Hey friend, at some point maybe very recently, have you been told “how to conduct yourself” in response to negativity? This phenomenon, has probably come to you when you’ve been wronged at — work, school, a party, and or anywhere. You had no ill will at hand and wanted nothing more than to rightfully defend yourself.
If you’re not white, you’ve most likely been told to “behave” by those whom definitely are. What’s further frustrating is that the majority proceeds to dictate that “proper conduct” is to be respectful and show grace— For us and not for themselves. Because any angry minority is a symbol of them not being right. Well news flash, you have no right to speak on how marginalized people should respond to negativity aimed at them. Our lives and realities are different.
So, on the blessed (bless-id) day of January 10, 2020, actor John Boyega gave us life and new energy. In response to the negative comments and replies he received he said nah (a big nah) to all that. Via a short well edited and hilarious 35 second video; he proceeds to knock down, step over, and shoo away comments he received on social media. This was all imposed to moments while he was having a good time. This video has been viewed by many.
Side note: You can’t cry foul or speak about concerns when you leave comments on a public forum. Your name is out on the internet. Nice try though, but it’s fair game. Maybe try not leaving negative comments to people before you are made a joke of to the eyes of many?
To many fans and supporters especially those of us whom are Black, this was great to see. Since 2015, when we learned of John and his role of Finn…he has been the subject of profuse negativity and criticism that’s been little more than thinly veiled racism. He’s human like we all are. No amount of stardom and money keeps from feeling hurt or bothered.
So with his contractual obligations to Disney and Lucas Films done via the last film, he was finally able to poke back at his haters. Mind you, John took a very mild path in doing so. But the gravity of his videos isn’t lost on us Black folks. Going back to what I mentioned earlier, only we have the right to temper our conduct in response to what we’re experiencing. There is no harm in telling people to hop off your mentions, and if necessary, drag them. Of course, I realize this is easier said than done. A loud cishet Black man like myself faces less harassment compared to that of my queer, female, and non-binary peers.
Ultimately, the choice is yours and in no way should you feel bad. If you do and or face some kind of repercussion, it’s mostly because of the white gaze. Because I know my Black ass would think; oh that person could’ve left you alone. But when a choice is made, you do what you gotta do on Beyoncé’s internet.
So friends with 2020 here, be like John and go forth. You don’t have to take anything lying down because at the end of the day because you’re human. You don’t have to follow the majority’s rule book are they proceed to knock you down. Be like John, drop a video to dunk on haters and on the next day let’s know you’re enjoying your time on an island? Sure, they may call it petty. I would like to call it; new decade, new damn energy.