If you follow the writing world, you may have heard the uproar last month over Timothy Green's response to criticism involving poets of color and Rattle Magazine. Of course, I commented on it as well (and the whole thing is there, somewhere).
I was told at one point that I (a white person) was distracting from an issue raised by people of color by bringing up my own differences in response to someone mentioning multiple minorities existing in one person. It was THEIR grievance and I had NO right. It doesn't matter disabled people are unlawfully murdered, seen as lesser, silenced (sound familiar?)... NO other minority should derail the issue, it was about RACISM. Period. **I'm a thin-skinned weakling, so I cried more than a few tears over one woman's responses.**
I had a woman of color (not on Facebook) bring up a history of the United States Government forcibly sterilizing "her people" and telling me disabled people have no experience with such things. I laughed for about five minutes.
Apparently, minorities are out for their own groups... own issues. I was mentioning (there and elsewhere) how difficult things are for people even without my issues, without my differences... not just those like me. But... time marches on...
This month, the AWP (Association of Writers & Writing Programs) has received complaints about accommodations and inclusion of disabled writers. They claim to want panels on disability, yet rejected every one proposed. It has caused an uproar.
Many people are talking about the inclusion of minorities, all minorities, at the AWP conference. Yeah! Great! And then... people of color and LBGT and more women in publishing and... nothing. It shifted.
Now, after everything said to me last month over Rattle Magazine, I'm downright surly over the disappearing act. I can't bring up any other differences that need a spotlight when another minority is involved but when disability is in the forefront, it is perfectly fine to shoehorn in, and then erase, disabled people. This was "our issue". If I didn't believe certain things, I would quickly become a harpy on anyone "taking away" from disabled voices.
Honestly, I feel everyone should stand up for everyone else, so I don't mind when an issue arises people saying, "Yeah, that's wrong and you need to address other problems, too". We can be many together, SHOULD be together. Minorities wouldn't be such small groups if we stood up for each other, with each other, and if (at least some of) the majority would also join us, things could change.
Instead, we are too busy looking after ourselves to make real progress.
It makes me angry. It makes me sad. It saps my hope.
But... time marches on... perhaps... someday...
Have you heard about either controversy? What are your thoughts?
Not familiar with the issue, but agree completely that 'everyone should stand up for everyone else'.ReplyDelete
It's what I believe, and I know I'm not alone. I just wish more people would see the benefit of reaching beyond themselves or things that just impact them.Delete
I just watched someone rudely shoot down someone on a forum. She had said something and the person replied, "This isn't the appropriate place to say that." The woman shot back, "But it IS the appropriate place for me to state my opinion, which I did." I thought, "You go, girl!" I think people get so caught up in their agendas, they don't realize they're offending the very people who might unite with them and help them with their cause. The key to convincing people to hear your point of view is not to shoot them down but to be KIND to them!ReplyDelete
I wish I could be like that. I'm very sensitive, especially for being a writer! I tend to back down rather than stand my ground if someone is attacking me. If it is someone I love though, I fight until resolution.Delete
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