Listening to Marginalized Groups

As a person of color, it’s not okay for a white person to tell me what is or is not racist. They are never going to be on the receiving end of racism and they will never understand fully what it’s like. This doesn’t mean that they can’t have an opinion, weigh in and ask questions, but it does mean that as an ally their first concern should be listening and learning.

bookmarkchronicles

It’s been about a year since I chose to cut off someone that I once considered a friend. This person reblogged something that I found offensive on a blog that we shared. The intention wasn’t to be offensive, but this is a case of intent vs impact – Just because you mean well doesn’t mean you aren’t causing harm. At first, I wasn’t going to say anything (because I knew that they meant well) but then another friend mentioned it first, so I chimed in.

This “friend” didn’t get mad at the person who actually brought it up but somehow was mad at me. While I explained what was offensive about the reblog and even put it in terms of their own struggles, they refused to admit they were wrong. Eventually they apologized but it wasn’t a real apology. It was one of those “I’m saying sorry because I know…

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3 thoughts on “Listening to Marginalized Groups

  1. Laura Beth says:

    I mentioned this on Rae’s post, but I consider myself to be a white ally. I have a bad habit of talking people’s ears off, but as I’ve gotten older, I’ve learned that it’s better to shut my mouth and open my ears. Listening and learning are so important. If more people would choose to do that, I believe our world would be a better place. I strive to listen and learn every single day.

    Liked by 2 people

    • thingscarlaloves says:

      Same here!! I try my very best, and I try not to get upset, because it’s usually not about me, and if it is, then maybe I need to be modifying my behaviour because someone’s telling me it’s offensive/racist/etc. I’ve learnt so much from Rae.

      I think you do an amazing job. You’re incredibly empathetic, and you always take your time to write comments and responses. Not everyone does that, and I think it clearly shows you value what someone else is saying.

      Like

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