Anxiety is the word that I would use to describe my feelings towards everything happening in the news. We see all that is happening around us, and while most of us are sharing the injustice, some are being noticeably silent.
As a non-Black person of color, are you using your voice as an ally for the community?
As Rihanna once famously said at the 2020 NAACP Awards, “How many of us in this room have colleagues and partners and friends from other races, sexes, religions?” she asked. “Well then, you know, they want to break bread with you. Do they like you? Well then, this is their problem too. So when we’re marching and protesting and posting about the Michael Brown Jr.s and the Atatiana Jeffersons of the world, tell your friends to pull up.”
Here are some ways that you can help being an ally and being actionable with your voice:
Share Credible Information
Share information that will highlight the facts of events that took place before the crime. The misinformation that continues to spread about the victims and the crime to justify the racial oppressor is more common than you think. News articles are trying to sway the public’s minds on evil, and it paints the victim to be in the wrong. Showing the past criminal record or just claiming they looked “suspicious” plays into the racism. To find credible articles, search upon non-bias news sources.
Check on Your Black Friends
Yes, you have read that right. You are reading that right. By the time we are in our teens, we are taught how to comply with police to avoid our greatest fears, never coming back home. That’s a fear that strikes most of our minds when we are in the same space as them. You won’t understand that painfully of being a “potential threat” because you wanted to listen to your music a little bit louder at the park or just asking someone to leash their dog. You won’t understand, but being a friend and listening is just as helpful. Don’t dismiss their pain and the fear they endure. Be a friend to your Black Friends.
You Don’t Always Need To Post The Video
The videos of us being murdered and lying in the street lifeless is something we are not unfamiliar with. We have learned at an early age what the hands of murder can do to us since we were young enough to understand the story of Emmett Till. Try to alleviate this by sharing information without a video or image attached. You don’t need a video or image to see the pain we endure; you need to listen to us.
PULL UP & SPEAK UP
You can’t choose when it is time to be a friend or ally to us when it benefits you. You can’t have the mindset of “I don’t see color” meanwhile, the rest of the world does. Whether you are dating, friends or family are Black; it’s time for you to stand by them. Speak up about the crimes and pull up when it is time to march! We are stronger together.
If you have the mindset of “well, it’s not me,” then you need to check yourself and your misplacement on why you can’t show up for your Black friends.