written for all the women of color i love and hold dear to my heart. written for myself too. and in hopes that thing can change. in hopes of being heard. from love and with anger.
“radical” men who spell women as “womyn” but are as misogynistic as fuck… you can change your spelling all you want, but i still see your ass. (also, being queer doesn’t give you a free pass, as some of the most cruel and unchecked misogyny is allowed to run rampant in queer spaces.)
if you proclaim to be a “radical man” who loves and honors “womyn” of color, i ask, when you think womyn of color, who are you thinking of? what does she look like? sound like? how does she take up space? how does she show her joy, her pain, her indifference, her anger, her disdain, her fear, her resilience, her hesitation? (does she?) how does she challenge you? move you? care for you? care for herself? (does she?) how does she enunciate her words? how does she move? how does she get her points across? how does she fight? how does she make peace? how does she choose to leave her mark?
do your women of color only become “womyn” of color when they are LOUD and PRETTY and ASSERTIVE and STRAIGHT-LOOKING and SOARTICULATE and GORGEOUS and SEXY and KNOWSWHATSHEWANTS and DRESSESHELLAFLY and “REAL” and “STRONG”?
what happens when they aren’t any of those things? do you listen? do you listen to the quiet ones? the ugly ones? the insecure and awkward ones? the fat ones? the crazyfuckingsensitive ones? the ones who don’t dress cute? the ones who won’t flirt? the ones who look like boys or not enough like girls or just fucking weird either way? the ones who are shy? timid? the ones who mumble or stutter? the ones who have neither academic nor “revolutionary” language to prove their smarts? the ones who doubt themselves? the ones who need to be given care too? the ones who seem overbearing with their concerns or seem overburdened by everyone else’s? the ones who don’t seem like they would have anything to teach you about strength or resilience?
do you ignore or refuse to listen to women of color if they can’t properly command your respect or attention? do you routinely CHECK OUT, GET DISTRACTED, TEXT YOUR FRIENDS, COME UP WITH EXCUSES, LEAVE THE SPACE, GET DEFENSIVE, FEEL FRUSTRATED, or TALK SHIT when they’re going on and on about some shit that you can’t be bothered to listen to because oh god i learned that already get over yourselves or here we go again or i just can’t stand listening to her or what is her point anyway or this is so damn boring hey I have a way better idea?
do you think these ugly basic bitches would do better to learn WOMYNHOOD from their stronger, prettier, louder, more fierce, more confident, more respectable sistas?
then FUCK YOU, you disgusting, misogynistic, ignorant ass pile of shit. don’t ever fucking tokenize “strong” WOC in order to PUT OTHER WOC DOWN. lol @ every ignorant ass woman-hating shitstain talking about “strong womyn,” quoting audre lorde cherrie moraga angela davis gloria anzaldua assata shakur yuri kochiyama as if they have actually learned anything from them!!!!!!!!!! what a fucking joke.
i see y’all, thinking you don’t need to respect WOC who don’t live up to your bullshit romanticized misogynistic standards for being “down” “radical” WOC. i see y’all, working hard at maintaining lazy excuses for why you can’t check yourselves (or be checked). i see you. all of you “womyn” lovers who are only into the heterolooking conventionallypretty confidentsounding—none of this goes unnoticed. and for the queer men reading this nodding along like you get it, THIS MEANS YOU TOO.
respect women of color. do not speak over women of color. do not try to compete with women of color for space/airtime. do not shut women of color down. do not assume that you know what a woman of color is about to say or do (and that you’re better than that). do not assume all your ideas are better and more well thought out than hers. do not interrupt her when she is speaking. do not suddenly begin a lengthy text message convo when it’s her turn to speak. do not tune out, get defensive, become hostile, derail, or otherwise fuck around with her. if you silence or alienate or trigger her and she doesn’t return to that space, do not tell yourself or anyone else that it is her fault. work as if it were YOURS (because there’s a damn good chance it probably was) — build trust, educate yourself, be humble. sit your ass down and listen. if you decide that that is way too much extra work because you’re busy doing real revolutionary shit, then good fucking luck, douchebag. (you do realize that our norms around who commands and deserves attention/respect come from racism and capitalism and antiqueerness, right? …right?) because i guarantee that it will come back to you and destroy your movements, your organizing, your relationships, and any revolution you could possibly dream of.
by the way, you can keep the damn y. we don’t need some revolutionary spelling shit to know who we are.
(missing the damn point of why that spelling was even created, too.)