My Commitment to Allyship: A Non-Black Mother’s Reflection on Juneteenth

Note: this blog post has been adapted from a Facebook/Instagram post that I shared earlier this month.

I’m going to preface this by saying: I’ve gone back and forth quite a bit on what I should share in light of the recent events highlighting police brutality and systemic oppression against the Black community in the U.S.

Why did I struggle? Mainly because I felt compelled — as a diversity and inclusion professional, as a self-proclaimed feminist, inclusionist, and mother who’s determined to raise anti-racist, anti-sexist, anti-homophobic, generally anti-bigoted sons — to make my thoughts and feelings known.

Also, sadly, because I felt pressured by the sheer amount of anti-racism-related and allyship-related content that was flooding my news feeds: I was concerned that my social media silence would be interpreted as apathy — or worse — complicity. What could I post on Instagram, Facebook, and my blog to assert that this was a cause I cared about? And how could I word my thoughts so that people would know I’m not a performative ally?

And then I told myself. Fuck. That.

I realized: I don’t need to prove who I am to whoever follows me on social media. People who know me, know where I stand. And I shouldn’t rely on social media engagement metrics as measurement of whether or not I’m doing the right thing as an ally.

Besides, this moment and this movement aren’t about me — while this is a challenging time, I can’t forget that what’s important is amplifying the voices and struggles of the Black community. I shouldn’t and won’t forget about that.

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