a note to fellow light skinned/white coding poc
January 13, 2014
earlier, i posted a link about this apparently white d00d getting a scholarship named after Franz Fanon. He is also a professor of Black studies.
now, i look at this name and i look at his picture. i read the scant available biographical information on him and pretty much everything about him points to
obviously, it is possible that he is a mixed-with-white poc. with very light skin and, very likely, not someone who often codes or is read as such. as in: he does not possess a body that is racialized in the same way (or at all) as a darker skinned and/or more obviously poc person.1
the thing is
is that both i and many others have repeatedly noted that white people absolutely should always mark their race in their bios. always. especially if they are, like this man, involved in something like Black studies. winning awards and taking up both discursive and literal space.
this inducement to mark your race also applies to mixed-with-white poc who have very light skin and may not regularly be read as a person of colour.
i know many super defensive mixed-with-white light skinned poc like to whine about how this is oppressive or makes us feel unwelcome or whatever the fuck….
particularly if you are going to get involved in discussions about decolonization, anti-colonialism, white supremacy, race, etc., we must absolutely mark our race and who we are.
not just so that others understand that we are not another white person trying to invade poc space, but also as a means to mark that we understand just what our relative position to more visibly poc peole is:
it is a position of relative privilege
and we must mark this position and mark our understanding that it means that we most definitely ought to be centering the experiences of those who are visible, who have dark skin, who never ever have even a taste of what it means to our lives that (sometimes or always) white people think we are white.
when we don”t do this?
we are indistinguishable from colonial assholes like dr. professor here.