Black Lives Matter

Native_Pride

Dear White People,

I know it’s very hard to understand what it is like to be a minority in the USA. I understand that you have been taught to think certain things and believe certain things, and that those beliefs can be hard to let go of. My own mother was white (so I am mixed race but with dark skin.) I saw her do racist things without even realizing it since I was small. I really do sympathize.

And yet, All Lives Matter is bullshit.

Yes, you were not raised to hear the voices of Native Americans or Black Americans or Asian Americans. You are not used to our point of view. It is new.

Before, our voices were silenced. And now that technology has given us a platform to express ourselves, you see more shows with minority characters and even shows about minorities. You hear more of our struggles and how cops treat us badly. You hear more of how your inherited wealth gives you an advantage over us. You hear more about your privilege.

But that doesn’t mean you have to react with hate.

A woman the other day on my Facebook page was furious that I said that #BlackLivesMatter. She was furious that I compared the economic and social disadvantages of black people to those of Native Americans. She was furious that our cultures would want the genocide of my people and the slavery of the Black people taught in schools. She was trying to shut me up. She was trying to shout me down. And it went on for hours.

I was patient.

I explained that I only wanted Native voices to be heard. I wanted people to know that cops accuse us of being illegal immigrants because of our brown skin, accuse us of drinking just because “that’s what Indians do,” and treat us badly.

But she wouldn’t have it. Oh no! She was going to tell me about how I was lying. She was going to insist that I had equal rights, and more than that, she was going to educate me about how white people never killed Native Americans. Oh no. According to her, my people were killed by disease and white people had nothing to do with it.

What I noticed most was that she had a narrative in her head. My voice clashed with it. So, she tried to shut me up. She tried to insult me and my tribe, insult all minorities, and deny that racism exists.

And then, when I disagreed, she told me that the reason we couldn’t have a peaceful dialog is because I refused to listen to her (in other words, I refused to agree with her racism.)

Look, I know that some of you are allies. Those of you who do see inequality and who do speak up, I love you. But I run into a lot of racists. I mean, a lot. And it’s not okay. Shouting us down won’t work anymore. You can’t stop the signal. We won’t be bullied. We won’t be silenced by your hate and your false narrative.

The fact is, white lies are the worst lies. It sucks that society calls lies that don’t hurt people “white lies.” In truth, white lies about how Native Americans were never slaughtered and slavery never happened are the worst lies that society tells.

Try to stop us if you want. But #BlackLivesMatter and I have #NativePride. You won’t stop us from speaking up any more.

Yours sincerely,

Victor

P.S. Don’t try to pretend it’s just a few bad apples. Just don’t.

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