What sort of person reads the Huffington Post?
If you’re white and you read that rag you must be a self-loathing white, filled with hatred of the white race.
I go there for research purposes and rapidly experience HuffPo fatigue. Such as the case in reading an article written by a black woman praising the mythical land of Wakanda, which unlike in the real world, is a black homeland functioning at a high level instead of the sh*thole level.
Brandi Miller tells whites in America that they better “know your place.” Black WOMEN rule today, she says.
“Black Panther” depicts the dignity and value of black lives on the big screen, breaking box office records and driving a celebration of blackness that I have not experienced since the 2008 election of Barack Obama. The film centers on the uncolonized African nation of Wakanda, a technologically advanced, modern, and self-sufficient nation of Pan African Black glory, with residents drenched in vibranium-laced cocoa butter.
The best part of Wakanda? Wakanda doesn’t need allies.
While “Black Panther” is almost entirely disinterested in validating the participation of whiteness in the story of T’Challa and the fate of Wakanda, it offers a model for how white people can resist the urge to simply be allies in the cause of justice and rather be useful without having to be center stage or praised.
Over the last few years of movements for equality, many white people and people with privilege have sought to become allies, people who protect and speak up for those who are oppressed and marginalized. Allyship, while seemingly helpful, often devolves into focusing on white stories, diminishing the struggle of people of color. Frankly, allyship is by nature self-congratulatory and dependent on the praise of the marginalized. Wakanda had no use or praise for a special white savior (in fact, they saved the white people), which adds to what makes “Black Panther” so revolutionary.
Void of the colonizing impulse and experience of white supremacy, Wakanda is free from the need for a white savior. “Black Panther” reflects this reality through its limited engagement with white people in the film, with only 3 white people having speaking roles: a museum employee who isn’t around very long, a short-lived villain and CIA agent Everett Ross, a diminutive sidekick at best.
At no point is he a necessary character. He heroically jumps in front of a bullet for Nakia, but these black women, who run this entire narrative and save men over and and over again with advanced technology, can cure bullet wounds overnight, begging the question did she really need to be saved? And Ross, because of the bullet he takes, becomes less of a hero and more of a burden.
The lesson of “Black Panther” for white allies is this: They must learn to be the sidekick, to be at the fringe, to give up power, to have people of color in their ears directing them on how to be useful in fighting for the cause of justice.
At the end of the day, Ross’ redemption is that he keeps engaging over and over again and is useful when he needs to be under the leadership and glory of black women. He is a model of a co-conspirator, one who, however he ended up in the room, turned from the posture of defensiveness, fragility and superiority and instead became a useful agent in the cause.
Allyship often comes with an invisible and unearned badge that gives a pass (or at least entitlement) to a person’s own problematic racism and moves the conversation from the oppressed to the one who intervened. The work becomes less about the liberation of people of color and more about showering the ally with praise.
The (unfortunate) reality is, we don’t live in Wakanda, there is not a place void of the impacts of colonialism, but the principals for white allies stand: If you are going to be here with us, be useful. If you want to speak, do so when you are needed and in the appropriate place and time. If you want to participate, do so in things that are meant for you. Know your place.
Between Obama, Oprah, and now this movie, blacks are even more delusional than in the past. “We wuz kangz” is a mind virus infecting the lot of them.
As to sensible white people, not those who want to be kicked around by black women, we prefer NOT to participate as allies, but rather as race realists. In reality, until blacks give up their gibsmedat public assistance, they have no room to talk about white people.