Dear White Feminists. 2018 is coming.

Dear White Feminists,

Hello, we need to talk about 2018.

It has been a minute since I’ve talked to y’all directly and the new year is rapidly approaching so I’d like to give you with some things to take into the new year.

Put your hardhat on.

1.) Let’s leave the idea that all you need to do to be anti-racist is say you’re not a racist. Just like when men claim to be feminists and balk at doing the work, you cannot claim anti-racism then start crying when it’s time to get to work.

2.) Also, how shall I put this? Ahem. Before you decide you’ve come up with the most amazing, earth shattering thing ever and you are about to become a #hastag trailblazer, stop. Google it first. Do you see a WOCs name on things? Don’t pretend like you suddenly can’t google search for two minutes and give credit where it is due. Be inspired by women like Tarana Burke but don’t steal. Let’s stop that.

3.) Please, for the love of all things fluffy and perfect, stop weaponizing your hurt feelings. Stop using them and your pain when instructed, told off, ignored or had boundaries placed upon by WOC especially Black women to silence us. That is so 1840 can we not?

4.) Please stop pretending you don’t understand what words are or that you don’t literally likely have at least two computer type devices and google and and and eleventy other million resources when WOC are saying things. Stop sealioning 2018. More so if you claim any professional relationship with things like writing, teaching, etc. If you are too busy to google something for two minutes but not so busy you have the time to spend ten minutes making four inch comments on Facebook, stop. Leave it in 2017.

5.) In the context of discussions about racism, please heavily reconsider your use of the following phrases and words until you understand the implications of what you’re saying: why can’t we act with love? BULLYING! YOU ARE BEING DIVISIVE! I DON’T HAVE A RACIST BONE IN MY BODY! Etc. If you don’t follow, go back to #4 get to the google and read about tone policing and then read what WOC have to say about how it makes us feel when you do it. Stop.

6.) Last one because I don’t want to overwhelm y’all. If in the midst of a shitshow of racism etc, don’t tell WOC especially Black women how strong we are. Ask if we’re okay. If you don’t understand why, I urge you to think about why we don’t seem at all fragile, breakable or human and work that shit out.

2018 is looking back at 2017 and is pretty ready to say, OH you did all that shit? HOLD MY BEER BRO!

I will go out on a limb and speak for a lot of us othered folks. We cannot and do not want to continue giving free, amazing scholarly lessons on basic don’t be a racist. It is damn near 2018 and our fucking world is burning. Want to be the best gosh darned intersectional (also please interrogate your use of that word and if you don’t already know, find out about where it comes from) feminist ever?

Do the work.

If trying to do 1–6 is too hard you can look at things this way. If doing the dirty work of not contributing to the white, cis-heteropatriarchy and not supporting the marginalization of people who aren’t you is too much, leave us alone. Don’t come on our statuses to argue or call us racists when we point out problematic shit. Don’t get in our inboxes to chide us for being “mean”, don’t doxx us, don’t try to take our livelihoods, just leave us alone. You’re too busy. You’re too important and we’re the real problems and you can ignore us and go fix other stuff.

Otherwise, my friends. Get your hardhat and protective gear because 2018 is coming out swinging and we need to be ready.

Love,

Shannon