Could You BE Any More Tone-Deaf?

{Post title to be read in Chandler Bing voice, if that wasn’t obvious}

If you are a white blogger or influencer and you’re not pausing your standard content, what are you even doing with your life? I understand the desire to go back to normal, but now is not the time. Returning to regularly scheduled programming is essentially ignoring the massive issues our country is facing and brushing social injustice under the rug. We can not pretend this is not happening.

I, too, am yearning for positivity. I am in a funk and seeing pretty things typically helps me get out of a capital M mood. But this is not a breakup you’re trying to get over. You’re sad about the state of the world? GOOD. Maybe if you’re sad long enough, you’ll be more inclined to help fix things.

Even influencer Arielle Charnas and her blog Something Navy have addressed the issue. On both platforms you can find posts about Black Lives Matter and resources for education and donation. The unattainable fashion and views of her $6.1MM apartment you’d normally see are absent from those feeds. I took MAJOR issue with how Charnas handled the COVID situation (that’s a post for another day), but at least she’s being appropriate now. Could she have shared what she is personally doing/donating? Yes, with such a large and impressionable following, that kind of personal touch carries a lot of influence. But she’s still doing something.

I am surprised to see how many influencers are not taking a pause. In these times, I don’t think it’s ok to just go dark – we need more. It’s not just about not perpetuating racist behavior, it’s about actively taking steps to be antiracist. Still, going dark would be better than simply going business as usual. I was shocked to see regular ol everyday posts about dresses and swimwear on Southern Curls and Pearls, Pink Peonies, and Born on Fifth. We are in the middle of a pandemic where nobody can go on vacation and a huge portion of the country has no access to an ocean or pool – NOW IS NOT THE TIME TO TELL US ABOUT THE SEASON’S BEST SWIMWEAR. I’m sorry if that means you’ll be getting less money from affiliate links, but those barely pay out anyway – the real money for influencers is in partnerships, so the return on a tone deaf post about swimwear while people are literally being murdered with unjust cause can not be high enough to make such a post worth it. A community is in pain right now and telling you – explicitly – that more than anything they want you to listen. Pay attention to them! Your response to their plea is to post about sundresses? Do you think that’s more important?

In the midst of suffering, people have gone above and beyond to provide resources that will help you be a proper ally to the black community. None of those resources suggest posting about summer fashion. Read. The. Room.

Here’s a link to story on Medium, which is exactly what you read above but includes a list of people who are think are doing it right.