White supremacy is killing us. Literally. And white people need to wake the fuck up.
On Saturday, Charlottesville became a hashtag overnight as racial violence erupted in its streets. Armed with hate speech and racist symbols, hundreds of neo-Nazis, Klan members, and white supremacists marched through town intentionally inciting race riots and committing acts of terror against counter-protesters. A brutal vehicular attack left 1 person dead and 19 more injured. In total, three people died and 35 people were injured throughout Saturday’s events. Many of the victims were people of color.
Across the nation, people have taken to social media to express their outrage and shock. White people in particular have gotten into their feelings. They have posted messages of “love over hate,” added anti-Nazi frames to their Facebook profile pictures, and have been doing what white people do best: making it about them. White feelings have opened a virtual floodgate of white tears. Because for some reason, white folks—the very group responsible for our ongoing dehumanization—continue to act surprised by white terror. But it should come as no surprise. America’s racism problem is and always has been a white problem.
Meanwhile, people of color are tired, exhausted, and traumatized. We are hurt, both physically and emotionally. We are terrified for ourselves, our families, and our communities.
Let us rest. Let us heal.
White people: We need more than your empty words and gestures of solidarity. We need action. You are responsible for racism, so you are responsible for undoing it.
Do. The. Work.
It’s time to get over your white feelings, collect your own, and put your money where your mouth is. Pay up your white supremacy reparations NOW by taking the following actions:
First, support the victims who put their lives on the line.
The community of Charlottesville needs our support, especially the victims of Saturday’s domestic terrorist attack. Help raise funds to cover the costs of the physical and emotional trauma from the vehicular attack and other acts of violence. Donate to fundraisers for people of color who sustained injuries here.
Next, support the community and local social justice groups.
Help financially support anti-racist activism in Charlottesville. By making a donation to these community fundraisers and organizations, you are committing to on-the-ground social justice work and supporting those fighting white supremacy on the front lines.
THE TIME TO ACT IS NOW. White American supremacists are counting on violence and intimidation to further their nationalist agenda. We need to fight back. We need to be loving and vigilant support systems for people of color being threatened collectively and individually. A safety pin or pink-knitted hat isn’t gonna cut it. The battle against white supremacy calls for some real weaponry, and it starts with financially repairing the physical and emotional damage of white terror and racial trauma.
So, white people, what will you do today to fix this shit?
Because your silence and inaction are killing us.
*This piece was originally published on Medium