Q: What do I do about a friend who is selectively blind to racism and CA?

 

So many of our friends are works-in-progress. Many of us begin our social and civil justice activism as extremely naive and problematic assholes. Gettin’ fired up for everything and nothing at the same time. Occasionally we will think we find kinship when really we find a mix of performance activists and these people:

                             

 

 

Mostly though, these friends are trying to navigate their own shit and it’s hard to comprehend that these systems are manipulating every damn thing. One of the greatest manipulation techniques is straight ignorance. When you don’t know any better, it’s hard to do any better. Within this growth of social awareness, we cultivate relationships that depend on us to maintain a level of continuing knowledge and broad-mindedness. Indifference, I may add, is a warning sign…


Broadmindedness, when it means indifference to right and wrong, eventually ends in a hatred of what is right.

—  Fulton J. Sheen

 


Is your friend POC or non POC? In the event that you, Inquirer, are a POC and this friend is not, eventually you are going to have to ask yourself if this person is actually a friend. If your friend is consciously aware of certain tiers of racism and cultural appropriation…but is apologetic or capes for other kinds of similar or equally damaging and offensive behavior…you are seeking a higher level of consistency and responsibility. That’s great news for you, but it may not be your lil friend’s time to do the same. If they react to being called in (or called the fuck out, if necessary) by deflecting, centering or gaslighting on the regular, they might as well kick rocks because they aren’t seeing their complicity in the oppression of others.

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If your friend is a fellow POC, the same rules apply. Depending on your cultural connections, working on reciprocity of solidarity would be a solid way to gain the accountability you are seeking.

 

 If they aren’t willing to put in the work that you are, you have Petty Betty’s permission to wave ‘em in they face.

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