Thanks to dueling hashtags on Friday the 13th, Twitter users got a front row seat to a course on intersectionality. In light of the numerous sexual assault and harassment allegations against Hollywood big wig Harvey Weinstein and actress Rose McGowan’s subsequent Twitter suspension after days of railing against Hollywood sexism and Weinstein in particular, some women vowed to boycott Twitter. In particular, they used the hashtag #WomenBoycottTwitter to publicize the online show of solidarity.
Celebrities and everyday women alike shared tales of sexual harassment and assault and posted the hashtag before shutting down their timelines for the day. Some men latched on to the hashtag as well to show their support. On the surface, it seemed like a fairly typical Twitter show of force for a topic that was dominating headlines.
Some women of color, particularly Black women, however, saw the #WomenBoycottTwitter hashtag as yet another example of white so-called feminists only advocating on issues when the victims are mostly white women. Where was all the outrage from these chest-thumping, Twitter critiquing “feminists” when journalist Jemele Hill was under fire for her tweets or when comedic actress Leslie Jones was drowning in racist drivel or the countless times that Twitter and real life trolls have threatened, harassed, and assaulted black women with little to no consequences?
Calling white women allies to recognize conflict of #WomenBoycottTwitter for women of color who haven’t received support on similar issues.
— Ava DuVernay (@ava) October 13, 2017
Y’all can boycott if you wish, but I will be here shaming those who defended/went quiet on R. Kelly but are weeping and wailing this week
— Jamilah Lemieux (@JamilahLemieux) October 13, 2017
The biggest advocates for Black women and girls have historically always been Black women and girls. When little Black girls go missing, when Black women are the targets of sexual predators, when Black women only get the “clean-up” roles after a company is killing itself in a flame pit of sexism and racism, Black women are the most vocal and sometimes the only voice. On top of that, these courageous everyday acts often go unheralded. For those reasons, April Reign (creator of #OscarsSoWhite) introduced the #WOCAffirmation hashtag to the world.
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SOURCE: The Root – Demetria Irwin