Shades of America’s first black president in 2010 telling Republicans (aka white people) that “they can come for the ride, but they gotta sit in back.” This time it was blacks at a Michael Brown vigil in Toronto who were assigning second-class-citizen status to whites (and “non-black POC”). From the Daily Mail:
A set of rules for white people at a vigil for Michael Brown in Canada has sparked controversy with critics accusing organizers of promoting segregation.
‘Non black allies’ were told to ‘refrain from taking up space in all ways possible’ and ‘never be at the centre of anything’ at the event in Toronto on November 25.
The Facebook page also advised white demonstrators to ‘refrain from speaking to the media’ and ‘stand behind black folks or between us and the police’.
A screen capture of the entire set of rules, which were posted on Facebook, follows:
Nearly 300 comments had been posted on [organizer Bilan] Arte’s note by Wednesday morning.
The first commenter, Hamdi Loukoum, asked: “Wow, is this an anti-racist rally or a pro-segregation one?”
Loukoum’s comment received 24 “likes.”
Another commenter, Liam Noakes, said the vigil “should be looking to enhance different colours standing up and showing their support for blacks, which would mean speaking to the media and rallying in the same space as us.
“You want a change, you can’t start excluding people just because they can’t go through what we can. Gay rights activists who aren’t gay make a huge difference, just like black rights activists who aren’t black always will.”
CTV notes that some protesters rejected the idea that this action was exclusionary. A commenter named Nicole Desnoyers wrote:
We need to stop equating centralizing black voices to segregation. This ‘argument’ is used by white/non-black folks way too often and continuously derails conversations around fighting anti-black racism or doing anti-racism in a larger sense.
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