White People and Weaponizing Black Voices

104121658_10221411190003520_244420355568916121_nWhen a white person posts videos of black celebrities, a very small minority among the black community, wherein the black celebrities are agreeing with the white person’s views on race, racism, and racial issues, what they are saying is pretty straight-forward:

They are saying they have no interest in doing the antiracist work of reading and listening to the majority opinion about race and racism in the black community.

They are saying they do not care to read, study, and educate themselves out of their made-up minds about race and racism, which they deny exists at a systemic level despite a plethora of evidence to condemn that line of thought. I stand by this assumption and calling out of their bullshit because they never post videos that disagree with them about racism and its systemic nature. That tells me all I need to know about folks sharing these awful, misguided, chopped up, poorly put together, and dangerously wrong videos.

They have no interest in entertaining that they could be wrong about race and racism, so they go out and find a handful of black celebrities who happen (for God knows why) to agree with their ignorance, share these videos (and I’ve seen countless folks sharing them), and make themselves feel better by doing so. I’ll go out on a limp and put money on it that folks sharing these videos haven’t read a single black author’s book about race and racism. That would be too hard. It’s easier to find a handful of black celebs who agree with you than listen to the majority of the black community, do the hard work, and educate oneself.

There’s plenty of black celebrities who think and believe similar things as Candace Owens and Larry Elder. Instead of doing the hard work and unlearning what their ignorance, they find folks who believe like those two, share the shit out of those minority voices, and then like to sit back and act like the majority of black folks agree with and think like individuals like Owens, Elder, and a handful of black celebs.

I have many black friends and know a shit ton of black people, and not a single one I know shares the bullshit those celebs and their ilk go around spewing.

Additionally, from a class analyst perspective, richer, famous black folks have a steak in keeping the system as is. They benefit from it more than the rest of us, particularly their fellow black brothers and sisters. That system has also removed them from the daily oppression of racism to a degree.

I use to think and believe that race and racism weren’t problems in this country. 10+ years ago I would be one of these white folks sharing these videos of a few black celebs agreeing with me because I didn’t want to check my own privilege, educate myself, listen, admit that I believed the racist myth of our country being “post-racial,” and do the hard inward and outward work of becoming antiracist.

Somehow, something did get me to do those things eventually, and I came to a place I repent (am repenting) of those old attitudes, opinions, and beliefs. The work isn’t easy. I have a shit ton left to learn and unlearn. I mess up. I make mistakes. I am by no means a perfect antiracist ally, nor do I pretend to be. The work is hard, but it is rewarding and necessary work.

If you’re white and sharing these videos (and there’s plenty of you out there, and we see you), please just be honest and say it: you don’t want to do the hard work, you really don’t see a problem, and you have no interest in listening to black folks, the majority of black folks, not ones who agree and empathize with your racist ideas.

If you’re going to refuse to do the work please just be honest about it and stop pretending to care. It is clear you don’t care nor do you want to care.

In fact, please just be quiet.

Hush.

If you don’t want to undo your own bias, racism, etc. that’s on you. Keep quiet and continue on in your being on the wrong side of history, but don’t go making it harder for the black community by sharing dangerously misinformed, ill-informed, and poorly thought out videos. Go hang out with the white folks who agree with you and continue on in your own bullshit silently. Those of us who are doing the work would appreciate that, so would your black friends and their community.

Stop weaponizing black voices (who are in the minority) to confirm you own bias and ignorance.

P.S. For those who do want to learn, unlearn, listen, read, and educate, please see my antiracism/antiracist resource page.

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