Tonight we are going to a beginner’s dance class done by a friend of ours.
A few weeks ago I gave the guy doing the class a 20 minute drunken lecture about how I’m afraid of dancing (because I’m afraid I’ll look like my mother and people will look at me) and so he has to be really nice to me because I will be terrified and blah blah…
But every time I’ve seen him since he’s nicely grabbed my hand and said “It will be okay! You’ll come and it will be fun, and I promise to be nice.” Which has made me feel better.
(I am also afraid of the people who teach physical classes.)
Since my husband works for The Man (Big Oil) they get a lot of free food delivered to their office. Today, they have a ton of Panera sandwiches.
He’s bringing me some for dinner. Free food? Hell yes!
1. Don’t identify yourself as an ally. Don’t treat it like a special identity not to hate an oppressed group. Because if you do, you are reinforcing hatred of the group as the default position and presenting yourself as a super special exception who should be showered with praise. If you actually want to help an oppressed group, stop treating hatred of that group as the norm.
1a. Please, for the love of all that is holy, do not under any circumstances “come out” as an ally. ESPECIALLY on National Coming Out Day.
2. If a member of an oppressed group is present, shut up. I’m not saying don’t speak in their presence, I’m saying let them fucking talk. Do not breathe a word about what it’s like to be a member of a group you are not a part of when someone in that group is present, unless they explicitly ask you to help them explain a thing. Even then, you better do less talking than they do.
3. If a member of an oppressed group is not present, you better fucking act exactly as you would if they were there. Would you sing along with the N word in a song if a Black person - not your Black best friend, but any random Black person - were there? Don’t do it when they’re not there. Would you let your friends get away with transmisogynist jokes if a trans* woman was present? You better call them out when she’s not there, too.
4. Remember this: No matter how many friends you have who are members of an oppressed group, it doesn’t make you part of that group. Ever. There is no “hood pass”, there are no “honorary gays”, you are not “practically Indian” if you have a bunch of friends from India. Same thing applies even if it’s your partner, your child, an adopted sibling - you may be more familiar with that group than a lot of people, but you are not a *member* of it.
5. If your best friend is a member of a group and wouldn’t care if you do a thing, that doesn’t make it not an oppressive thing to do. You should always err on the side of doing the least potentially offensive/harmful thing, not try to see how much you can get away with.
6. DO NOT OUT ANYONE. EVER. Do not disclose anything about a person unless you have *very clear explicit permission* or they have definitely already disclosed that information to that person, in that context.
7. If you have an opinion about an issue that affects an oppressed group you are not part of, and members of that group have a different opinion, defer to them. Better yet, just skip forming an opinion and find out how members of the group feel. If it doesn’t affect you, it’s not your business to have an opinion about.
8. Rule of thumb: When in doubt, close your mouth. (Exception: see #3. Call out fucked up shit, but again, don’t out anyone in the process.)
- Dudebro: Blah blah blah women are stupid women need to stop playing the "victim" card men are victims too we're victims more than women and NOBODY CAN GET MAD AT ME FOR SAYING THIS BECAUSE FREEDOM OF SPEECH AND I CAN SAY WHAT I WANT.
- Woman: That's pretty fucked up of you.
- Dudebro: HOW DARE YOU DISAGREE WITH ME NOW I AM GOING TO POST YOUR PERSONAL INFORMATION PUBLICLY TO TRY TO SCARE YOU OFF THE INTERNET!!!!