October 17, 2019

I'm Not Baking Up Woke Cookies and Handing Them Out

Some time ago, I bought my sister and I matching t-shirts that said, "I am not your magical Negro. Knowing me does not make you cool."

It is worn out - it was not good quality - and I should probably get a new one. I still need to wear it, just in a bit of a different way.

It is hard, as a Person of Colour, to share stuff specifically for or about my community on Facebook, without white people occasionally popping by to dump some white guilt on it, or shed their fragile white tears all over the place. I think about it every time I post, because depending on the topic, their silence will also speak volumes and I have to decide if I am ready for that today. Basically, I think about race every day. I live my race every day. And I have to consider my actions and speech concerning race every single day, every single post, every single blog article, every single interaction.

I recently had a white friend ask me if I considered race after I posted a video of a Philippino dancing for a Black American woman on a cruise. Yes. Yes, I indeed had. I considered both the class and racial issues. The power imbalance. The All The Things. Like I do every minute of every goddamn day, thanks for asking. 

I could be wrong, but I think white people only think about race when they sorta have to. And maybe it crosses their mind now and again and they have this wonderful woke revelation. Which is cool - I'm like, so proud of you, but please stop asking POC to pat you on the head each time you figure this shit out. Because for us, it's old news. It's very similar to a child declaring, "that's a circle!" and the first time your kid does this, you are super amazed. The next 20 times your kid says this, you're like, "ok, nice Jimmy." White people run to message or tell POC, "racism exists! Holy crap, I just saw it now!" and POC are trying to be as polite as possible like, "gooooood job!" and not sound too condescending.

But I am not going to hold people's hands through this anymore. I am done drying up white tears. And I am sooooo done with white people commenting with their performative wokeness, asking me for cookies for it. The same way I am not your magical Negro, I am not the giver of the woke cookies. Stop asking me for them. I don't even have a recipe for them. Not even sure what they would be made of. Raisins and mayonnaise?

Most of all, stop asking POC to praise and validate you. I'm glad when people come to important realizations. I'm even more happy when people take action and call out/in other white people. But stop trying to win points with us. Just dance like nobody is watching, or off the beat, or whatever you need to do.   

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