This was such an interesting question. It was lengthy so I had to cut it down but here is the question in it’s entirety so that you don’t miss a beat:
“I am Hispanic and I often back the Black Lives Matter movement in any way I can, by going to protests and rallies or even just on social media. However, I am often encountered with African American feminists who say they are “too busy” defending their own race to also defend other NBPOC (non-black people of color). It really gets to me that as a NBPOC I am constantly defending the Black Lives Matter movement and their experiences, but when it comes down to it, a black person minimizes my experiences and says they’re “not as bad,” when it’s proven Latinas make even LESS than black females/dollar. From now on, should I just stay out of supporting the BLM movement and just focus on only helping my own race?“
Well first of all, I’d like to thank you very much for supporting the black movement. It surely means a lot to many of us and I’m so sorry about the the lack of empathy you received when you needed the support.
My easy answer would be to focus on supporting your race and then if you have some time left, please don’t stop supporting not only the Black community but also the other races that need help.
Please don’t let a few bad apples spoil it for the rest of the apples who would definitely support the Latino community.
Please feel free to let us know how we can help support your community!
I think it is important, more so, imperative for all oppressed groups to be in support of one another. I think all People of Color should be in large support of one another.
I think it is important, more so, imperative for all oppressed groups to be in support of one another.
(I happen not to look at #blacklivesmatter as only pertaining to those who identify as black, but those who can relate what it is like to be a person of color in the United States.)
With that said, there is no yes or no to your question. It is not fair of anyone to minimize your experience. We are all fighting for equal acceptance, opportunity, and respect that has only been given to a small number of people in the past.
Is Spike Lee wrong for only speaking out on diversity in terms of what he as a Black man has experienced in Hollywood without commenting on the lack of representation for other minority groups?
Once again, it’s not a matter of yes or no. I think the key is listening. The more listening we do to one another as oppressed groups the more it will actually allow us to unite and learn how to better support one another in our greater fight.
Of course I would encourage you to continue helping the #blacklivesmatter movement, but I also understand if your focus wants to shift to helping your community specifically.
I try to remain as woke as possible, but I do not claim to fight for every person experiencing oppression on earth right now. All I can do is continue the fight and growth contributing to the greater energy that strives for equality for all, every day, in the way I can.
I hear your frustration. I think that there is a large disparity when it comes to minorities coming together to support each other in the fight for equality. However, I also feel like I can only speak on my own experiences. I can’t speak on what it is like to be a Latina in America because frankly I don’t know.
But I think black people can be allies to other minorities in this country. Yes, we should support your movement. Yes, we should be using our platforms, in part, to speak on the racism against other groups outside of our own. I completely agree. But, I think the road block comes in when we feel like one movement has to stop in order to support another. For example, the police killings of young, unarmed black men; if there is a police murder of a young, unarmed Latino man, I think Black Lives Matters should march and protest for them as well. But, if BLM splits their focus to fight for all atrocities against every minority race (which is non-white) in this country, we would lose focus and force.
No one should attempt to take away the validity of your experience in this country because it is an important narrative.
On a personal, everyday level, I think it is absurd that someone would say that they don’t have time to care about the Latino community in this country so they won’t fight for them. It is biased and unfair. No one should attempt to take away the validity of your experience in this country because it is an important narrative. But I think, for myself, I can support and march and use whatever platform I have to speak on issues directly effecting NBPOC but not to the point to where speaking on issues that directly effect me get lost in the shuffle.
Join the community and have your voice heard here. Or ask an anonymous question here.