Updated: Sep 16, 2022
I have a lot of my own issues with discrimination.
Like I know I have racism and fatphobia to work out.
I had my ex of less than 3 months (I lost my virginity to the guy and less than a week later he dumped me anyway) Morgan Hernandez of 12 years ago basically tell me statutory rape wasn’t a thing when I tried to explain to him why I didn’t want anything to do with him anymore after he hit me up again (we had a 2 year 10 month age gap, I was 16 & he was 19).
And the things he said triggered me so much I went off on him body shaming (he had also done it to me). Like I really said a bunch of fucked up shit. They were true shit. But it was hurtful shit. And I did it because he is never going to change his mind on these issues, he is even worse as an adult, and I think I am the type of person who does want people to be punished when there is no system of justice.
So what does that make me?
Luckily for you I have no position of power, and no major influence on anything besides myself.
I am a deaf queer woman business owner dealing with mental health so there is no system in which my history or experience allows me a position of power beyond my whiteness.
Anyone that works with me wants to work with me, and doesn’t have to be around me if they don’t want to be.
I have what I need to do to get by, and that’s all I wanna focus on.
The people I call out are either public figures themselves, or have been/still are a part of systemic organizations that dismiss human rights.
So for me when I deal with these moments of conflict, I either 1: explode right then, or 2: try to hold it back and just end up causing a bigger explosion later.
For anyone who wants to say any type of mental health/go get help/therapy commentary, fuck you. You don’t understand mental health if you think it’s not a lifelong journey or know that trauma comes out as a reaction.
But yes, people do call me out for my shit too. I can’t name everything I ever did wrong or I’d be here all day. Just cause someone calls out shit when they see it, or are triggered by discrimination doesn’t mean they don’t realize their own discrimination.
The point of antidiscrimination is knowing we all have some form of intersectional discrimination to work through, that we will all slip up due to colonialized cultural assimilation and whitewashing of history.
It’s how we react to those slip ups.
Some people don’t think it’s appropriate for me to call out or act aggressively when triggered. I think those ableists are the same people that want issues taken up by a channel so the channel doesn’t have to change. Wanting to save face publicly over dealing with an issue is not resolution.
If you think protesting only has to be organized, and not possible in your daily interactions, I don’t think you get the point of protesting.
And no, I am not saying anything bad about organized protests. I love them. I’m saying people protesting individual actions, comments, etc. are just as valid. It shouldn’t have to take individuals organizing for individuals to be taken seriously.
If we took the problems of individuals seriously, they wouldn’t need to organize protests.
The reason organized protests work is because of the individuals bringing power in numbers to the cause. I believe more individuals can bring the power in numbers to the social issues in their everyday life than who choose to, because many put their own gain over their peers’ rights.
Not everyone can speak out, because some are the ones being oppressed in those situations. I’m speaking strictly on people who can change a situation, yet won’t.
We can discuss peaceful versus destructive tactics all day. What I will say is I started off peaceful and then got destructive. I hope this does not come off as a comparison to MLK, because obviously that is inappropriate, but rather on my thought process of how he inspired a movement for change.
I want to point out that Dr. Martin Luther King never stopped believing in non violent protests. He said in 1967 at Stanford that “Let me say as I've always said, and I will always continue to say, that riots are socially destructive and self-defeating.”
I think Dr. King recognized that when it gets to the point of a riot, we are ultimately trying to tear down the only system available for ourselves. I think he fought so hard for so long not to riot, because if you can only burn down part of the system you still have the same people in charge of rebuilding it. When you hurt others because they hurt you, endless retaliation is possible.
What about when others hurt you, even though you never hurt them?
MLK also thought we must condemn social injustice as vigorously as we condemn riots, as well as that “In the final analysis, a riot is the language of the unheard. And what is it that America has failed to hear?”
At his time he said America was failing to hear what Black people need. He said then in ‘67, “The promises of freedom and justice have not been met… A large segment of white society are more concerned about tranquility and status quo than about justice, equality, and humanity…. As long as America postpones justice, we stand in the position of having these recurrences of violence and riots over and over again. Social justice and progress are the absent veritas of riot prevention…” Imagine what he would think now?
Because the peace is still being disturbed today, just not for privileged abled cis het white men.
A lot of people argue whether MLK was pro or against riots. I think he just realized before the rest of us that riots are trauma coming out as a reaction, and that if we stopped traumatizing people they wouldn’t be reacting this way.
Why is MLK and Civil Rights my go to reference for social movement? Because Susan Bitch Anthony + suffragettes were mostly racist that only fought for white women at the end of the day. National Association of Deaf? Claim to be first human rights org since 1860s, but it was like 1965 til Black people could join?
I know there’s some intersectionality issues with ableism that I wonder if it’s racist of me to speak on due to white power dynamics trying to control the Black community. But I think those issues all come down from slavery and segregation, having to mask disabilities to not be punished for them.
So yeah I keep thinking of this 1967 Stanford speech. Dr. King not only spoke on his time, but also predicted the next 55 years of history. It is ironic how white people use the “riots are socially destructive and self-defeating” words of MLK to dismiss Black lives, while completely ignoring what he said about how “a large segment of white society are more concerned about tranquility and status quo than about justice, equality, and humanity.”
Until tranquility and status quo are no longer as important as dismissing the voices of the oppressed, there is only peace for oppressors under the status quo. So do you really want tranquility or do you want to not have to change?
People love to blame the traumatized for overreacting, but hate admitting they were the cause of the chain reaction. There is no right or wrong way to react to trauma. But we can start changing by dealing with social trauma at its source through equitable autonomy, housing, education, healthcare, employment, social norms, and access.
In this country built on Indigenous genocide and slavery, it feels like it is unlikely people will change. The best I know to do is to not tolerate this shit in my own life or from anyone in my life.
I don’t give a fuck what you believe about me and my life. Look up the Dr. King 1967 Stanford speech, women’s rights, NAD commentary yourself.