Some deeply personal thoughts on ally-ship, intersectionality, & where to go from here. #notnormal 1/— LJ Cohen (@lisajanicecohen) November 17, 2016
This is the entire thread that I posted on twitter this morning, consolidated into one post. I would love to believe I'm overreacting. I would love to believe that our democratic institutions will weather any storm. I would love to be wrong.
Some deeply personal thoughts on ally-ship, intersectionality, and where to go from here. #notnormal
I am white, Jewish, neuro-atypical (among others). Some of my identities wrap me in privilege, some expose me to intolerance. Regardless of my other identities, my whiteness has protected me and let me live a life of relative privilege.
I was guilty of believing we were evolving as a society. That the work of social justice had already been done and I didn't have to fight. I was guilty of believing I could sit back in my comfortable suburban life and be smug in my liberal politics.
Hey - we had gay marriage. We elected the 1st black president, twice. It was all unicorns and glitter, right?
I thought anti-Muslim rhetoric after 9-11 was a blip & things would normalize. But being anti-Muslim became the new normal. #notnormal
I thought we'd made headway in dismantling institutional racism. Then came case after case of police targeting black lives, brown lives. These were not new horrors, only newly documented, newly public. Impossible to ignore, even in white suburbia. #notnormal
Economic & educational segregation is alive and well and thriving. Partly due to people like me who stopped saying this is #notnormal
Our justice system is blind, right? But it was never supposed to be blind to injustice. I bought into the whole zero-tolerance rhetoric, never seeing how it was propped up by manufactured fear or how it destroyed black lives simply because they were black. #notnormal
Now we have the ascendancy of Trump and the attempted normalization of intolerance. If I remain silent - if I believe the institutions of government will protect the vulnerable from these abuses - I create the conditions for abuse to be normalized. My liberal politics don't matter. My support of social justice causes doesn't matter.
NONE of it matters if I remain silent and allow what privilege I have to shield me. That is cowardice. That supports evil. #notnormal
Yes, I am late to this party. Yes, I let myself be complacent. I can let shame hold me back or I can move forward with greater resolve and add my voice to the chorus saying #notnormal
Do not be silent. Silence=consent