David Rivera, Derald Wing Sue, Economic inequality, gay christian, gender privilege, heterosexism, LGBTQ, micro-aggression, Person of color, Race and ethnicity in the United States Census, Racism, sexism, sexual minority, White people, White privilege
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I learned a new term today. Micro-aggression. Referring to the subtle, almost imperceptible ways we posture ourselves against a person who is different than us, usually a person not having the same privileges as us.
For instance. Color. White folks who have white privilege may not consciously or intentionally make aggressive acts toward Black folks, but there, “The brief and everyday slights, insults, indignities and denigrating messages sent to people of color by well-intentioned white people who are unaware of the messages being communicated.”(Derald Wing Sue, David Rivera, Phsychology Today. See link below.) All of which add to non-white folks not feeling safe in a pre-dominantly white space.
I learned the term in context of a discussion on racism and white privilege in a place where we also address sexuality and gender privilege. The same sort of micro aggressions that White folks commit against all other ethnic minorities, Heterosexual folks also can commit against all other sexual minority groups. Just in the same way that there are micro-aggressions still committed against women by men, strictly because of gender.
This is not good, but also not very well known. Even me, as I write this now, still don’t know enough about micro-aggression to give specific examples. But I would like to learn. And I found a couple links which I posted below.
I challenge you, my lovely reader, to learn with me. Learn about micro-aggression. About the experiences of people different than you. At least look deep inside and learn about yourself; pay close attention to how you act toward people of different color, gender, sexual orientation, socio-economic status, religion. How do you look at them? What do you think of them? What do you say or not say to them? What would you do if one of them wanted to talk to your five year old on the bus?
If we are aware of these things, we can discuss them rationally and intelligently. And clearly more communication needs to happen. More conversations must happen between Black and White communities. Straight and Queer. Rich and Poor. Religious and Non-Religious. Men and Women. How else can there be cooperation? Collaboration? Compassion? (Okay, forgive me for my alliteration). But how else can we different people help each other if we don’t talk to each other?