Read Influencers and 27+ Twitter V. The Nation of Black Twitter, (UK, 2020) before you read this : https://seaofknees.com/2020/05/02/influencers-and-27-twitter-v-the-nation-of-black-twitter-uk-2020/
Welcome back!!! I’ve reactivated my Twitter for a few days now so I’m up to date with the foolishness. So let’s get into it.
The Last One
The last post was very very personal but this one will move away from me, myself and I and question what the hell is wrong with you people and what steps we can take as a community to fix these issues?
During my time off, I watched NellaRose’s apology video. I felt touched by it. It was well said and it honestly almost made me cry. I instantly forgave her because that’s what she’s deserving of based on that one what she said and who she has been in the past few years. But I return to Twitter to see that the apology wasn’t sincere to you guys because she wore make up… God of Israel, collect these people I beg.
Some of you are mad and have no one to tell you but it’s I – I have stepped forward to tell you that you lot are truly insane.
What Exactly Do You Want?!
Here’s the sequence of events that makes you mad:
– you start a witch hunt to find anyone and everyone who has made colourist tweets and is slightly recognised in the UK Black community (okay cool). But equally not cool because whoever was putting in every last name in the search box with “black women” and “r*ape” has too much time on their hands.
– you demand honest and sincere apologies (fair)
– you tell people that their are bs (sometimes warranted but mostly wayward)
– you destroy their careers and even go to write about them on the BBC (craziness)
– When you all clocked that you’ve truly f’d up, you now start doing tribute videos to people as if they have died when really you’ve just run them off of Twitter (absolutely insane)
No one can make this make sense to me. The sequence of events is confusing. What exactly do you people want? You want her to die on the cross like the messiah? Beyond apologising and showing changed behaviour, which we’ve seen for years on her channel, what do you want?!
Within the Black Community FOR the Black Community
See Monday for me didn’t show me an opportunity to ruin people’s careers. It showed me a massive chasm within the black community. Many people hate themselves and do not know it.
Yes we needed apologies, that makes sense. But for me it was way more than the apologies. Conversations need to be had within the Black community in spaces created by us (away from non-black eyes and commentary) where we can actually tackle these issues.
I did not leave Twitter on Monday and think to take this matter beyond our community to get clout for myself. That being said, colourism is definitely a world wide issue. On a global scale lighter skin is more accepted by the world than darker skin. So yes I do believe that massive questions about race and identity, especially in the UK where racism is more psychological and institutional than it is physical, need to be raised eventually. BUT dawg. Not like this.
Conversations about issues within the black community need to be dealt with within the black community first. Spaces like the BBC which are known for being a politically and racially bias institution are currently not the right places to discuss these matters. To make matters worse, this wasn’t just a random article – it was linked to events on Twitter which meant bringing attention to a side of twitter that some BBC readers would have never cared to look at before and simply reinforcing their stereotypes and prejudices.
Even worse two black female influencers were named in the article. How does this serve to uplift and help those black women? If those tweets are stemmed in self hate and you’re so concerned that those women hate themselves, why not start a dialogue with them? Why not educate them? Why feed them to the British media for the consumption of a country whose national identity relies on prejudice? Have you not questioned why the black men and women who were making jokes about r*pe aren’t being attacked as much? And yet you deliver two darker skinned women right into the hands of people who already hate them, to hate them even more. Okay, makes sense Black Twitter xoxo
The Problem with Cancel Culture
The problem with cancel culture, is that it suggests that humans are static beings. Almost as if we’re born perfect and are incapable of making mistakes and must maintain that purity until death. Best said in this thread:
So you don’t believe in forgiveness? We can never be saved? We can’t grow and change? Who even are you to decide that fate for someone? And it would be okay if those tweets were personally aimed at you. Not defending those crazy tweets at all but they said “black women”. But imagine them all saying your actual direct name, people having access to some of your private information and insecurities and using that to bully and taunt you. You lot exposed the bullies just to become them.
Another thread which puts this point really well:
That being said I do believe there are people who do not deserve to be forgiven – not because their crimes have branded them for eternal hate but because I don’t believe they’ve actually changed or grown from those mistakes. But when they do, the forgiveness must be granted because that is how we progress as a community.
*some things are unforgivable but again it’s up to each individual affected to make those choices such as violent crimes/r*pe*
What Did YOU Gain?
For me it seemed like an opportunity to start an important conversation. But I came back to Twitter to see that it was just entertainment and this stuff didn’t even affect loads of people. People literally just wanted to make someone feel like crap. Well done, you’ve done it.
Those tweets showed me that as an educator, I need to observe the black 11-16 year olds I teach, listen in to their conversations about how they view themselves and instil some sense of self love amongst them. It showed me that as an older sister, I need to have conversations with my younger siblings (16, 14, 6) about what it means to be a black man/woman and how the world views them but also how they should see themselves. And even further than that, it showed me that as a potential future parent, I’m going to have to drum it into my kids that they’re amazing from day one.
As an individual affected by these issues I was more upset I was angry but even then, I was thinking more about progression than destruction.
Just take a moment to think about what you personally gained from all this.
Think And Talk About It
One of the people who did make those tweets who I didn’t know or speak to before all this actually saw how affected I was and chose to reach out. We had a very long, respectful conversation about it all and I honestly don’t feel as angry anymore. In fact, he’s forgiven by me anyways.
If something truly has hurt you, you’ll deal with it directly and try to find the best possible solution not some kind of method of mass destruction.
We still have to live as a community. We still will be raising our kids together 5, 10, 15 years from now . Lol which is better: have these conversations now so we can raise the next generation to love themselves and each other or attack people en masse, destroy their careers then have them shield their children from ever being a part of “the culture” but also hating themselves because we haven’t actually taken the time to re-educate the current generation?
See all this anger is so short sighted. It’s as if you’re forgetting how much your parents shape your world view during the early stages of your life. Trust me I have the right to be angry as a multiple r*pe survivor, as a black woman, etc and I was bloody angry.
But I stopped feeding into the TL drama, deactivated, came back and had actual conversations with people which have made me feel better but have also opened up room for more discussion.
Some People Have the Right Idea
Let’s end on a positive note plis. I’m going to end this post with a list of people who are are encouraging these important conversations and creating spaces for them to take place as well as some books, and other resources you can find on these issues within the black community.
Someone who is actually making an effort to have regular talks about black identity and colourism is @Eziprose (Twitter/Insta). Tune into her insta lives every Thursday from 8 – 10pm where she very clearly breaks down what kinds of issues we need to tackle.
@Tabletalkldn (Insta), Table Talk on YouTube https://m.youtube.com/watch?feature=youtu.be&v=Sh8ikkVRlPo, host excellent conversations ranging from Black parenthood to black academics, sexuality, colourism and many more. Hosted by @RejiYates
@Just_Georgette (Twitter) hosts a podcast @Justthetippod (Twitter/Spotify) that breaks down important conversations about sex and sexuality which as many know is a massive taboo within our communities so do check it out. These conversations rarely happen in our communities so it’s great that she’s created a space for them.
I recently listened to a book recommended to me by @JJ_Bola (Twitter) which was a compilation of essays written by Black British men about their experiences. It was so diverse and I honestly recommend listening to it rather than reading it because it was such a beautiful reading experience.
The Grapevine on YouTube are also amazing. They have discussions with different people about a range of topics such as interracial dating, African spiritually, love, movie reviews, etc. Coolest thing about this is that they travel across the States and sometimes to the UK.
@aqua_or_bob (Twitter) has created a thread compiling her thoughts in relation to colourism. It’s such a great and touching read.
If there’s any I’ve missed out, do let me know. I’ll make a new post (tomorrow or next week) with just loads of links and I’ll just keep adding to it.
Conclusion – BURN THE BURN BOOK
Educate yourselves, have conversations with people who you believe are ignorant about themselves and the rest of the black community. By all means if they choose to be idiots after that you let them continue in blindness.
And please for the sake of our sanity – bring back the positive vibes to the TL.
Don’t be an idiot and stay blessed xoxo