“I’m white. What can I do to fight racism?”. It’s a question you might’ve been asking yourself. I sure have. In this post I’ll give you some guidance on how to fight racism as a white person.
You might know that I’ve been quite active on various social media platforms to try and educate people on how to use your white privilege to fight racism. I’m not saying these steps are perfect, and you might have your own approach (please let me know in the comments – I’m always open for new ideas and insights!).
Just so you know, I have white privilege myself. I came up with these steps by doing my own research, because I wanted to know what I can do. They are by no means perfect.
Step 1: Be aware of your white privilege and use it
Having white privilege doesn’t mean your life hasn’t been hard, but at least the color of your skin hasn’t made your life harder. You need to be aware of this in order to help fight racism. Use your white privilege. Challenge racism when you see it, point it out to people. Speak up when you see, hear or read something racist. If you see injustice, make it right (or at least try to). As Desmond Tutu, South African Anglican cleric and theologian known for his work as anti-apartheid and human rights activist said:
If you are neutral in situations of injustice, you have chosen the side of the oppressor.
— Desmond Tutu
Step 2: Don’t be silent. Use your voice*!
If you’re active on social media, that’s a great place to start! Start sharing posts that fight against racism and don’t be scared to put something on your grid. But don’t be afraid and do take a step further than the screen of your phone. Start challenging that uncle who makes racist jokes at the dinner table. Don’t avoid conversations about race or racism just because it makes you feel uncomfortable. Keep talking about it.
There are also templates available that you can use to send your local MP a letter.
*Use your voice but don’t overshadow black voices. Don’t take up space. Let black voices be heard. And don’t hijack the conversation.
Step 3: Donate. Put your money where your mouth is!
I know this is a sensitive one as not everyone has the means to donate. Please only follow this step if you can; don’t feel bad if you can’t contribute by means of money. There are many other ways to fight racism.
I recently donated to the Minnesota Freedom Fund, but there are lots of other funds that help fight racism. There are local initiatives as well as international ones. Here are a couple of (registered) charities to get you started:
Step 4. Stay informed. Knowledge is power.
There are various ways to do so but my advice here is: read, read, and read. Read books by BIPOC authors (Goodreads is a great resource!). Follow accounts that fight for justice (Click here for 25 Black Vegan Instagrammers you need to follow). Keep yourself informed about what’s happening in the world.
If you don’t understand it, Google it. Why is saying “I don’t see color” not helping? Google it. What is white privilege? Google it. Or use Bing, or Yahoo. You get the point. Don’t put the burden on black people; we have more than 400 years to catch up, 400 years of oppression. Don’t hold onto that oppression by expecting your BIPOC friends to chew it out for you. Do your own research.
This is my advice. If you have any feedback, or other ideas on how to fight racism, please let me know. Get in touch with me on Instagram or send me an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Or just leave a comment below.
Let’s fight racism. It’s about f*cking time.