In Oregon, Being on Time is Now Racist

I don’t know whether to laugh or cry.

On July 1, 2022, Danielle Droppers, MSW, (she/her), Regional Health Equity Coalition Program Manager with the Oregon Health Authority, emailed that a scheduled conversation between OHA officials and members of the public wouldn’t take place as planned.  No special news there. 

But read her tone-deaf reason:

“Thank you for your interest in attending the community conversation between Regional Health Equity Coalitions (RHECs) and Community Advisory Councils (CACs) to discuss the Community Investment Collaboratives (CICs). In being responsive to partners from across the state, we’re hearing the liming of this meeting is not ideal and that people would like more time to prepare for this important conversation.
We recognize that urgency is a white supremacy value (emphasis added) that can get in the way of more intentional and thoughtful work, and we want to attend to this dynamic. Therefore, we will reach out at a later date to reschedule. Thank you so much for your patience, care and understanding.”

“…urgency is a white supremacy value…”?

“The KKK would unironically love this explanation,”  commented a July 8 post from Common Sense with Bari Weiss.

I guess even Alice’s White Rabbit, “I’m late, I’m late! For a very important date! No time to say ‘hello, goodbye,’ I’m late, I’m late, I’m late!,” was a racist.

By the way, Droppers is the same woman who resigned from the Portland Police Bureau’s Training Advisory Council because, she said, it had not responded promptly to a council proposal. “We’re getting untimely responses to our recommendations,” she told The Oregonian newspaper. “There’s a level of frustration.”

Droppers’ LinkedIn account says she has a Bachelor of Arts (BA) in Sociology from California State University Bakersfield and a  Masters degree in Social Work (MSW) from Portland State University. Where do educated people like her get this stuff?

Adding insult to injury, Reason magazine,  an monthly American libertarian publication, disclosed that a county health official responded to an inquiry about the email by citing a link that redirects to a website that purportedly identifies aspects of white supremacy culture.

The website, Reason noted, was “conceived and designed” by Tema Okun, a white antiracist educator who has popularized the idea that several benign and widespread traits are actually characteristic of white supremacy. Among these are preferring quantity over quality, wanting things to be written down, perfectionism, becoming defensive, and yes, possessing a sense of urgency.

“The characteristics…are damaging because they are used as norms and standards without being pro- actively named or chosen by the group.,” Okun has written. “They are damaging because they promote white supremacy thinking. 

So now, in Oregon at least, being on time is racist. 

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