How to Tell the Difference Between Real Solidarity and ‘Ally Theater’
by Mia McKenzie, read her post here: www.blackgirldangerous.org
As a white person, I think it would be good for everyone trying to be 'allies' of P.O.C. to read the post linked above. It taught me a lesson or two (more really) on what I can do to be more supportive of P.O.C.
I posted some of the lessons I learned from her below. I posted them as reminders to myself. Please read Mia's post; there is much more to her post, and it is her experience.
1. Just shut up.
When a P.O.C shares about their frustrations/resentments about white people actions/behaviors, don't think I can be supportive with my opinions, experiences, or sharing my own challenges. Listen and learn, but don't say anything.
2. Do no more harm.
Don't tell a P.O.C. what negative thing might have been said about them or other P.O.C. Remember who I am trying to help and don't repeat a hurtful thing.
3. Be self-less.
Everything I do in support/solidarity with P.O.C, do quietly, secretly, and privately. I am not doing this work to get credit or 'cookies.'
4. The description "ally" is earned...something a P.O.C. might use for me, someday.
It isn't something I can call myself...ie. organic gardener, artist, English teacher, ally.
I will not be trusted by some P.O.C. until I do these things. Not doing any of them (doing the opposite) is just theatrics= 'ally theater', not real, not solidarity, not helpful.
I hope my blog, and things I put on it, is not 'ally theater' (AT)...I am trying to help myself and other white people with this resource and posting of my learnings. But if you think anything I write is AT, please tell me. I am here to learn. -DG
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