How to Outrage: An Interactive Primer

 Gloria Richardson | Cambridge, Maryland | 1963 | "She Wasn't There For It" *      

Gloria Richardson | Cambridge, Maryland | 1963 | "She Wasn't There For It" *      

More likely than not, you're expecting some sort of interactive primer here. Probably, because of the title. And more likely than not, in this very moment, you're realizing that that's not what this is... My bad. Let's just say that you reading the words that I wrote make this interactive and keep it moving... Because, [good news] it is, actually, about outrage! Me being pissed off by all the outrage. Not just because it seems like there is always something to be outraged about. But because it seems like several of my peers don't understand why, for muh-fuckin mental health reasons, I have chosen to refrain from every day public [read: social media] displays of protest. 

I cannot pretend; however, that it is not amazing to be alive at such a pivotal time in humanity's history. To witness people other than people of color openly discuss issues involving race and sexes other than female openly discuss issues on sexism, I must admit, is refreshing. What I've found problematic in all of this is that several of these non people of color/sexes other than female have taken it upon their meddling ass selves to tell me how I should express my outrage. Yes. These mofos think it's somehow their personal responsibility to tell me exactly when/where/how I'm supposed to react to the troubles of the world... How 'bout Miss Rachel ain't here for it?

I don't know if it's me being in my 40s (prolly) or just being through with racist, sexist, xenophobic, transphobic, nationalistic... bullshit (that, too), but, here we are. Can't even begin to express how over I am of this constant stream of prejudicial bullshit that I, like many others, were brainwashed to accept and shake off for reasons I can only presume. But. It's happening. It's all being undone. The patriarchy. The slave/overseer thing. Religion. All being undone!  Did I mention that it's an amazing time to be alive? Oh. Because. It is.

Back to the lecture at hand... Unfortunately, in this time of great change and transition, a certain subset of humans, several aforementioned non people of color and sexes other than female, have taken it upon themselves to admonish me for failing to react to the constant outrage in whatever way this week's social media campaign told us to do so. In all the ways that their asses ain't helping... Did I mention that Miss Rachel ain't here for it? Oh. Because. She ain't.

From how I should be using my law degree, to telling me how wrong I am for speaking out against all the bullshit I've PERSONALLY experienced, these non people of color and/or sexes other than female have seemingly got me all kinds of fucked up. Just because I choose against expressions of outrage in social media, doesn't mean I'm not involved in some way. Just because my version of activism doesn't involve sharing the same meme a good 33% of my friends have also shared, doesn't mean I don't care about the issues. I do what I can, when I can, where I can. And for real. Y'all social media warriors ain't doing shit. Not even making y'alls own memes. Nope. Barely doing research on the shit y'all profess as truth. Just passing on the efforts of other people. "But you ain't heard it from me..." - Benita Butrell

 Greensboro, North Carolina | 1960*

Greensboro, North Carolina | 1960*

And these "warriors" who ain't really doing shit always wanna weigh in on what I should be doing. Dafuck? Mofos struggling with only like 2 years of actual outrage. Shiiiiiit, I got they asses by 40. Their outrage still wearing diapers, while mine has a few degrees, a spouse, a fucking mortgage, and it sips whisky. And muh-fuckas still coming at me with how to express my outrage??? Bitch, please. I believe it was the great Rachel M Walls who said, "I ain't here for it." Because I'm not.

This choice to remain calm in the face of every kind of evil, is not an easy one. Trust. But... I recognize how the media sensationalizes certain stories to fit their narrative of how they want the world to work. I know that these things are to keep us distracted from our selves, our communities, our actual world. I understand political theater and have firsthand knowledge that most things in DC are done simply for the look of it. And they've done this shit before. Maybe not all at the same time like the shitsharknado we're presently experiencing. But, like my grandma used to say, "ain't a damn thing new under the sun."

And I'm not alone in having hella experience with such feelings. So I'ma let y'all in on a little secret why so many people of color who are also sexes that are female are surprisingly calm through all the things we're supposed to be outraged over: that shit is in our DNA. Recall photos of people of color being harassed while trying to do basic shit like order lunch or simply go to school. We are used to being subject to all kinds of bullshit at the hands of non people of color and/or sexes other than female. Or should I say, were.

And by we, I mean Black women. We, as Black women are tired. Collectively tired of the way this system has subjugated us into positions far beneath the roles we were made for. We are leaders. The most educated in this country. And. Did y'all catch the part about us being tired!?!?!? After centuries of fighting, begging, asking y'all to just treat us equally [read: stop this oppressive ass bullshit], we have continually found ourselves drowning in a sea of less in nearly all of our spaces, for far, far too long. In our homes. In the workplace. In this world. Somehow through it all we shine. We thrive. We laugh. We are resilience. We know that through all that is coming, we goin' make it. We will shine. We will thrive. And our laughter will be loud. Because that's what the fuck we do.

So instead of attempting to explain my calm. My peace. My ability to think critically about the current trending outrage, I. AM. NOT here for y'all muh-fuckas coming at me telling me how I should be processing what's happening in the world or what I should be doing about it... I am here to set y'alls asses straight if and when y'all do. 

Play with it.

*📷s: wikicommons