A new group on Facebook and Twitter called White Nonsense Roundup utilizes a team of volunteers who will join in on debates on social media to “round up” white people who are, according to the group, being insensitive.
Social media conversations on race typically take one of two routes.
The first, and the one less traveled, leads to a thoughtful, fact-driven exchange of ideas. The second (more popular) route leads to bitter back-and-forth filled with tired stereotypes or racially inflammatory barbs.
But now, when discussion swerves in the second direction, there’s a group of white allies prepared to do the rerouting.
White Nonsense Roundup is a social media watchdog group with about 100 white volunteers. Its goal: to relieve people of color from the emotional labor of engaging with a person’s racist or racially insensitive thoughts […]
Think of it like roadside assistance for social media debates you’re tired of having.
“It’s really unfair that we expect people of color to experience racism, but then also explain it to us,” the group’s co-founder Terri Kempton, a book editor and college instructor, told CNN.
According to CNN, most exchange between people on Facebook and Twitter “leads to bitter back-and-forth filled with tired stereotypes or racially inflammatory barbs.”
So what constitutes bitter remarks, tired stereotypes, and inflammatory barbs?
Here’s a few CNN reposted, in full:
“Bitter remarks,” “tired stereotypes,” and “inflammatory barbs” #1:
When did our tolerance stop be tolerant? When did we stoop to level of name calling our name callers? When did we decide to tell 70 year old people of faith they have no voice? If we represent the tolerance of the world we need to be tolerant. To everyone. Until we let go of our own biases we cannot expect anyone else to do the same. Both sides of this electorate disgusts me. Meditate.
“Bitter remarks,” “tired stereotypes,” and “inflammatory barbs” #2:
I don’t really have any friends of color which is a real bummer but I don’t want to seek out friends just because they are black — that seems wrong in some way too. I live in a very white area so when I see people of color, I make sure to be friendly and be an ally because I’m not sure what else I can do. This quiz makes me uncomfortable, which I’m used to now. I wouldn’t say I’m completely ‘woke’ but I’m closer.
“Bitter remarks,” “tired stereotypes,” and “inflammatory barbs” #3:
For pete’s sake, the children want to dress up as a super hero or person they admire, if not a scary character. I think below a certain age (say, 10?) any discussion of racism or cultural appropriation will be lost on them. Let them have their fantasy fun and teach cultural sensitivity when they are old enough to understand.
Well, those sound terrible… don’t they?
I have no doubt that the internet is full of trolls, and plenty of them really do spew racist remarks. But why should any adult even tire themselves over children (or child-minded people) on the internet?
The cases listed above deal with conversations like cultural appropriation, white people and black friends, and “When did our tolerance stop be tolerant?”
Those situations, apparently, are jobs for White Nonsense Roundup. Volunteers would join in on these conversations to “educate” the posters about why they’re bigots and that what they’re saying is just “white nonsense.”
As they say on their website:
If you are a Person of Color (POC), you have enough on your plate! It’s not your job to educate white people about privilege, racism, and what’s really going on in the world. If a white person is filling your social media with white nonsense – anything from overt racism to well-intentioned problematic statements – tag us and a white person will come roundup our own. We welcome your involvement, resource suggestions, and will take your feedback seriously. We are also happy to boost the signal of voices of color.
In other words, if you dare suggest that cultural appropriation is just a natural exchange in a multicultural environment that works in all directions, then you’re a white idiot who’s asking people of color, unfairly, to educate you.
Tell us what you think of all this, and sound off in the comments below.