Anti-Racism Reading List - 15 December 2021
10+ powerful articles worth discussing and sharing
It’s that time again - time for a roundup of some of the most interesting articles I’ve come across related to racism, anti-racism, and diversity. If you’re new around here, here’s where you can catch up on past reading list posts. If you’ve been here for a while, it’s time to dive in!
1. The Ways We Value People by Sherry Kappel
I always enjoy reading Our Human Family Weekly, as it has such a wonderful range of perspectives, and operates from a place of love. This editorial examined notions of friendship and allyship, and this quote particularly struck me:
“Being an ally is not something for which we white folks get a gold star; being an ally is helping to right a wrong of which we are in fact a part!”
2. A Black Woman Invented Home Security. Why Did It Go So Wrong?
I include this story because it’s something I didn’t know, and it’s a cautionary tale about how technology can easily escape the intention of its creator. The article also makes this telling point:
“No amount of advances in technology will change the basic truth that surveillance and carceral technology exist to serve those in control.”
3. “Allies & All Lies”: A 5-Part Series by Theresa M. Robinson
In this article, originally published as a series on LinkedIn, Theresa M. Robinson questions the notion of allyship, and highlights some of the performativity that’s happened:
“The *allies* that hash-tagged their way into the spotlight have long since packed up their #BLM tee shirts and #socialmedia banners and returned to *business as usual*…..until the next *shocker.*
Meanwhile, Bl@ck people are like……
❗️”WHAT THE FAUX?!”
You see, we got the *RESUME* button.
The *RESUME* button is unsafe and deadly for us.
What’s needed is a *STOP* button followed by a *START ANEW* button.”
4. Black People Built Social Media, But We're The Least Protected Across Platforms by Mark S. Luckie
This is an issue every active anti-racist I know has experienced, which is why it stood out to me. Luckie gets right to the heart of the issue in the following quote:
“Black people around the world have long voiced complaints of having their posts taken down and accounts suspended or closed without recourse, just because their posts addressed Black issues. On the other hand, white users are weaponizing what are supposed to be helpful features, like reporting violent posts, to trigger the silencing of Black voices with false accusations of racism.All the while, tech companies continue to sit idly by, hiding behind self-proclaimed unbiased artificial intelligence.”
Bonus: I started collecting some of the evidence of LinkedIn censorship in the following article, and have been talking to several people about how we tackle this. I can see this being a huge issue in 2022.
Read The Ongoing Evidence that LinkedIn is Censoring Black Creators, and feel free to comment with your own evidence of suppression.
5. Honouring Myself: A Liberated Love Note by Kimberley John-Morgan
In this article, Kimberley John-Morgan has a message for all those who have failed to take action on their learning:
“Time served as your "Black friend" has done nothing to reform your behaviour or elevate me to being your friend who is Black. Instead, the collection of my words suffocated under your apathy, ego, and indifference. As such, I will no longer waste my time on those who "need more time" to "listen and learn."”
6. 5 Key Points For Delivering Race Equality That You Cannot Afford To Ignore by Carmen Morris
As we move towards 2022, performative diversity initiatives are out, and starting from a base of acknowledging the work that has to be done is in, says Carmen Morris.
“It may be tempting for those in leadership positions to think that they have all the answers, but as the Black Lives Matter protests have taught us, solutions to the issues of racism must take into account input from those who have been affected. This means that the days of tick boxing, as a way of showing support for marginalized colleagues are being challenged.”
7. Generational Research Needs to Take an Intersectional Approach – Here’s Why and How by Raven Solomon
What I love about this article is not just that it made me think, but that it provides practical tips on bringing a lens of intersectionality to generational research. And, as the quote below shows, this has practical benefits:
“Consistently considering intersecting identities in generational research and data reporting will help us better understand the groups we seek to lead, motivate, engage and connect with. It will provide more accurate assessments of generational characteristics, trends, etc., leading to deeper use and better results. As the old saying goes, “garbage in, garbage out.” The more we know and the deeper we know it, the better our output will be.”
8. What is ‘racial lighting’ – and why is it so damaging for POC? by Rachelle Carrié
Rachelle Carrié explores what racial gaslighting is and how it affects people of color.
“Navigating racial lighting – the constant questioning, twisting, and undermining of what you know to be true – has a negative compound effect on people of color. Not only are they experiencing racism, but they also have to try to fight it while people around them constantly tell them that it doesn’t happen.”
9. The Kyle Rittenhouse Verdict Puts Us All On Notice by Marley K.
If you’re subscribed to this newsletter, I’m going to assume you know why Black people were upset about the verdict. In this article, Marley K pulls no punches, spelling out exactly what this means for white would-be allies, including this call to action:
“For the White people all in, be all in. Stand up, change how you vote. Demand accountability from the top to the bottom. You can go into places and spaces we cannot.”
10. Here's Why We're Tired of White Folks Playing Dumb About Racism by Allison Gaines
It’s been 400 years - how much longer must it take for white people to not just learn about racism, but DO something about it, asks Allison Gaines.
“White people play dumb about racism because it shields them from having to do the work to create an anti-racist society. Turning a blind eye is so much more convenient than doing the work. But, White silence maintains anti-Black sentiment and violence.”
Did any of these articles particularly resonate with you? Feel free to share your thoughts in the comment thread.
Thanks for reading,
© Sharon Hurley Hall, 2021. All Rights Reserved.
Cover photo courtesy of Canva.
I am an anti-racism writer, a professional B2B writer and blogger, and co-host of The Introvert Sisters podcast. If you value my perspective, please consider upgrading to a paid subscription.
Great list and summary. Thank you. LOVE: “Being an ally is not something for which we white folks get a gold star; being an ally is helping to right a wrong of which we are in fact a part!” I get it.