You know what’s getting me worked up today? The fact that Blacks and Asians don’t work together more often to combat racism and white supremacy.
We’re working towards the same thing, and against the same thing, you know? But more specifically, Blackness and Asianness are the polar opposites on the very same racist colonialist heteropatriarchal dichotomy. Where Blackness is denigrated for being too masculine, Asian identity is denigrated for being too feminine. Where Blacks are out of control, Asians are too submissive. Blacks are too dark, and Asians are the right colour but the wrong race. If we turned our polarised energies towards each other, we could put more stress on that neutralised, un-raced, apolitical middle ground where “real” and “decent” resides, and break the rod the false dichotomy is etched into.
Keeping the focus on White-Black racism also works to perpetuate the colonial divide-and-conquer strategy. White supremacy has no work to do if the racialized groups will just fight each other. It can afford to be unreflective, to justify its presence, to de-politicise its politics, make its words colourblind, and continue to assume its values to be neutral, because by turning against each other, we’re churning the wheel that has white supremacy as it’s midpoint. We’re spinning around each other, when we should be coming together and knocking over the fulcrum.
This isn’t to say that anti-Blackness doesn’t need its own perspective. Rather, I think that I ( or We, whatever) need to do more work to point out that anti-Blackness is actually just one form of White supremacy. We are living the same injustice, it’s just presenting under two of its myriad wicked masks. We need to give White supremacy something to do, something to feel threatened by, and that needs to be collective action among all racialized people, putting our voices together on how colonialism has ruined it for us all.
We should be agitating towards justice together.
I should be doing more. I don’t have more Asian friends because I have not done nearly enough work to recognize and push back against the ways anti-Blackness comes from the very same source of anti-Asian racism too.