Sometimes White People, You Should Just Be Silent

Image for post
Image for post
Photo by lascot studio from Pexels

White People Have Misplaced Priorities

Sometimes White people, individually and collectively, you should just be silent when we are living through civic unrest because of racist behavior, racial animosity, or violations of our civil rights committed (and supported) by White people.

Be Silent Because You Lack Culturally Competency

Because White people often reject cultural inclusiveness (other culture, you guys are proficient in White) throughout most of your life, you really aren’t equipped to speak on certain things, especially during times like this. If you haven’t sat in Black churches during funerals, visited the homes of grieving non-White people, or observed how non-White people react during their times of crisis like these while living under oppression, just read comments, try to learn how they feel and what they are going through, mourn silently, and wait for the right time or moment to add something of value.

Be Quiet Because You’re Privileged

White people, you guys are so privileged, so used to ruling, and so used to reigning over everything and most of everyone in the world by hook or by crook, you don’t even realize and recognize your privilege when you guys speak to racial minorities. Anytime you speak, you always speak from a position of power, regardless of whether you perceive us Black folk as your equal.

Be Quiet Because You’re Rude

White people think the way they handle things is just fine. If you someone dislikes their method, they get angry and take things personally instead of moving on. Even when they don’t have to comment, they just can’t help themselves. With your collective ethnic group’s history of racism, anti-Blackness and ties to slavery, Black people and POC don’t like to engage with White people at certain times, especially during times of racial strife nationally.

Be Quiet Because There Was More That You Could Have Done

White people, you are so late to this racial injustice fight it ain’t even funny. While I appreciate many of you wanting to be an ally now, it’s too late to ride with us for this moment. It’s like the caged lion at the zoo who turns on its handlers one day because its tired of being imprisoned. All caged things long to be free.

Be Quiet Because You Don’t Know What Is and What’s Not Racist or Inappropriate

I will post this Tweet from Madonna. I want White people to tell me what’s wrong with it in the comment section below. I am telling you up front there is something wrong, so pay attention. I didn’t ask you what you thought she did good White people, I’m asking you what is wrong. I will dissect it after I get your feedback. Read the words and then play her video. Drop your comment below. This is a cultural competency examination.

Be Quiet Because You Worry About The Wrong Things

White people, even well-meaning ones, are worried about maintaining civility and order as nothing changes. The only time anything seems to change for us in America since slavery has been when we escaped seeking freedom or rebelled/revolted against White Supremacy and tyranny.

Be Silent Because Your Words Could Be Seen As Insincere

Sometimes White people, you all are defensive because someone calls you White. Anytime we say White, you guys want to fight. In this moment where being White means being a part of the problem, you do what you well, center Whiteness. Being defensive is so ingrained into your DNA that when you hop into online conversations, join public discussions or make comments in public to people of color you’re attempting to show solidarity with, your comments appear insincere.

Be Quiet Because Your Feelings Get Hurt Easily

If you’re quiet White people, you don’t have to worry about getting your feelings hurt. Black folks know how sensitive you guys are, and we do our best to navigate your feelings by avoiding you unless we need to (or desire to) interact with you. We don’t intend on hurting your feelings, but when you guys violate by not staying on the sidewalk because the streets are for the big dogs, you’re being disrespectful so we give you the business you didn’t want from us.

Be Quiet Because Hurt People Hurt People

This is the most important message I think White people don’t get. White people must be hurt, broken, miserable, deficient, empathy-lacking people to treat us the way they do and/or to tolerate/condone how we are treated.

Be Quiet Because You Don’t Have The Same Energy Fighting With White People

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve written something on social media or even here on Medium meant specifically for Black people, and White people will jump into the comments tone policing, concern trolling my feelings, reinterpreting what I meant, changing the topic or re-centering themselves/White people.

Written by

Buy Our Human Family’s “Field Notes For Allyship, Achieving Equality Together,” the new tool for allies available at| I 🖤

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store