It’s 2016. Why does the thought of diversity and the fact that people of color (like me) are fighting to achieve equality and representation, anger so many white people? If you live with a “color blind” perspective, then you will fail to see systemic discrimination and inequality as it stares at you in your own community. Unfortunately, people of color cannot yet afford to exist without consciousness of their color. I have harboured internalized contempt towards my own Filipino, queer identity because of the normalized perceptions of Asian people paraded by mainstream white society. When Kristen Stewart told entertainers of color to “Do something!” she failed to realize that we always are, but aren’t given the same amount of opportunities. Which is why we have resorted to our own means and I hope our success continues to grow. But generally speaking, we still need help. We need white people to realize that not everything plays out equally for everyone else, even from the start.
When discussing privilege, it seems that many white people only view it in a financial sense. But for people of color, it encompasses all boundaries in a socio-political cultural sphere. Even a friend of mine who is half white, half POC failed to acknowledge this. But that’s our reality. We all have internalized a false perception of where we belong in society. I’ve internalized that in a hierarchy of POC, blacks are at the bottom, Asians are at the top, and as long as I have my (still unfair) share, I’m cool with it. *Wrong.* This is still wrong. This is the systemic mental process that needs to go. I try to pull back from these seedlings of thought daily and I’m getting better.
To whomever is reading, please think deeper. Challenge your perceptions. Help us all get better and reach more equal footing in society.
*Final note, read The Fire Next Time by James Baldwin.*
Now let’s get in formation.
i never again want to hear or see acts of hate. I never again want to hear: “death to jews.” “death to arabs” “palestinians don’t exist.” “once born a man, always a man.” “adam and EVE, not adam and steve.” collective blaming on the black community. “marriage isn’t your right because of your sexual preference. “the purpose of marriage is to procreate.” “i’m not attracted to asians/ they’re just not attractive, ew ur an ugly asian.” gay men are not REAL men.” “i’m not a feminist” “men need to be the heads of their households.” “islam is a cancer.” “why aren’t muslims denouncing terror?” “not all muslims are terrorists, but all terrorists are muslims.” “slavery happened hundreds of years ago, the president is now black, get over it.” “she was asking for it/ she drank too much/ what was she wearing?” slut shaming. bringing down girls. “boys will be boys” as a way to disregard responsibility. classism. racism. the anti-semitism behind the “need” for zionism. apathy for the environment/ mindless littering/ the cigarette out the window.
i want a peaceful society of equality and communal support. i want to live to see the eradication of inequality. to see same sex couples embrace each other freely wherever they please. to see men caring for women when they’re drunk and vice versa. to see more men of color and several women as POTUS. to see beautiful ASIAN movie stars win Academy Awards (for non stereotypical roles). to see noteworthy, honest representation of all ethnic groups on television. for families torn apart by immigration reunited. for prisons to educate and rehabilitate. for jews to be able to live anywhere in the world with love and not face hatred. for that fucking wall in Palestine to come crashing down. for Israel/Palestine to be binational, removing Jewish privilege and forging true equality. for famous people to be OUT without fear, for LGBT to be recognized as valuable humans. and lastly, i want to see my parents and close friends at my future wedding to a man.