Black Lives Matter : What I Can Do As Individual

(c) Header – Illustration by Sacrée Frangine
Estimated reading time: 4 minutes, 12 seconds.

These past days have been eye-opening, hurtful, frustrating and very uncomfortable. But it’s a discussion we all need to have and to acknowledge. Racism has been such an anchored problematic in our system that we are all fed up of it and comes to think that it’s 2020 and still, racism prevailed.

Black Lives Matter is an ideological and political intervention in a world where Black lives are systematically and intentionally targeted for demise. It is an affirmation of Black folks’ humanity, our contributions to this society, and our resilience in the face of deadly oppression. – Alicia Garza, Patrisse Cullors, and Opal Tometi — created a Black-centered political will and movement building project called #BlackLivesMatter.

In 2014, Mike Brown was murdered by Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson. And now, 6 years later, too many names have been put on the victims list of police brutality against the Black Community. George Floyd’s recent death was the drop that overflows the mud. It comes to a point where it becomes an international revendication and union to fight.

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With the information and technology development we have in 2020, hundreds and even thousands of resources you can find online and on several social media platforms on what to do and what not to do during this BLM. On that matter, I have found a very useful Google Doc that resumes all of the resources and petitions, donations, protests goals, etc.

AN INVITATION TO REFLECT

But today, I would like to invite you to sit down and use your critical thinking while assimilating information online. A lot of infographics are circulating, even dictating in a way, your behavior and your way of thinking, using picture to spread their own agendas. I invite you to sit back and reflect whenever you encounter a new information.

Does this look credible? What do they gain by mentioning it  ? Where’s the source coming from? What’s the main message of this post?

And also really reflect on what you can do for the movement. Yes you shared a story and post it on Instagram? Good, but at the end of the day how did you really contribute?

Did you take concrete actions, did you sign petitions and donate, and give back to the community? How’s your everyday life would be affected by what you are doing? These are real questions I’m STILL asking myself and although there are different agendas inside the same movement, I should educate myself, research and find one purpose that I can align with.

BLOGGERS AND OUR PLATFORMS

I appreciate all the constructive discussions and feedback I had so far, I respect that people have different opinions. The question is touchy when it comes to bloggers and influencers, people expect us to speak up as a duty and having a platform, but what they don’t know is we are being bombarded by all sides : “you should post this”, “no don’t post that you don’t know anything”, “you disappoint me because you say that” and some would even take on racist slurs just to prove a point (which in my opinion goes against of what everything we are trying to do here..). 

If everyone really wants to contribute to the movement, people should stop forcing influencers and let them take their times to find the right words. Because most of the times, we are here repeating words a THOUSAND times in our heads to be careful to not say the wrong things. For people who came up to me and harassed me to post a black square to show my worthiness : If the cause is really important to me, do I really need to justify in every single post at every second what I did to contribute? Would you do that to your friends coming up to them and ask them «give me the receipt of all the things you have contributed? »No, because if you really believe in something, you do it you don’t even have to ask for permissions, and waiting people to validate you.

That said, I do recognize I have a platform and I have decided to share the information that I find the most useful to my followers, as expressing my point of view as clearly as possible. I will share links to resources, I will share reading recommendations because I think that is one way to you can contribute to amplify Black Lives Matter everyday and educate yourself, I will share black owned business because as a food blogger and food photographer, Black Owned Restaurants need to have more visibility and I will INSIST on you staying safe amid of COVID19, if you really want to attend protests, please follow the safety guidelines : wear a mask if social distancing is limited or impossible, wash your hands often, let the signs shout for you (shouting increase the risk of contamination because of the virus circulates in droplets). Here’s a link that resumes it : https://globalnews.ca/news/7015338/george-floyd-protests-coronavirus/

Some people would agree and some people would disagree with me for writing this post and that’s okay we are humans we have opinions, but I needed to express this matter and I think it is important for people to also ask the same questions.

I invite you to  take this week to learn about the movement and ask yourself questions, it’s the right time to be uncomfortable and it’s the right time to spark discussions.

Sincerely,

Trang

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