…lies in the diversity of its people.
Intersectionality- an empowering idea by Kimberlé Crenshaw, especially for the black woman! Society has constrained us to pick a side. So am I a feminist? Or am I fighting against racial inequality? Why not both?
It’s like when you, yes you, ask me where I’m from, and I’m compelled to say ‘Africa’ as if that is my country. You don’t realize that when you generalize me as an African or even as black, I lose my identity. Will a Chinese, or a Japanese, or even a Korean broadly identify as Asian or will they straight up tell you what country they’re from?
Anyway, back to my point. We are all individually unique people and there’s diversity in multitude aspects of life, not just race, gender, or sexuality. Society has defined the ‘ideal’ human as the white, blonde, thin, heterosexual, while none of us really chose the circumstances of our birth. I didn’t choose to be black nor to be female, but really, what makes me different from you past, perhaps, my gender and my race? This is a real issue. You know privilege is when you think something is not a problem because it’s not a problem to you personally.
Sometimes, the idea of being perfect scares some people. I remember a time in one of my classes when this girl blatantly claimed she was ‘3% Jew’. I couldn’t help but let out my suppressed laugh at this absurdity. I guess she was shaken by the fact that she is ‘too perfect’ or something, but what really is perfect?
Intersectionality calls us to advocate for who we uniquely are – your entire individual self. We are beautifully and wonderfully made, so you don’t necessarily just have to be black, or female, or whatever other label. You don’t have to pick a side, but to embrace your entire self.
Come on, let’s face it – all these labels are just social constructs and just a basis for discrimination. We have to cherish everyone! So I have skin dipped in chocolate and gold, kissed by the African sun, and I don’t feel disempowered. That is not my weakness, but my strength. After all, I am obsessed in becoming a women comfortable in her own skin!
My only dream is one of a world where we can all put aside the hate, and love each other as one. Because beyond all the diversity, we are one, and I’m more similar yet dissimilar to you than you think.
Can’t we just love everybody? Don’t hesitate to use your voice! When you speak, speak with boldness and with purpose! But most importantly, you have to LOVE yourself! Never ever apologize for who you are!
I recently attended a Student Diversity Leadership Conference a couple of weeks ago, where I first encountered the term ‘intersectionality’. I have always advocated for equality in all aspects of life, thus, this leadership conference enabled me to have intelligent conversations with others who feel the same, and broaden my understanding of the topic. Click here to tell me of your suggestions, thoughts, experiences, or any questions you may have on diversity, inclusion or anything else!
You are beautiful, and don’t let anyone tell you otherwise! 🙂