Just today, I posted a comment to a giveaway that a company is hosting. I didn’t want to sugarcoat my response (“What knitting problem do you have?”), but I also wasn’t going to hide my feeling that we’re still collectively rushing past and through the painful parts of growth.
I said something along the lines of my problem being that we’re having this huge moment of a changing dynamic and some want to go back to having giveaways & contests like nothing happened. It was neither malicious nor malevolent, but I did run out of any and all f**ks to give.
They blocked me. They deleted my comment and blocked me. Did no one think of the optics? Mind you, a few people replied to my comment in their post and agreed with my sentiment. They thought they were so smart, but weren’t smart enough to see that their actions shot themselves in the foot. People took note and took action. I didn’t ask anyone to stop using their products, but I won’t discourage people from it, either.
So, this…this is where we are. If you want to make some effective changes in your life/craft, speak up. Take the recommendations of the many people whose IG handles grace our stories. If you need some help starting your learning, say so. Some of us are sharing resources and links, even though it’s neither obligation nor duty. We want to give people the tools to do better, but you better be wise with our time.
If you want to go back to when your hobby (your peace, your calm, your “thing”) was untainted, then put the blinders back on and keep on truckin’. But what you won’t do is act like you want peace & harmony (because it sounds nice, doesn’t it?) when you’re really impeding the progress of those who want to condemn/are condemning anti-racism. THAT is the moment when you will be told about yourself and asked to have a figurative (and maybe literal) seat.
I think there are a lot of people who genuinely don’t know what the hell to do. They might feel that they’ll be damned for speaking up (GIVE THE MIC TO BIPOC #ALLLLLLLYYYYYYY) and damned for being silent (SILENT IS COMPLICITY!). There needs to be some room for people to fuck up, apologize, and keep growing and doing what needs to be done to make the craft community inclusive of everyone.
Think about your craft skills when you were a beginner and think about your craft skills now. It took time and practice to get where you are, didn’t it? I don’t think there’s any fiber craft that does not require practice to improve. It’s the same with anti-racism. You read, you talk to others who are more skilled and more knowledgeable on certain topics, and you learn. You might get a little experimental and want to get loud and angry on others’ behalf. You might find out that you’re doing way too much.
Seriously, some of y’all mean well, but chilllllllllllllllllllll out. We appreciate it, but we’re not driving you to the hospital when your heart can’t take the stress. Let the racists get worked up. You be cool. Don’t have that desire for equality turn you into a keyboard toughguy. The dummies will still be there the next day, but make sure that it’s a true dummy and not somebody who just needs to be shown better. It doesn’t take long to tell who’s who.
I don’t want this to become a fade in-fade out moment because people were scared away by people who are going to the max. I also don’t want people to feel that enough has been done and we can all just relax. There is no relax. Some of us never had that option to begin with.
Happy Black History Month!
- Ruby Bridges is 64 years old. Think about that. She got married in 1984. Segregation wasn’t that long ago. Save that “such a long time ago” mess.
- Here are some more facts.
- Go Google “Black Wall Street” and “origins of the modern police”.