Why does history repeat itself? — Inheritance Project

The Inheritance Project
2 min readJun 3, 2020


History repeats itself when we resist critically examining our past, and taking the time and steps required to understand how we got where we are today.

As our nation erupts in protests over the murder of George Floyd and continuous police violence against people of color, we are challenged to cultivate an active awareness over where our reactions are coming from, and to think deeply about the most impactful actions each one of us can take.

The outpouring of energy after George Floyd’s killing by a Minnesota policeman is the most recent evidence that the racist systems we inherited are at a breaking point. Eruptions of strong emotions like anger and frustration are an invitation to ask ourselves difficult questions: Where did they come from? How did we end up in this situation, collectively?

If you live in America, the painful racial history of this country is a part of your inheritance. The very foundation of this nation was built by slaves. When slavery was outlawed, it was quickly replaced by the laws of Jim Crow. Those laws were repealed, but other systems of oppression quickly took their place -institutional racism, redlining, the prison industrial complex, and racist policing, just to name a few.

Oppression and injustice may wear many faces, but, at their core, they are patterns that live deep within the collective consciousness and inheritance of all human beings.

Creating a new, more just society takes deep inner work on a global scale that must go beyond posting on social media and donating to organizations. If you’re unsure where to start, you can find an excellent list of resources for taking action here .

We are in this for the long term. Unpacking inherited racism and biased belief systems is a lifelong journey of inner self-reflection and conscious change. We have heard a sentiment that, “the real work is done in private and in silence,” and while we agree that the most important thing for allies to do is to unpack their individual biases and beliefs, we don’t think you have to do this work alone.

In fact, our mission is to help you do this work with the support of a community.

The question is — if not now, when?

Originally published at https://www.inheritanceproject.org on June 3, 2020.