In February of 1926, Black History Month was founded by Carter G Woodson to honor the history, legacy, and achievements of Black people worldwide. Then, on January 31st, 2011, I decided to make people uncomfortable by doing a yearly blog dictating what my white friends aren't allowed to do during Black History Month.
My blog has been read live on The View by Whoopi Goldberg, shared by thousands of people every year, and hated upon by random old racist dudes who haven't laughed since 7th Heaven was still on the air. Love it or hate it, I'm back at it again with "10 Things My White Friends Don't Get to Do During Black History Month:"
Don’t call out black vegans for not being vegan enough. Let me tell you something... Not all vegans are "Ethical Vegans." We don't care if this offends you. While you, white Cruelty-Free comrade, might have the privilege of focusing your energy toward fighting for the ethical treatment of animals, most of us Black vegans are still fighting for the ethical treatment of BLACK PEOPLE. Y'all get all up in arms when a celebrity wears fur on the red carpet, but you don't keep that same energy when a person of color is a victim of police brutality. So no, we're not all gonna stop wearing Adidas and Nike for you, fam. (It takes a lot of nerve to assume everyone can afford to throw away all their shoes and jackets and replace it with faux leather. You tripping.) Not only is the current movement of Black people eating more veggies better for our health as compared to the foods we grew up eating, (many of which are foods that entered the African American diet during slavery,) it is also lowering our collective carbon footprint and negatively impacting the sales of meat and dairy products. So no, we're not gonna say "Plant Based" instead of vegan just to make you feel better. If you are so culturally insensitive that you can't accept it, then please understand that the same indifference you feel toward us is what meat eaters feel toward animals. Hypocrite, much?
Don’t wear popular black hairstyles and claim that “the vikings” did it first. You know you can just admit that you were inspired by a Black girl, right? Black History Month is the perfect time to stop lying.
Don’t be a "blackfish." If you are a decent, intelligent white human, you'd probably never dream of doing something as offensive as giving yourself a makeover so that you can pass as black. Some folks are stupid, though. Several popular Instagram influencers got called out for it in 2018, and some even went so far as to have body modifications to look like a good ole-fashioned thick black girl. Since race isn't a f*cking cosplay, and because it's not ok to adopt Black aesthetics without giving a damn about Black issues, I hope nobody who is reading this would ever think to do something so corny and offensive and trashy and inauthentic and corny. Did I mention that this sh*t it corny?
Don’t call yourself an ally if you aren’t actually an ally. The phrase "intersectional feminist" looks awesome in your Twitter bio, doesn't it? Posting "Black Lives Matter" on your Instagram got you hella likes, huh? But how much do you really know about Black issues? And more importantly, what have you done to affect change? If you can't answer that, you ain't no ally... you're just a lie. All of my close non-Black friends are allies, and I know that because their actions speak louder than their Twitter fingers. If your real life politics aren't lining up with your hashtags, you need to sit this month out, buddy.
Don’t assume all Black people are "Liberals" and Democrats. Some of us are Republicans. Some are Independent. And some of us don't give a f*ck and are just tired of having to vote for the lesser of two evils. Consider yourself informed.
Don’t call the police on Black people for existing. Look, Caucasian homey... if you wanna ruin your life by calling the cops on Black people for cooking, reading, breathing, or consisting of complex molecular structures at a subatomic level, that's your choice. But don't do it this month. If you insist upon loosing your job and being laughed at worldwide, please wait until March so that we can really give your racism the attention it deserves.
Don’t build the wall. Y'all crazy. This is dumb.
Don’t whitesplain. What is whitesplaining, you might ask? This excerpt from The Body Is Not An Apology details it PERFECTLY: "Like with other forms of privileged explaining, including mansplaining, people who whitesplain have been conditioned to believe that they’re somehow more qualified to speak about a marginalized group than a person who belongs to that group.” Do you get it? Or do you need me to blacksplain it to you?
Don't act like slavery and segregation and Jim Crow were hella long ago. They weren't. My grandma picked cotton, fam. This ain't the hill you wanna die on, at least not during Black History Month. I'm just gonna let you ponder this image for a minute, white friend... and keep in mind the fact that High Schools in East Texas didn't integrate until 1971.
Don’t get mad just because everything isn’t for you. As a melanated, nappy headed American, I have had an entire life of lack of representation to teach me that not everything is made to appeal to me. Since whiteness no longer being the default is a new premise for many, I can understand why it might be a bit hard for some folks to accept this. Some of you just haven't adapted well to life in a post-Black Panther world. I empathize with your white tears. But your cries of "What about ME" will go unheard during Black History Month.
Because this is my 9th year doing this Black History Month blog on ChicagoNow, I already know what some of you white citizens are thinking. Please allow me to address your grievances in advance:
"This is reverse racism!" That term doesn't mean what you think it means.
"Why don't we have White History Month?" We do. It's called January, March, April, May, June, July, August September, October, November, & December.
"How dare you tell me what to do!" Because Black History Month.
"If a white person wrote a blog like this someone would call Al Sharpton!" I double dog dare you.
"Vikings did wear braids and dreadlocks first!" Why you always lying?
"Dark skin and braids don't only belong to Black people!" You're right. They belonged to slave masters until Lincoln issued the final Emancipation Proclamation on January 1st, 1863. Since then, our stuff belongs to us.
"Slavery was hundreds of years ago, get over it!" How about you hand over your privilege and we call it even?
"There were white slaves, too!" So?
"You're bad and everything you think is bad so I want you to feel bad." Shut up before I marry your son and give you half pro-Black grandchildren.
In my real life, I'm an artist & mental health activist.
Follow me everywhere at @nikkiLynette
I hope you enjoyed my BHM blog, white friends. If you want more things to be offended by, please check out the previous 8 blogs celebrating this fine month of Black excellence!
- 10 Things my White friends better not complain about during Black History Month
- 10 Things That Will Make Me Dump My White Friends During Black History Month
- 10 things my White friends BETTER NOT ruin during Black History Month
- 10 things my White friends aren't allowed to lie about during Black History Month
- 10 things my White friends can't do on social media during Black History Month
- 10 things my White friends BETTER NOT discuss during Black History Month
- 10 things my White Friends should do for me during Black History Month
- 10 things my White friends aren't allowed to do during Black History Month
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