Originally I was going to put a disclaimer before tomorrow’s post but this topic really deserves it’s own space. I am writing this because despite having a small platform, I still have a platform of almost 1k subscribers and therefore it’s my responsibility to address systemic racism. Is it sad that it’s taken this long for white people to react so strongly? Hell yes! Is it sad that it’s taken this long for me as an individual to realise my own complicity in systemic racism? Absolutely. This is all about to change.
Tomorrow’s post is a ranking of Drag Race Winners and I had planned to rank all of J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter books and movies next month. I will still publish my Drag Race content but with everything that has happened recently, I no longer want to promote a white woman who has made trans-phobic comments over amplifying black voices. Do not get me wrong here: I love Harry Potter and always will, but I have a choice to do better and I pick better. This blog will still feature all of the things I love but it will be more mindful of cultural appropriation, diversity and uplifting black voices. This is a lifelong promise.
I am very close to finishing Me and White Supremacy by Layla F. Saad. You can find this book here however, it is very much in demand right now so you may need to wait a while before it’s delivered. The work has shown me just how complicit I have been in upholding systemic racism. I was going to do a separate post about everything I have learned from this book but instead, I ask that you purchase the book yourself and share it with every white person you know. I don’t want to give too much away in fear that people will ignore the book because I’ve basically shared all the content. Buy the book, do the work. I implore you. If at this point you have any questions, please contact me on here or via my email on the About page. I ask that you refrain from making assumptions. If you have not read Me and White Supremacy, I would also request that you do not try to soften any of what I’m about to say. Again, read the book, do the work and learn the correct terminology.
I want this to be very very clear. I am not asking for ‘ally cookies’ which relates to gratification or praise that I’m doing the work. In fact, Layla plainly states that only a person of colour has a right to comment on whether a white person is being a good ally or not. I do not want a single accolade. I am calling myself out on my White Silence and White Apathy, acknowledging my white guilt (which Layla says is normal) and doing better. That is all. I am committed to doing the work for the rest of my life and that starts with the changes I can make on this blog and in my personal life. This relates to how I will raise my daughter to actually see her white privilege, be aware of colour (look up Blind Colorism) and teach her how to be an ally.
I recently subscribed to a puzzle magazine that also shares stories/art from Australian and New Zealander women. Last night I emailed them asking if this includes Indigenous (Aboriginal and Maori) women as well. How do they show diversity in their magazine? I have not heard back yet. Again, read up top, this is not about saying: ‘how good am I for reaching out?’ This is because I planned on promoting this magazine on my blog and now I am determined to make sure it is diverse. If it isn’t, I will not share it nor continue to support it. This research will continue, should a company reach out to work with me or if I want to showcase books/movies/media but I can see they are all from white artists.
Let me show you something quickly. Yesterday, I made a list of all the books on my Goodreads ‘Want to Read’ page. What pattern do you notice?
I am mainly reading white authors. Now, I know some people may say: ‘well she’s only going to include black authors now because it’s trendy.’ No. I will continue to amplify black voices for the rest of my life and if you see in a year’s time that I’m not doing that – CALL ME OUT. That is your responsibility as an ally to people of colour. I promise you now and I will promise you down the line that I will mess up. Continue to call me out and I will keep owning it and doing better. I actually love reading from all walks of life but I tend to stay ‘within my lane.’ I am mainly subscribed to white YouTuber’s, I mainly watch white shows/movies. I didn’t even realise I was doing it. Again, I am calling myself out and doing better. No ifs, buts or maybes.
The biggest way I have been complicit in systemic racism is via White Silence and White Apathy. I spent a long time hiding behind my mental health; refusing to look at anything too confronting in case it upset me. This is white privilege. Because I avoided everything, I didn’t speak up either. Because I kept away, I wasn’t educated.
Yesterday I told my mother that for the first time, I watched an actual Black Lives Matter protest where I witnessed peaceful protesters get gassed and shot with rubber bullets. I cried the whole way through and whilst I wanted to turn it off a million times, I forced myself to keep watching. My mother (who is only being a mum and caring about me) said: ‘please be mindful of your mental health.’ I told her that all of this is more important than my mental health and I refuse to turn away any longer. I repeat firmly again, I am not asking for ally cookies. I am showing anybody who reads this just how subtle racism can be. We always think it’s overt and aggressive but it’s so much deeper than that. It is layered and complex and ingrained in all of us. It is a system we must work at dismantling for the rest of our lives. What we don’t realise is that our silence is just as violent and tells the world that systemic racism is justified to continue.
Finally, I want to be clear about what I will not tolerate. If you make a single racist or ‘All Lives Matter’ comment on here, you will be permanently blocked. I am not going to allow that hate/ignorance on my blog. My biggest aim is to be a better ally to BIPOC and use my white privilege to shine a light on systemic racism. That is the least I can do. Keep sharing posts on social media, retweeting, donating, protesting and amplifying black voices. Remember to contact me with any questions. Thank you for reading. I love you all. More importantly to my readers of colour – I see you, I stand with you. The work begins with us and only once we’ve done the work, can we begin to make a change…
Here are some resources on how to support Black Lives Matter from Australia. I will continue to educate myself. If you are a person of colour, please leave a link to your blog below. I will subscribe and continue supporting you.
Peace & Love xoxo