news

Read This Before Texting Your Black Friend

Pinterest LinkedIn Tumblr

We get it. As ongoing Black Lives Matter demonstrations continue across the country and more examples of egregious police brutality make headlines, you want to be a thoughtful white ally.

But there are some things you need to consider before sending off that text message of support to your Black friends. Here are 3 of them. 

  1. A text from a white ally can be seen as performative allyship — a way to ease your emotional (white) guilt in hopes that your one Black friend can relieve you from that guilt. Instead, listen to your friend without the need for self-fulfillment. 
  2. Black people are not here to teach you about injustice. If you’re texting them to learn more about the history of racial injustice, you should definitely read a book or watch a movie on the topic first. This way, your conversation can have a discussion about the next steps instead of your Black friend lecturing you on racial inequality. 
  3. Black Americans with lower socioeconomic status are affected by police brutality disproportionately and should be the target of your sympathetic energy. So, your Black friend from college with the Ivy league connections and trust fund might not be the right person to focus on when trying to figure out how you can be an ally.

To learn more about how to best demonstrate your allyship, read the full article on BuzzFeed.

Robbie Couch is a writer based in Los Angeles who’s covered progressive politics, social justice, and pop culture news for a number of publishers, including HuffPost, Upworthy, and O, The Oprah Magazine. Robbie has an LGBTQ-themed young adult novel, “The Sky Blues,” publishing in 2021.