There are so many facets to the LGBTQ community. In order to be able to truly support the LGBTQ community in its entirety, it is our responsibility to ensure we are able to see the breadth of diversity that exists within this label in regards to race and ethnicity, in regards to class, in regards to ableness, religion, etc. At this year’s Camp Pride, we asked our Queer People of Color Caucus to brainstorm just a few things that white allies can do in order to better support people of color within the movement. What follows is a compilation of these points. As you read them, imagine how much closer we could be to a truly just and equitable world if we could see everyone in our community. -J. Mason, Camp Pride 2013 Faculty Member
How to be an Ally to Queer People of Color (QPOC)
A List by the QPOC Caucus
1. Understand LGBTQ Stereotypes and how they often do not include people of color.
2. Be open to different types of communication (restricting to modern/standard English is in and of itself oppressive.)
3. Learn all of the terms of the Rainbow Spectrum (downe, stud, same gender loving (SGL), dom, etc…)
4. Understand Appropriation (twerking, two-spirit, sass/invoking of black womanhood stereotypes)
5. Just Listen (Defer until you understand)
6. Don’t apologize for your privilege or guilt; don’t thank me for sharing what POC folks have known to be true for years
7. Find other white folks to process your white guilt.
8. Understand how people of color have helped to pave the way for the work you do. (Inclusive LGBTQ History, Stonewall, etc…)
9. Don’t just know who’s missing from the room; invite those folks to create the space with you.
10. Know that our community experiences regarding race are more complex than simply just Black/White
11. Know that just because we do not discuss the impact of racism in our lives on a daily basis, that our everyday realities as people of color are in fact shaped by the continuous institution and perpetuation of racism especially when it goes unaddressed.
Photo Credit: Katie Simmons-Barth