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Sex & Gender

White Feminism’s concept of “unity” is a joke. Shoot me

January 12, 2018
By Nyar Afrika, AFROPUNK contributor

 

Let me give you advice you obviously didn’t ask for because well, that’s what most Kenyans do. Give unsolicited advice that is.

Okay? Good.

When you go to an event where majority of the organizers are white women, like the Women’s March for example, please, leave all the fucks at home. Give zero fucks. No filter. No respectability politics. Give zero fucks about snowflakes and hurting feelings. Be yourself.

A strong African woman.

You know why? Because white feminism is on a class of it’s own. It’s funny. It’s a joke. It’s hilarious. It’s comical and it doesn’t give a shit about you as a black woman. As an african woman. As a woman of colour. Unless it intersectional, fuck it. Stay away from it. Be a radical African Feminist.

When I was first discovering things about myself as a young feminist, I thought feminism was all about equality. That it was all about men and women getting the same opportunities irregardless of who they were and also fucking patriarchy. Real hard.

As I continued to explore and learn, I realized that for me, feminism was complicated. It went beyond equality of the sexes. It came with race, sexuality, gender, common stereotypes of what feminism was: Obviously from the narrative fed to us about what feminism is.

I mean, how many times have we heard Tamika proudly call herself a feminist while labelling black women as “angry”? Don’t we have any right to be angry? Police brutality? Racism? Sexual harassment? Rape? Gentrification? Neo-colonized bastards aka house negroes? Paedophilia? Homophobia? The murder of black trans persons? The murder of queer women in Africa? Anyone? Anyone?

Then when we tell them about our pain, they say we’re overreacting, leaving us wondering if we’re too sensitive.
Listen, we are not too sensitive. White feminism is too raaaaacist which is perfectly clear when white feminists ignore our frustrations.

How many times have we been accused of pulling the race card when we told white women they have no right talking about our experiences as black women because they can’t relate? Have you ever been accused of being divisive just because you said you don’t want white women lumping together everyone’s experiences for the mere fact that we are women?

Even when Sandra Bland was hanging limply from a noose in a police cell, what did white feminists say?
“Are you sure it was suicide because remember, we are all in this together. ”
Yo! That’s where it gets fishy. If we were “all in this together”, why has white feminism failed to address the issues of black people? We have different experiences and schools of thought yet there is only one narrative of feminism that the mainstream media constantly pushes:

WHITE FEMINISM.

In white feminism, the concept of unity as a show of support for “women’s issues” is usually based on white, middle class, cisgender, able-bodied women. Not queer women. Not black women. Not poor women. Not women who work as sex workers or strippers. Not women who live with disabilities. Not the uneducated woman struggling to make ends meet. No.

It’s all about “one size fits all”

The rest of us shouldn’t.

If it requires you to set aside your needs in the name of unity, fuck it.

If it involves stepping over marginalized voices to pursue a tainted vision of what equality is, fuck it.
Another common phrase of white feminism.

“Why Do You Hate White People?”

Some white feminists can’t actually understand why someone would object to “unity” like how dare you? How dare you talk about race? How dare you highlight black issues when all of us are groped in the streets like how dare you!

Man, that was intense.

These yt feminist always come to a conclusion that black feminists who speak out against racism are actually anti-white. They are raaacist!

“Why do you bring up race. You are not helping the movement grow as one by being divisive so how will you contribute to liberation of all us from patriarchy?

Patriarchy eeh?

Listen African feminist, it’s not your job to unlearn racism for a white feminist. Most of them refuse to decolonize their minds. They will be screaming equality when wanting to be paid the same as white men but will still be treating black people shit. They will be yelling “pussy power!” but will turn around and elect a well known pussy grabber because well… He is white. They will be crying equality but will all of a sudden feel attacked when we uplift black women.

Instead,let us acknowledge and celebrate our diversities. Let’s strive towards creating an all inclusive movement with a common feminist identity. Feminism for us means having a responsibility to keep working toward having African intersectional feminism that the next generation of young feminists will benefit from and won’t be reduced to only working for feminist organizations sponsored by white donors or even remain endlessly campaigning online.

We should create more Pan African spaces for conversations. The aim of this space should be representative; efforts are to be made to ensure diversity among those involved. We should bring in women from all back grounds with different stories and experiences. We should stories about our experiences aa African women, that which we can relate to. Remember that our current struggles as African Feminists are deeply rooted in our past as a people. Our diverse pre and postcolonial contexts, neo-colonialism, slavery, tribalism, politics and globalisation.

As we build much stronger Afro feminist movements in this age, we are also creating new identities for African women, as citizens, as people, free from patriarchal oppression, with total ownership and control over our own bodies.

We should also recognize that “her stories”-stories for women by women- require special measures to be taken in favor of African women living in different contexts. This we can do through expanding our knowledge of Afro Feminism. Looking up and reading the works of African feminists like:

  • Americanah, Purple Hibiscus, We should all be feminists, Dear Ijewale by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie.
  • So long a letter by Mariama Ba.
  • We need new names by No Violet Bulawayo.
  • Everything Good Will Come by Seffi Atta.
  • Ghana Must Go by Taiye Selasi.
  • Sula by Toni Morrison.
  • Aminatta Fona
  • The Shadow of Imana by Veronique Tadjo.

Listen Afro Feminists, unless a white woman thinks black women, black people, women of colour, thots, strippers, whores, sex workers,women living with disabilities, queer women, trans women, women living in poverty, uneducated black women,literally every woman deserves to be heard because yes, we are humans and yes, we matter, please, drink your coffee in peace and sing along to YG’s “Fuck Donald Trump.”
Oh yes. Call me the Race Baitr. 😏

*I am 21 year old queer writer who is so for everything black because yes, black lives matter.

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