Posting a “black out photo” on social media for #blackouttuesday can be a well-intended expression of solidarity with the black community. It may even be an important first step for some who have yet to speak out about racism in America. However, at its worst, it may make certain white people feel like they’ve “checked a box” and “done enough.” Not only that, but overuse of the Black Lives Matter hashtag for black out photos also results in “flooding the hashtag.” These posts overshadow those containing useful information such as attorney contact information, organizations to donate to, and more.
For white people in America, it is up to each of us to first listen. Then, we must seek greater knowledge about our country’s deeply rooted racism. It is an undue burden on our colleagues and friends of color to teach us about racism and do the mental work for us. For white people who are interested in getting more intentional about deepening anti-racism work, the below are a list of resources to help aid in that effort. This list is by no means exhaustive. Start by picking one book, one article, or one podcast. Pick a friend to talk to about it and hold you accountable.
And, instead of or after posting a blackout photo today, consider highlighting black artists, business people and change makers to use your platform to amplify black voices.