Progressives are getting in the way of progress with the following three very misguided habits. Bad habit number one: If you’re in the perceived oppressor group, you know… (white people) You are totally barred from giving opinions on racial discrimination, religious intolerance, or any other forms of oppression, because what do you know? Oppressor! Minorities on the other hand can say whatever they want! But only about their own tribes. And that is bad habit number two. Black people can weigh in on police brutality. Women can debate abortion rights. But don’t you dare offer feedback, new ideas, or shared experiences to other tribes, because that is out of bounds. In other words: unless you know exactly what I’m going through… Shut the fuck up. Unless of course, we’re talking about white people! (White people.) Because shitty happened number three: Everyone can talk about white people. Especially us people of color. We like to think of it as an immunity card following the last 500 years of cultural and ethnic cleansing. We POCs can point fingers at, ridicule, and villainize white people- no matter their intentions, or their experiences with oppression, or their individual history of being an ally, or their potential to be an ally in the future. You all with me so far? Great! Here’s the problem. These habits… are the wrinkle creams of progress. It feels good at first, but that shit don’t work. Like habit number one about silencing white people: We need white allies. We need them active in the conversation, so that they’re active in the solution. And let us not forget: White people are still the gatekeepers. That’s why MLK spent so much time working with white members of Congress, because Dr. King understood that without engaging white allies, the Civil Rights Act would have never been passed. It’s the same reason why Snoop Dogg and The Game sat down with LAPD right after the deaths of Alton Sterling and Philando Castile. SNOOP: “Our whole mission today was to move in peace. And not to bash the police, but to come up here and get some dialogue with some communication.” if we want to change police culture… We need the police. Excluding white people from having a seat at the table… that doesn’t create equality. That just creates a reversal of the power dynamics. Actually, Can I take a moment right now and speak directly to my wokest of woke white friends? Okay. What’s up, y’all? Um, I love you. Thank you for your growing racial sensitivity and for fighting against oppression. Thank you for making your parents watch 13th last Christmas. That was really dope. And thank you for no longer wearing those feather headdresses at Burning Man. We all really appreciate it. But also… Every time you mute yourself in a conversation about oppression… While I get that you’re just trying to correct for most of history… in my humble opinion: To mute yourself for being white is to revoke your responsibility as a human being to participate in the conversations where we need. you MOST. Don’t disempower yourself. Support us in empowering ourselves. Get the difference? And now let’s move on to bad habit Number two: Unless you know exactly what my tribe is going through- keep your opinions to yourself. That is exactly what the oppressor wants. Minorities that are separated and siloed, because united we stand. But divided we fall and get conquered. We all benefit from cross pollinating and most importantly from aligning on the issues that affect all of us. Like when Jews and blacks came together during the civil rights movement… Y’all remember that? I don’t. I wasn’t born yet. But I read about it Two persecuted minorities working together to end Jim Crow segregation. That is how you move mountains. How about in the 80s when gay and trans people stopped fighting each other and instead joined forces to fight the AIDS epidemic? Again, I don’t remember it. I was a toddler, but I watch POSE on FX, so I know about it. We’ve got to stop tearing each other down. Like when we call the Gina Rodriguez’s of the world ‘anti-black’ for loving a culture and music so much that with no malicious intent she sings a loaded song lyric- something by the way that JLo did 20 years ago, something that Fat Joe does to this day- That’s not anti black. That’s identifying with black culture, a thing a lot of us Latinx people do, no matter how much melanin we inherited in our skin. You want to see the anti black? Let’s save our wrath for them. When we take down the Gina Rodriguez’s and we push away those fan bases, that doesn’t make our army stronger. That makes us vulnerable. That’s like Daenerys Targaryen forgetting about Cersei Lannister because she’s got a bone to pick with Arya. Cersei and the dead people are coming for you. And also Arya has mad knife skills. You need her in your tribe. Were things perfectly harmonious between Blacks and Jews during the Civil Rights Movement? No. Same thing with gays, lesbians and trans people when they were fighting the AIDS epidemic. But imperfectly united is way better than perfectly divided. So if we can all agree that we need white allies active in our conversation, and if we can also agree that minorities should be joining forces instead of over policing each other, Then can we also agree that bad habit number three sucks? The one that grants us permission to make fun of white people for like ever? The world doesn’t change overnight. Villainizing white people for not being woke enough fast enough… doesn’t make them any more woke. It just pushes them towards Trump. Let’s be better to them than they have historically been to us. And white progressives are our allies. They’re trying to understand their privilege and how it’s enabled our issues. They’re trying to vote the right way. They are having uncomfortable conversations with their MAGA hat wearing family members. Hoping to sway conservative minds toward progress and equality. So when we slander all white people and make them the butt of our jokes – as if they had no feelings – We’re also slandering some of the very people who’ve been our allies since day one, since before it was cool to call yourself an ally. We can’t fight racial profiling… as we are racially profiling. Let’s fight this culture war with respect and love as our weapons, because at the end of the day: if we’re gonna shoot people down on the virtue of their skin color… Then we’re no better than they are now. Whether you agree or not, I want to hear from you. How do you think that we can heal from our divisiveness? Comment below. I will read everything you guys write and also subscribe to my channel. I don’t know where the button is right now, but wherever it is, you should definitely hit it. I’m Miriam Isa, putting us back on course for discourse. Follow me on my socials. @Miriamisa on Twitter. @Miriam_isa on Instagram. @MiriamAisa on tik-tok. Oh my god. It’s so annoying. Can people just stop being named after me? Can I have all of my handles back, please? Or should I just change my name to a name that has never been said like… Eureka Banana Ninja? Are those handles available? Is anyone still watching this video?