Updated: Dec 3, 2020
There's a lot of good information and resources circling around right now, and it's vital we pay attention. We've put together a few that helped us – things we found beneficial to our understanding of black lives and our knowledge of the movement.
Words have, and always will be, the drivers of change. The thoughts they portray and the ideas they relay. Here are some words that give us perspective.
"Inside the Culture of Racism at Bon Appétit" – Insight into the culture of racism that is embedded in the structure of these huge "progressive" institutions – like that of Bon Appetit's parent company, Condé Nast.
Quick-read – “How Do We Change America?” from The New Yorker asks the hardest, most important questions about what actual institutional change looks like, and the radical steps and new politics of accomplishing it. It's a brilliant piece that goes beyond party lines to call out politicians' discrepancies and uses fact-based evidence to prove that reforms have failed, over and over again.
In-depth – “Ain’t I a Woman?” by bell hooks. Black female experiences are inherently different from what mainstream feminism advocates. Learn about it. Think about it. Be aware of it next time you talk about your feminism. Here’s black-owned bookstores you can buy it from. The book's title comes from Sojourner Truth’s speech about being a black woman, given at a women’s rights convention in 1851. It's a wise-beyond-her-years call-out of white, male privilege. Read that first. You can also read about the radical liberation of bell hooks’ feminist philosophy here.
The most important thing we can do right now is to listen to what black people are saying. It's not a time for white people to take charge. We must follow their lead – handing them a microphone and using our bodies in whichever way we can to amplify their voices. These podcasts show us black voices within the contexts of American culture.
Black lives – The Nod doesn’t air anymore, but they have 2.5 years of episodes regarding the stories of Black life that don’t get told.
By and about black people. There is no use watching shows by white people about white lives right now. White life is American life. We need to understand that it cannot be the standard anymore.
Atlanta – comedy-drama starring Donald Glover – about life in Atlanta as a wanna-be hip-hop artist.
Blackish – sitcom Starring Dre Johnson and Tracee Ellis Ross – about a black family trying to keep their identity in a white, uppity neighborhood.
Dear White People – A satirical show about black students at an Ivy League college that comments on post-racial fallacy and explores complex social issues.
Black South Rising – and hour-long Youtube documentary by Vice about Charlotte, NC, and how the city is trying to rectify having the worst economic mobility rates in the country. It's a quest by the city government to make things more equitable for the black and brown community.
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It's our duty to support the companies that support black lives. We can't be anti-racist if we continue to give money to companies that actively and passively perpetuate racism. Here are ways to ethically consume and support black businesses.
Progressive Shopper Chrome Plugin – This simple plugin tells you if the website you're on (if they have data on it) donated to any political campaigns, and which side they’re on.
Eat Okra – This app lets you search for local black-owned biz in your area.
Pull Up for Change – Rework the status-quo – This Instagram account gathers statistics on the diversity of workplaces and demands the companies publicly address their diversity problems. It lets the public know what these "progressive" brands are actually doing (or aren't doing) to achieve equity. Then you can make your own decisions on who to support.
We all need to try our best to further our understanding and support in whatever ways we can. It's not enough to passively post or willfully ignore the discourse around us. Take it in. Think about it. Talk about it. Amplify it. And if you can, donate to the Movement for Black Lives.
xoxo, the 2.0 team