How White LGBTQIA+ Power Comes Before Black Livelihoods
When intersectionality goes wrong. Strange how that keeps happening.
Many of you have probably already heard about the Netflix/Dave Chappelle/LGBTQIA rift. If not, you can read about some of it here, here, here, here, here, here, and here. I’m not getting into all the he said-she said and whose feelings matter most. I want to talk about the White power/dominant society aspect which has been overlooked.
I want to talk about imaginary intersectionality and how White minority/majority subgroups flex their power when it serves them at the expense of Black people. With Dave Chappelle regardless of which side of the coin you agree with, you should pay close attention to the way the White LGBTQIA community used its power and privilege big time in an effort to cancel Chappelle and Netflix. Also, don’t lose sight of the fact the Black LGBTQIA+ community often gains nothing from their affiliation with the dominant society portions of the so-called minority of their collective subgroup.
The White LGBTQIA+ community members and supporters were the loudest in their opposition to Chappelle and Netflix. The Black trans-community member paid the heaviest price as a result of their attempt to sabotage the company. When will Black folks, regardless of identity or sexual orientation, learn they can’t do what White folks do and get away with it. We are always going to be their sacrificial lambs and life insurance policies.
White Supremacy Wasn’t Fired, But The Black Person Was
Jaclyn Moore, the White trans woman writer, and showrunner of a show about Black people dealing with White Supremacy (that’s a whole other subject to delve into, but I digress), was one of the first people to speak out publicly against Dave Chappelle and Netflix concerning what she felt was LGBTQIA slander. I won’t be going into her views because that’s not the main point I’m trying to make at this time. While Moore stated she didn’t want Chappelle canceled, Moore did declare she wouldn’t be working with Netflix again to produce more shows.
After a long hiatus, the final season of her popular show Dear White People has just been released. After this season I suppose Moore and Netflix will part ways per her wishes, but the collateral damage facing Black folks involved with her show and Netflix going forward has yet to be examined. You know there will be repercussions. There are always repercussions with White Supremacy.
All the Black people in her Black show will from now on be saddled with Moore’s name and show on their resumes for better or worse. Moore didn’t care about the future prospects of any of the Black actors and writers on her show and do you know why she didn’t?
Because she doesn’t have to? She’s a White trans woman with the same manly energy all White women use when they want and need to get their way which usually comes at the expense of Black folks.
Another casualty of White LGBTQIA+ outrage was the Black transwoman employed with Netflix who just happened to be the leader of the trans resource group. She too was upset about the special and riding hard for her White family members no doubt puffed up to cry foul by the likes of White LGBTQIA community members like Moore. This individual was terminated for releasing sensitive business data regarding the Chappelle Netflix special which was proprietary.
This Black transwoman was also the same person who was organizing a walkout at the company to show solidarity with the White LGBTQIA+ members. When you try to be anything other than Black, the dominant society will always give you a wake-up call.
“All these white people are going around talking to the press and speaking publicly on Twitter, and the only person who gets fired is the Black person who was quiet the entire time.”
~ Former Netflix Employee
What I find interesting is the only person terminated or punished by the dominant society thus far for opposing the company was a Black transwoman. Sadly, her alliances were with White Supremacy. The dominant society showed her quickly and unceremoniously she’s Black. Not only did she lose her job, but the White LGBTQIA+ community is also really quiet.
There are no rallies planned.
There are no public Twitter comments on the allyship calling for the Black trans woman to get her job back (not that she would anyway after such an egregious violation, but show solidarity dammit!).
There is nothing but silence.
The Black trans employee is not getting any hero labels for her antics either. That’s because those sorts of antics don’t work unless you’re white.
While I understand releasing sensitive company information warranted termination, shouldn’t have some of the other antics pulled by White LGBTQIA+ members crossing Netflix’s path also be subject to termination or loss of income as well?
Jaclyn Moore isn’t losing any money and she was one of the first and most prominent trans members of the LGBTQIA+ community to speak out against Netflix. She’s actually doing business with the company. She’s White. Moore wrote for and ran a show which centered a cast of mostly Black folks. Her show is getting ready to go on the air. She’s getting her coins boo.
And although she’s a White transwoman, she flexed her White male energy to achieve her goal and it was recognized by the dominant society. She also got the same type of punishment White members of the dominant society to receive when they disagree publicly and stay on code. Moore was rewarded.
See, more spoke out against a Black man and attempted to ruin him. She’s on code. That’s the primary objective of White Supremacy. Wrapped in all the labels and terms, pronouns, and political correctness was code and Jaclyn was on it.
White Supremacy stays on code and that’s something Black folks seemingly cannot wrap their heads around.
That power is something Black members of the LGBTQIA+ community will never have. The dominant society proves it to us time and time again, but instead of focusing on the power, we focus on feelings, and White folks don’t give a shit about our feelings or our finances for that matter. Just look who is winning in the big scheme of things here.
Different Strokes For Different Folks
The White trans employee who attempted to storm a Netflix executive meeting in protest of the show in an effort to censor Chappelle was suspended, not fired. Originally the White trans employees who participated in the Netflix revolt were fired, but suddenly there was a change of heart and their terminations were reversed, changed to suspensions instead. Can’t have White legacies tarnished and those White bank accounts empty now, can we?
When it comes to power and the code of Whiteness, White folks understand what drives other White folks and that’s money. The White trans employee(s) attempting to crash the meeting also slandered Netflix in these Twitter streets, doing great harm to the company’s reputation but allowing them to keep their job. The Black trans employee also hurt the company’s business and was terminated.
I know a lot of Black people who are a part of the LGBTQIA+ community who place that community above their race as if it some gives them more privilege or more covering. We live in a racialized social hierarchy where our race/skin color determines our value first. Gender is secondary.
Situations like the one involving Netflix, Moore, the other White trans employees involved, and the White LGBTQIA+ community demonstrate how White Supremacy works. The White members lead, and their POC coalitions follow blindly. The White LGBTQIA+ community wins by any means necessary and the Black, Brown POC parts of the community are collateral damage, their lives in shambles.
The White Supremacy and the dominant society plays both sides and it plays to win. Sometimes it plays multiple sides, but the objective is still the same.
The White LGBTQIA+ folks with power started the bullshit (i.e. Jaclyn Moore), egging on millions of other non-White marginalized minorities who don’t have the kind of power, proximity to Whiteness, money, or other currency to burn. They win while non-Whites in the community lose.
The roweling up and subsequent firing of the Black trans employee was the perfect example of the Ls minority members of the community take and yet they still rock with them. At the end of the day, the White LGBTQIA+ community is no different than the White feminist movement. They all are seeking more power from White men, and these groups aren’t fighting for Black people to have any of it.
Black LGBTQIA+ community members better learn the world governs based on skin color. White is at the top, Black is at the bottom. The dominant society only cares about our gender after our race. The White LGBTQIA+ community engages in lots of performative allyship just like most White people, but when it’s time for the rubber to meet the road, like most folks, they’re lacking and absent big time.
The Black LGBTQIA+ community members are going to go through some things because they choose White Supremacy, a system that sees us as illegitimate from the start. When you choose your gender identity, sexual orientation, or sexual identity over your race, you’re eventually going to be collateral damage. Homophobia is everywhere and in every group, but when it comes to anti-Blackness, the world is unified on that front. Black trans and queer folks are taking their lives into their hands when you make that unholy alliance with White Supremacy.
As things get worse, White people will get on one accord. If you’ve been helping the wrong team, it’s going to be really hard for you to find cover when the bad bad starts. Trust me when I tell you that’s not what you want.
Before I end, let share how Netflix represents White Supremacy as well.
How Netflix (White Supremacy) Plays Both Sides And Wins
Netflix’s role in the saga is yet another perfect example of how the dominant society plays both sides and wins, and how when Black folks join the wrong team or are in too close a proximity to the dominant society, they are often unceremoniously put out to pasture. Netflix has been a huge supporter of the LGBTQIA+ community, which is why so many from the LGBTQIA+ community employed with the company are potentially available to walk out of the company in a boycott of the Chappelle comedy special.
Such demonstration of affirmation by Netflix of the LGBTQIA+ community is why there had been many complaints by many conservative users in the past about the noticeable number of new shows with LGBTQIA characters, writers, or other footprints that made it clear the company was moving in a newer, more trans-friendly direction.
White Supremacy was catering to both sides of the social hierarchy.
But let me make a few things clear. Netflix’s affirmation was all about money, power (controlling a new, loud, powerful minority segment/subgroup), and establishing a more mainstream view of the White LGBTQIA+.
While Blacks may benefit a little from the proximity, all the money and power will still be concentrated among White people, including White trans folks like rabble-rouser Jaclyn Moore.
Additionally, Netflix used Dave Chappelle to pushback against a loud, vocal segment they’ve likely been wanting to attack for some time. Chappelle provided the company with the perfect cover. It’s a Black folk saving White folks from White folks once again kind of thing. That’s the big picture most folks miss. That’s White Supremacy in action.
Black folks are and always will be the collateral damage of White Supremacy. Allow me to demonstrate to you how.
Netflix paid Dave Chappelle millions to do a series of comedy shows. They knew what his shows were about and they knew those shows would likely offend folks inside and outside of their company, but we live in America, and citizens are entitled to their freedom of speech even if it kills others (just ask African Americans). The only people who have ever had a beef with his content were the LGBTQIA+ community.
The LGBTQIA+ community was the group of folks offended.
Not Black people he called N-words, the women Chappelle frequently refers to as bitches, the Catholic Church for being called out for pedophilia, nor any of the White people he referred to in context to racism in America.
Netflix flexed its White power and made an executive decision to support Chappelle’s comedy show not only financially, but also with the corporation’s marketing and PR. Netflix chose a Black man over the White LGBTQIA+ community. It wasn’t personal, it was just business. The company must have figured the deal with Chappelle was worth it in the short and long term. Netflix’s CEO played both sides of an argument, doubling down on its support of the comedian and the content of the special to rebuke the power of the White LGBTQIA+ community. The White CEO at Netflix hid behind a Black man’s words to make his point.
Netflix is a communication entity. A producer of programs so to speak. If you want to take it even further, Netflix is a huge propagandist whether folks want to believe it or not. Its mission is to communicate to millions of people globally about whatever it deems valuable and necessary. Several messages are being sent all at once with this Netflix thing.
If you think this is about the LGBTQIA+ and Dave Chappelle’s special you’re missing the big picture.
This fight with a communication giant is about White Supremacy, birds of a White feather flocking together, the code White folks follow hypnotically, and anti-Blackness.
If you don’t learn to comprehend White Supremacy, you’ll never understand anything you see. The White LGBTQIA+ community is no friend to Black community members. They’ll use your minority status just like White women and turn on you as soon as they get what they want if not before then. A fool who doesn’t learn from history is doomed to repeat him or herself.
Take heed and learn from these examples. Putting your eggs in the basket of White Supremacy will get you nothing but broken eggs. Form your alliances carefully and understand White people have power. Black folks do not. I don’t care how much a White member of the LGBTQIA+ community cries about being a minority, when they need to be White, they can be.
Black folks don’t have that luxury.
A day is coming when the Black LGBTQIA+ community will no longer be welcomed under the White LGBTQIA+ tent, and that day is coming soon. They aren’t the allies you think they are.
White trans livelihoods will always trump Black ones. Black family members should take note.
The next time you think about doing something crazy that could possibly get you fired, locked up or that could ruin your professional career, just remember, the White LGBTQIA+ community doesn’t do the same. You’re their workhorses, it’s not the other way around.
If you’re ever in doubt, just remember Netflix, their CEO, Jaclyn Moore, and all the trans White folks still employed with Netflix, and okay. That’s real White Supremacy in action, and if you’re a Black trans person you’ll never have that kind of power, no matter how close you get to the White LGBTQIA+ community. They are always ready to us at the drop of a dime, even if you’re working on their behalf.
If you’re a Black LGBTQIA+ family member fighting their battles, my love, you’re fighting a battle you’re going to lose — every single time.
Marley K., 2021
If you enjoyed this perspective, perhaps you may enjoy a more nuanced one here on Medium by Rose Anderson: