As social media starts to move away from the Black Lives Matter movement, and the anger and outrage you may have felt initially in the past two weeks (might) not be the only emotion you’re capable of feeling now, as a white person; as we continue to live each day going forward and we look back on the promises we made to the black community about being their allies, we are beginning to transition to the the part where we need to continue to do the work that we promised we’d do. We need to continue to act, through protests, donations, signing petitions and amplifying and supporting black voices.
But, we also need to continue to educate ourselves, so as we continue to fight, we understand why we are fighting and what we are fighting for and against.
This is my platform, where I talk about topics that are important to me, from books and writing to video games to mental health. But I also want it to be a place where I continue to grow as a person, a space where you don’t see me just speaking up while it’s “trending,” as I have done in the past. I want to continue to do the work and use this space to invite others to do the same. I want to continue to learn and mess up and apologize (because you will mess up as you’re learning) and do more work.
Starting today, I am going to be following the Lesson Plan for Being a Better Ally, created by Autumn Gupta with Bryanna Wallace’s oversight, which I found using the Black Lives Matter Carrd. It’s an amazing resource that allows you to choose how much time you have to dedicate to learning about racism and how to be an active ally, committing to a month of educating for yourself.
To be clear: this isn’t a complete-this-one-month-learning-module-and-suddenly-you’re-done-being-an-ally. Being an ally is a LIFELONG commitment. And I’m not sharing this as a way to be like, “Wow, look at all the work Nicole is doing.” No, I am sharing this as a way to help inform others of the resources available, to help encourage you to STOP asking your black friends (or strangers on the internet) what you can do to help (stop demanding their emotional labor when you can simply Google the answers and do the work YOURSELF) and instead encourage you to look RIGHT HERE, the resources have already been provided to you! And to invite any of my white and non-black readers who want to participate in this Lesson Plan alongside me to totally do so!
Starting next week, I plan to post each Monday about my thoughts and what I’ve learned from this, as a way to keep the conversation going, especially as the Black Lives Matter stops “trending.”
Because black lives mattering isn’t a trend.
It’s a movement that deserve lifelong support from white allies who have the power to change the system that forces us to need a movement to change it.
So, let’s start today. Let’s show up today. And tomorrow. And the next day. And the next.