ponce shares what she’s learning about the misunderstanding and related mistreatment of the incredibly diverse ethnic category people in U.S. call Hispanic. (12 minutes) 

Tyler Merrit Project: Before You Call (3 minutes)


10 Ways Well-Meaning White Teachers Bring Racism Into Our Schoolsby Jamie Utt

21 Racial Microaggressions You Hear on a Daily Basis, by Heben Nigatu

Climbing the White Escalator, by Betsy Leondar-Wright

Explaining White Privilege To A Broke White Person, by 

Guide to AllyshipCreated by Amélie Lamont

It’s Not Just the South: Here’s How Everyone Can Resist White Supremacyby Sarah van Gelder

Making America White Again, by Toni Morrison

Understanding the Racial Wealth Gap, by Amy Traub, Laura Sullivan, Tatjana Mescheded, & Tom Shapiro

What White Children Need to Know About Raceby Ali MIchael and Elenora Bartoli

White Privilege: Unpacking the Invisible Knapsack, by Peggy McIntosh

My President Was Black, by  Ta-Nehisi Coates

Caught Up In Godby Willie James Jennings

Who Gets to Be Afraid in America?, by Ibram X Kendi



Code Switch, hosted by journalists Gene Demby and Shereen Marisol Meraji

Black Like Me, host Dr. Alex Gee 

Scene on Radio – Seeing White Series, host John Biewen and collaborator Chenjerai Kumanyika 

TED Radio Hour – Mary Bassett: How Does Racism Affect Your Health? host Guy Raz speaks with Dr. Mary T. Bassett, Director of the FXB Center for Health and Human Rights at Harvard University 

Here & Now – Without Slavery, Would The U.S. Be The Leading Economic Power? host Jeremy Hobson and author Edward Baptist

NPR Morning Edition – You Cannot Divorce Race From Immigration journalist Rachel Martin talks to Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Jose Antonio Vargas

Pod Save the People, Activism. Social Justice. Culture. Politics. On Pod Save the People, organizer and activist DeRay Mckesson


Test Your Awareness: Do The Test This video shows us the importance of paying attention, and how much more we see when we are looking for particular things around us.

Use each question below separately as one day’s challenge.

Who is and is not represented in ads?

What are the last five books you read? What is the racial mix of the authors?

 What is the racial mix of the main characters in your favorite TV shows? Movies?

Who is filling what kinds of jobs/social roles in your world?  Can you correlate any of this to racial identity?

32 comments on “21-Day Race Equity Challenge
  1. Stephanie Letson says:

    I just finished “White Rage” by Carol Anderson. My book club moved the rest of our list forward a month and added it in. It was a very tough read, a systemic list and analysis of systemic racism in this country for the last two hundred years. But, it was extremely illuminating, and educated me about a lot of events that I had no idea about, as well as shining a light on some more subtle things that I had not considered. Difficult but really worth it. I knew about some of the things individually, but having them all together really brought home how very pervasive the problems are in this country. I highly recommend it.

  2. Linda Valentine says:

    An editorial by the former Mayor of Minneapolis. https://www.nytimes.com/2020/07/09/opinion/minneapolis-hodges-racism.html

    She begins: Democrats have largely led big and midsize cities for much of the past half-century. Yet the gaps in socioeconomic outcomes between white people and people of color are by several measures at their worst in the richest, bluest cities of the United States.

    How could this be? Because high-profile cultural conservatives ask this question so disingenuously, white liberals have generally brushed aside this reality rather than grappled with its urgency. There’s now a danger that this sidestepping will continue, even after a national evaluation of racism since the brutal police killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis. . . .

  3. Larry Hartog says:

    Read this today, spoke to me about how to proceed….

    To this day I believe we are here on Earth to live, grow, and do what we can to make this world a better place for all people to enjoy freedom.


  4. Larry Hartog says:

    Words of inspiration:

    What you are, the world is. And without your transformation, there can be no transformation of the world.


  5. Larry Hartog says:

    I listened to this interview with Vincent Harding. He has a long history of involvement in the struggles African Americans experience. It gave me a perspective on our journey ahead.


  6. Linda Valentine says:

    Stephanie, thank you for pointing this one out, a very moving essay: https://www.nytimes.com/2020/06/26/opinion/confederate-monuments-racism.html
    This challenge has attuned me to the resources appearing every day.

  7. This is a provocative pod cast on various elements in this issue. I found the part on German’s response to its Nazi history instructive.

  8. Cynthia M. Campbell says:

    On February 12, 1865, the Rev Henry Highland Garnet (a Presbyterian pastor) became the first African American to address Congress. His address or sermon is titled “Let the Monster Perish,” and it is a call to Congress to work to pass the 13th Amendment which they had just passed. His sermon is in the public domain, but Westminster John Knox has just published it in a small booklet with the title “Let the Monster Perish.” Garnet was born into slavery in Maryland and escaped with his family to New York when he was 9, so technically he lived most of his life (until Emancipation) as a fugitave slave. In 1881, he was appointed Counsel General to Liberia by President Garfield. You can order the little pamphlet version from http://www.pcusastore.com or from Westminster John Knox Press (or even Amazon/Kindle).

  9. MaryEllen Harned says:

    I don’t want to put too much meaning in this observation, but as a positive sign that others are joining in the need/desire to be better informed, at least 8 of the top 10 non-fiction best sellers on last week’s New York Times list dealt with racial justice issues!

  10. Two interesting articles on the challenges of bringing about change even when there’s support:
    “The Message is Clear: Policing in America Must Change, But How?” from the New York Times Magazine, 6/21/20

    And “Minneapolis had Progressive Policies…” https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/2020/06/30/minneapolis-had-progressive-policies-its-economy-still-left-black-families-behind/

  11. Stephanie Letson says:

    This New York Times essay is one of the most moving and profound things I have read in a long time: https://www.nytimes.com/2020/06/26/opinion/confederate-monuments-racism.html

  12. Jennifer Siegenthaler says:

    I just read “Explaining White Privilege to a Broke White Person” and I thought of the many poor white people that I knew as a child growing up in the mountains of WV. The majority of them were kind, sharing people. Since I grew up near a resort, people moved in and out of our town. There was racial diversity. I’m sure, though, that many would have a hard time appreciating the concept of white privilege, since so many suffer from economic hardship.

  13. Linda Valentine says:

    “But what can I/we do?” is such a common question. A number of leaders in Louisville, from the Urban League, EmpowerWest and other organizations, issued a 20 page petition to Mayor Fischer with specific recommendations and identification of who needs to act. “A Path Forward for Louisville” is linked in the article: https://www.courier-journal.com/story/news/local/2020/06/19/louisville-protests-black-leaders-send-petition-mayor-greg-fischer/3225342001/

    One is directed at white churches, reading in part: “We’re calling upon the white church, white faith institutions, and the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary to move from being non-racist to aggressively becoming antiracists. . . . Biblical repentance means more than apologizing. It means restoring the victims of crime and injury. We are calling upon the white church and faith institutions to make Zacchaeus in Luke 19 your model for repentance as we pray for both conciliation and reconciliation for America’s 400 Year racial divide.
    Who needs to act? You; Majority white houses of faith; White-led houses of faith; White faith institutions; Southern Baptist Theological Seminary”

  14. Meg Rift says:

    I’ve been listening to books on Audible:
    Stamped by Jason Reynolds and Ibram X. Kendi
    I’m Still Here: Black Dignity in a Workd Made for Whiteness by Austin Channing Brown
    How to be an Antiracist by Ibram X. Kendi

    I’ve also compiled a LONG list of children’s picture books that I have collected from friends’ FB posts with books about racial justice, racial identity, and diversity. There are 77 books on the list!
    Email Me if you’d like the list

  15. Kathleen Rungwerth says:

    As many of us wrestle with the emotional issues of race in conversations with family and friends with opposing political views, I have been frustrated with my own inabilities to calmly listen and discuss these issues without feeling outraged. I just read an article in the New York Times that gave me tips that I hope to apply in my next conversations: active listening and using the 3 F’s (felt, found, and feel). The article is “Talking With Relatives Across the Political Divide” and printed on June 29.


  16. Kathy Reed says:

    I read an article in the Courier Journal today,”White people’s silence enables racism to spread unabated” by Jen Algire. Honestly, much of it I have read before. However, she poses a question, “Would I want to be a Black person living in America today?” If your answer is no, why not? This question has led me to expand my thinking on racism, hope it helps you too.

  17. Angie L Andriot says:

    The “What kind of Asian are you?” video is HILARIOUS. I also watched the Adam Ruins Everything on redlining. There is a really great interactive map on redlining Louisville that deep dives into our town. One part has a slider where you can see past redlining compared to current conditions. https://www.arcgis.com/apps/MapSeries/index.html?appid=a73ce5ba85ce4c3f80d365ab1ff89010

  18. Steve Makela says:

    Another good read (3 minutes) from an Aspen Challenge participant who was arrested during her protest in Louisville – her thoughts and experience:

  19. Jennifer Siegenthaler says:

    I read the piece on how white teachers bring racism into the classroom. The segment on culturally responsive teaching really made me think. “Culturally responsive teaching also demands that we not simply focus on the races of our students but, instead, turn the lens on our own racial identity.” I’m giving this more thought in the coming days.

  20. Mary Ellen Harned says:

    Just listened to an NPR interview with Robin DeAngelo, author of “White Fragility,” who said: “Start by asking yourself ‘What does it mean to be white?'” However well-meaning we may be, we need to understand our own role in the racial divide. Among her suggestions was participation in the 21-day Racial Equity Challenge!

  21. On 6/19/20, the Washington Post posted “Resources to Understand the Long History of Injustice and Inequality” https://www.washingtonpost.com/nation/2020/06/08/understanding-racism-inequality-america/?arc404=true

  22. Linda Valentine says:

    Thanks for pointing that one out, Jenny.
    https://www.huffpost.com/entry/explaining-white-privilege-to-a-broke-white-person_b_5269255?utm_hp_ref=tw describes a more nuanced understanding of privilege: Poverty subjects one to certain disadvantages/discrimination even for a white person, for example. Intersectionality recognizes people can be privileged in some ways, and not in others. Citizenship, class, sex, sex orientation, gender identity, ability – all things one is born into. Recognize that, recognize that others don’t have some privileges (or many); and some disadvantage have more impact than others. Race may be the strongest.

  23. Jenny Siegenthaler says:

    I just watched racism is real. It certainly puts it all into perspective and the facts and percentages they provide helped me understand the reality of it.

  24. Steve Makela says:

    This is a great opportunity to introduce Highland Pres to people near and far. Invite anyone or groups you know to sign up on our page – ones who might benefit from accessing our growing curated list of links related to Racial Equity.

    An amazing graphic here: https://theirnames.org/
    Click on any names, also click on the tabs at the top to re-sort.

  25. Linda Valentine says:

    It’s great to see so many people sign up quickly. Keep spreading the word!

    Many of the items on the website are short but impactful and thought provoking. The 3 minute one by Eddie Glaude reminds us that racism is not about one leader or a few people, but the country has used race for political purposes for generations.
    The short piece on microagressions made me think about things I have heard – and probably said!

    Another resource is the Atlantic article by Ta Nehisi Coates “The Case for Reparations – “Two hundred fifty years of slavery. Ninety Years of Jim Crow. Sixty years of separate but unequal. Thirty-five years of racist housing”. It’s long, so you might want to give yourself Challenge credit for multiple days. policyhttp://www.theatlantic.com/features/archive/2014/05/the-case-for-reparations/361631/ 2014 A point he makes: until we reckon with our compounding moral debts, America will never be whole.

  26. Karen Cook says:

    Hey y’all! Love all the resources, have been working my way through the videos. I’ve been listening to Code Switch since it came out, and I am obsessed! If this is your first time listening to Code Switch, I highly recommend starting with their inaugural podcast, “Can We Talk About Whiteness?” (link below). I think we as white folk have a strong tendency to view this as a “how can we help them?” type of issue, and over the years I have come to deeply believe that the heart of the issue is this ideal of whiteness that kicked off racism back in the day and that still has a clench hold on all of our culture, politics, and policies. I’ll try to find more on the history of whiteness and white identity and how it’s tied to racism, but in the meantime this episode does a fabulous job of exploring whiteness as we see (or don’t see) it today.


  27. Patti Oldham Pinkley says:

    After watching This is Us, I was struck anew with the reality that until each new generation is able to get past stereotypes and relate to each other as unique human beings this horror will continue. Once we interact act as individuals it is all but impossible to continue to view them as “other”. How do we institutionalize this rather than the old ways?

  28. Jennifer Siegenthaler says:

    I watched This is Us. It was eye opening. I’m ashamed and embarrassed that I thought things were better with our election of Obama. I guess I should have known better. The US needs to address systemic racism. It is way past time.

  29. Molly Prince says:

    I read “10 Ways Well-Meaning White Teachers Bring Racism Into Our Schools.” This was hard to read, as I recognized my missteps more than once. But I learned so much and I am so grateful! There are definitely specific actions I can and will change. The underlying current I am holding onto most tightly is the importance of knowing as much as I can about my students, their stories, and their lives, and giving respect and honor to their individual experience.

  30. Carol Toner says:

    I am just beginning the challenge! There is a wonderful article in The NY Times today that is a moderated discussion on police reform. I found it quite enlightening. Consistently, the panelists refer to the need for increased funding for social services in troubled neighborhoods. I encourage you to read it.


  31. Jenny Siegenthaler says:

    I read the 21 racial micro aggression article. I appreciate that micro aggressions are noted regardless of whether the intent of the comment was negative. I learned something!

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