If I say #BlackLifeMatters and your response is “Why not EVERY life?” Unfollow me. You dont get it & I dont have time to explain it to you.”
I came across the tweet above and i had to say, “Well said, Elon James White, well said“. Unfortunately this kind of tweets always get some of my white friends on facebook in a twist. What is so unfortunate is that some of them think they are well meaning people who want equal rights for all. If only they would take a minute to do their research and understand how the society they live in works. Everyone should learn to see their own privilege, be it skin colour, sexual identity, sex birth, geographical location, religion or class.
To be blind to your privilege is to not understand or see how you benefit from the society due to your status, a status you might not be conscious of but which is enough to deny the persons who don’t have that status the benefits you get. Heck, it might even cause the persons their lives while you go around not even acknowledging that you have that privilege. Yes, it is frustrating.
A few of my very good white friends on social media think this is sad and they don’t like it when I put up such status calling out white privilege. What I must say again is that to me and most persons of colour, this is not only sad it is infuriatingly sad and makes us very angry. I am so tired of hearing privileged people whine about how we should include everyone in our minority rights campaigns.
When we talk about women’s rights, be sure a man would jump in and scream “What about men’s rights?”
When we talk about LGBT rights, a heterosexual person is bound to jump in and ask “What about heterosexual rights, we need heterosexual pride day!”
When we organise and mobilise for Black History Month, many white people jump in and whine “But there is no European History Month, we need white people’s history month!
Please, all these meaningless, brainless, blind privileged interruptions do get tiring!
Every day is heterosexual day.
Every damn month is white people’s month.
If those complaining do not understand why attention needs to be drawn to minority, underprivileged, under-represented groups, they should do their research.
If white people truly want to understand, they should make time out to use Google and find the many materials online that are available for free on these subject matters.
If with the abundance of evidence available on how police officers are more likely to stop and frisk a black person than a white person, how a black person is likely to be shot on mere suspicion than a white person or how a black teenager is likely to be arrested on suspicion of shoplifting before the security even consider suspecting the white teenagers in the shop, but my white friends are still butting in with “What about..” then my white friends should go do their research!
I can’t always be in the mood to keep explaining this over and over again. And in the light of all that is going on in #Ferguson and what happened to Trayvon Martin, and many other victims of racial profiling and white supremacy, I do not owe my privileged friends an education, they owe themselves and the society an education.
It is a sad world where your skin colour determines whether you get arrested alive, unharmed and escorted by the police after you shot innocent people or get police bullets rammed into you and your body taken away in a bin bag on mere suspicion that you could be a threat even though you were not carrying any weapon. My skin colour should not be a death sentence!
Black life matters.
Women rights matter.
LGBTI rights matter.
Black LGBTIs’ voices matter.
Bisexual Voices matter.
Transsexual voices matter.
Black feminists’ voices matter.
Atheists’ voices matter.
Black atheists’ voices matter.
Women Atheists’ voices matter.
Mental health patients’ voices matter
And the list goes on and on.
Yes Human life matters. However you have to see us as humans and equals before you can truly appreciate that our life and voices matter. Unfortunately, in this 21st century many of us are still fighting for the inalienable human right to be seen and considered as humans and equals.
Please don’t butt in when we try to assert this much talked about but elusive, inalienable human right.
Don’t drown our voices with your constant whining of “but what about…”
Don’t be blind to your privilege.