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as a privileged white woman, i realize that my voice is not the one that needs to be heard right now. i am listening, learning, reading, watching, signing, calling, donating. i am learning my place in this and how to be a better ally to the black community. . i also recognize that the real change is going to come from the conversations and the actions that are happening offline and taken to the real world. the ones people on social media can’t see, when we can’t perform through a story post or a retweet. it’s in the uncomfortable convos. the difficult ones. the self investigating ones. the ones about the unpacking, undoing, unlearning of centuries of systemic oppression and racism that is engrained in the very fibers of our beings and our systems. there is so much work to do. . though i cannot tell anyone how to feel, i do have to say this: the fight for racial injustice right now is not a topic that is up for debate. this is a humanitarian issue. people are dying. it is not a matter of which party you identify with, or your news outlet of choice or if you are left or right. caring about the life of someone else does not make you political, it makes you human. it means you have a god damn heart. and i’m begging you to fucking use it. it costs you absolutely nothing to be able to say to someone “i see you, i hear you, you deserve to live and your life matters.” empathy is free. . and if you don’t know what to say, that is ok, i don’t either. but we have to be willing to make mistakes, and then go back and correct it. it is more important to show up imperfectly than to not show up at all. and when we’re not sure what to say...we will listen. to Black children, Black women, Black men, non-binary Black people, queer Black people, trans Black people. ALL of them. because their lives literally depend on it. be on the right side of history. . i will keep sharing resources, and amplifying voices that are more important than my own. #BLACKLIVESMATTER
July 15, 2020
Black Lives Matter Movement
I feel like it's time to get back to Instagram and maybe even blogging. Not really blogging though. Posting here just seemed like the easiest way to get all of my thoughts down in one place without rambling on my Instagram story.
A little over a month ago, I posted the black square with the majority of other users on Instagram. But that square didn't feel like enough to me. I felt like the right thing for me to do was to be silent and listen and learn. Everything I thought about posting even for a second felt wrong, like there was nothing that I could say that was right or helpful. I chose to mute my Instagram so that my posts wouldn't be diluting the actually important things that were being posted and so that I could take some time to reflect on how I can be better. I didn't plan out an exact amount of time to stay silent. I waited until I felt uncomfortable not posting, because I often go weeks without posting. Once I actually wanted to post again, I made myself wait longer to continue focusing on more important things and ways to better myself. I now feel comfortable to start posting my normal content again, but first I want to share a few things that have been meaningful to me. I'm saving them here to share with all of you and also for me to have easy access to come back and reflect.
This is the best way that I can sum up how I feel about the Black Lives Matter movement:
If I were talking about how Pancreatic Cancer, which just reached a 10% 5 year survival rate and killed my dad, is the worst cancer and needs more attention and more funding, and anyone came up to me and said, "That sucks, but all cancer sucks and needs more attention." I'd probably punch that person in the dick. Yes, good job, all cancer sucks, but Pancreatic Cancer barely gets any attention (comparatively) and is statistically the worst one. People who have been affected by or had a loved one affected by any other type of cancer have every right to disagree with me, of course. But would you go out of your way to post something against Pancreatic Cancer getting more attention? Would you hang an anti-Pancreatic Cancer flag? Probably not. Would you attack me on social media for my opinion? Maybe, but you'd look like a real dick if you did.
Now replace all the Pancreatic Cancers in here with just being a person of color in America.
Things that I've been reflecting on:
This one may have sparked my Instagram silence. Ivirlei talks about standing up and being uncomfortable. She talks about a lot of what I'm still working on. I also love how much you can tell that she truly cares and has thought all of this through.
I shoot with Tiffany regularly, and she has been an amazing guide through these past weeks. She has been heavily advocating for all types of clothing, cosmetic, and other brands to be more diverse. As a photographer, I quickly notice when a brand is one dimensional with the people who model their clothing, but Tiffany is actually taking action to make this change by calling brands out.
Mindy Kaling reshared this, and I feel like it perfectly captures how I've been feeling.
I love Chicks in the Office, and I have loved their stand. This speech meant a lot to me, and inspired my thoughts on how this relates to Pancreatic Cancer.
Fletcher is an AMAZING singer, and I love the caption of this post because it is how I've been feeling too.
I don't know how I came across this post. It was probably something that I saw get shared, but it definitely resonated with me and reminded me that this is similar to how different people grieve in different ways.