If You're Wondering How To Talk About Black People And White People, Here Are 5 Things To Keep In Mind

In this great big world, each and every one of us has privilege. I may be a gay black person, but I'm still a man. I hold advantages that women don't. So when I help a woman out through one of my more feminist posts, I have to keep certain things in mind to remain a good ally, a person who wants to fight for the equality of a marginalized group they're not a part of.Let's make sure that when we help friends who are LGBT, people of color, women, or whoever else wants to smite the patriarchy, we're actually helping.

In case you can't watch the video, here's Upworthy badass woman Franchesca Ramsey with five tips for all of us so we can be good allies.

(An ally is a person who wants to fight for the equality of a marginalized group they're not a part of.)


1. Understand your privilege.

There are some things in life you will not experience or ever have to think about just because of who you are.

It's kind of like those horses that have those blinders on. They can see just fine. There's just a whole bunch of stuff on the side that they don't even know exists.

For example, there are currently 34 states where you can legally be fired for being gay or trans.

I know.

"As a straight cis woman, those are things that I don't have to ever think about if I don't want to. I'm not going to be fired because I'm straight, and I'm not going to be fired because I'm cis. Before I can fight for the right of others, I have to understand what rights I have and others don't."

2. Listen and do your homework.

It sounds like a no-brainer, but it's not possible for you to learn if you aren't willing to listen.

What she said.

Get caught up on the issues that are important to the communities you want to support.

3. Speak up but not over.

If the fight for equality was a girl group, the ally wouldn't be the lead singer or the second lead singer. They'd be Michelle.

An ally's job is to support. You want to make sure that you use your privilege and your voice to educate others. But make sure to do it in such a way that does not speak over the community members that you're trying to support or take credit for things that they are already saying.

This isn't Mario Kart. Stay in your lane.

4. Realize that you're going to make mistakes and apologize when you do.

Nobody is perfect. Unlearning problematic things takes time and work. So you are bound to mess up and trip and fall.

But don't worry. You can brush yourself off and get right back up.

Just remember that it's not about your intent. It's about your impact. So when you get called out, make sure to listen, apologize, commit to changing your behavior, and move forward.

5. The most important thing on this list is remember that ally is a verb.

Saying you're an ally is not enough. You've got to do the work.

One through four, one through four.

You'll be the best ally around in no time.

More
Courtesy of Houseplant.

In America, one dumb mistake can hang over your head forever.

Nearly 30% of the American adult population — about 70 million people — have at least one criminal conviction that can prevent them from being treated equally when it comes to everything from job and housing opportunities to child custody.

Twenty million of these Americans have felony convictions that can destroy their chances of making a comfortable living and prevents them from voting out the lawmakers who imprisoned them.

Many of these convictions are drug-related and stem from the War on Drugs that began in the U.S. '80s. This war has unfairly targeted the minority community, especially African-Americans.

Keep Reading Show less
Culture

Climate change is happening because the earth is warming at an accelerated rate, a significant portion of that acceleration is due to human activity, and not taking measures to mitigate it will have disastrous consequences for life as we know it.

In other words: Earth is heating up, it's kinda our fault, and if we don't fix it, we're screwed.

This is the consensus of the vast majority of the world's scientists who study such things for a living. Case closed. End of story.

How do we know this to be true? Because pretty much every reputable scientific organization on the planet has examined and endorsed these conclusions. Thousands of climate studies have been done, and multiple peer-reviewed studies have been done on those studies, showing that somewhere between 84 and 97 percent of active climate science experts support these conclusions. In fact, the majority of those studies put the consensus well above 90%.

Keep Reading Show less
Nature
via James Anderson

Two years ago, a tweet featuring the invoice for a fixed boiler went viral because the customer, a 91-year-old woman with leukemia, received the services for free.

"No charge for this lady under any circumstances," the invoice read. "We will be available 24 hours to help her and keep her as comfortable as possible."

The repair was done by James Anderson, 52, a father-of-five from Burnley, England. "James is an absolute star, it was overwhelming to see that it cost nothing," the woman's daughter told CNN.

Keep Reading Show less
Heroes

I live in a family with various food intolerances. Thankfully, none of them are super serious, but we are familiar with the challenges of finding alternatives to certain foods, constantly checking labels, and asking restaurants about their ingredients.

In our family, if someone accidentally eats something they shouldn't, it's mainly a bit of inconvenient discomfort. For those with truly life-threatening food allergies, the stakes are much higher.

I can't imagine the ongoing stress of deadly allergy, especially for parents trying to keep their little ones safe.

Keep Reading Show less
popular