As a black man who deals with issues of race on a regular basis, there are times when I do not want the opinion of white men who have not and will not ever experience some of things that are commonplace for people of color. I would imagine this is similar to women who don’t always want to hear some dude’s opinion about what she should do with her body or deal with sexism. This isn’t an earth-shattering concept. Unless your name is Jamilah Lemieux.
Last Thursday Lemieux’s life was turned upside down when a random tweet about a new black Republican magazine she was sent was responded to by someone who then brought in other folks including RNC Deputy Press Secretary Raffi Williams. When she said she didn’t want any more info about Carson’s project, Williams responded “hoped you would encourage diversity of thought.” This was when Lemieux responded with…
She was unaware that Williams was black, but when she found out she apologized and alerted him that she still had no urge to have this discussion. This set off a firestorm that would ignite virtually every right-wing blog and news site and would garner a press release by Chairman of the RNC, Reince Priebus. Virtually every account of the story ignored the facts and instead painted Lemieux as a raging hateful racist and anyone who defended her was then branded as one as well.
So we decided to help set the record straight, as we #StandWithJamilah:
And on today’s show we followed up with more information plus a discussion around what is becoming a regular thing within social media–attacking Women of Color with a combo of racism/sexism and an overall lack of respect. Imani Gandy and I unpacked this today.
All this makes us wonder: Can we actually have a conversation about race without it turning into name calling and death threats?