I don’t know how many times I’ve said on this blog that “I try very hard not to be political here, but …” and then I say what I need to say.
There aren’t going to be any more preambles when I say what I need to say.
Yesterday, I left yet another group for romance writers. I didn’t do it with any fanfare, or statements like “I’m taking my pail and shovel and going home.” I shook the dust from my shoes and walked away. I’m sure I won’t be missed; I’m a not-quite-midlist author, for starters, and there are more than 7,000 people in that group. I’m not one of the cool kids.
The decision was an easy one, after one of the members made the following statement in a discussion of whether or not to use wide distribution sources for one’s books:
“Aside from that, I vowed never to go KOBO again after their recent political announcement to the entire world (tacky).”
Here is the statement that the author deemed tacky:
We want to take the time to acknowledge that many in our global community are in pain and experiencing feelings of fear, fury and heartbreak. We at Kobo Writing Life stand firmly in solidarity with Black Lives Matter.
Complete post may be found here. Please click through; it has an excellent resource list compiled by Kobo’s staff.
I’m not going to name and shame that author, who (no surprise) is white. She’s part of the overall societal problem, though.
We white people are the ones who need to fix racism. After all, it’s our problem. Black people and people of color did not create the white supremacist systems that all white people benefit from, whether or not we are racist ourselves. White privilege isn’t about having “stuff” or money; it’s about the color of your skin resulting in you being treated differently.
Don’t believe it happens? Look up the photos of heavily armed white protestors storming the Michigan capitol building to threaten Governor Whitmer … and see how none of those people were arrested for brandishing weapons (let alone for the clear commission of terrorist acts). Then, look up the photos of George Floyd’s murder (or any number of others) by a cop for being merely suspected of committing a crime.
When my dad died, I wrote about how he gave the bride away at a wedding wherein one of his Black students married a white woman. Her family refused to attend. To this day, they’ve never met their (now adult) grandchildren or their great grandchildren. I was a little girl when Joe and Christine got married, but I took on the lesson that it’s important to love people, whether or not they look like you. I don’t pretend to be “color blind,” like so many well-intentioned white people do. I won’t erase other people’s ethnicity, because it also erases their experiences.
I didn’t mean to center this so much on myself. To be perfectly honest, I’m sorting out my ongoing feelings of anger and disappointment at the behavior of white people in this country.
We need to fix our shit. Truly, we need to have fixed it long ago. Now we need to move forward and keep our promise of liberty and justice FOR ALL.