When racists’ emotions raise over issues of race (e.g. a Black person arises to a position of power), they harass, assault, and kill people of color.
When NON-racists’ emotions raise over issues of race (e.g. yet another unarmed Black person is murdered by the people whose mandate is to protect), we scream, we jeer, and we mock the racists.
Compare these two sets of responses.
We complain that people are suffering and being murdered, and they then respond with greater, systematic violence.
THEY complain that we’re making fun of them or inconveniencing them, and WE respond by telling our own people that we’ve crossed a line or are being disrespectful when we call them pigs or assholes or whatever.
We all need to wake up to the FACT that we are being played. If you cave in to words like “respect” and “civility” when it comes to these issues, you have handed the racists a WIN. They have long since stopped deserving respect, and it is conservatives who took the civility out of politics (see: Newt Gingrich).
If you are afraid or otherwise unable to confront racists with the harshness and boldness that is needed and that they deserve, that’s fine. You don’t have to. What you need to do, though, is support those who do. If someone you know is leaving the house to protest with a “Fuck The Police” shirt, hold back that urge to tell them why you don’t think it’s a good idea. If a friend or family member is getting into a IRL or online fight with racists, be on their side—even if it’s just dressing their wounds with a smile.
Edited to add: If you think that their actions are putting them in danger, try to keep them safe—without criticizing their actions or intent.