My badass professor Dr. Zwissler
We were talking about Slutwalks, when she dropped that truth bomb. “Don’t get my wrong, I want to dance at the revolution, but I don’t want my oppressors dancing with me”.
so much truth.
my closest friends always tell me that I have an aggressive personality — that I don’t take shit from anyone, ever — and that this is what both isolates me and makes me memorable. making people uncomfortable is political. I have no regrets.
I’d hope there’s room for us who don’t have the emotional wherewithal to alienate friends and family right now.
I don’t know about anyone else, but the last thing I need these days is to drive people away because I made them uncomfortable with politics. I need emotional support, I need friends.
I also happen to have that specific insecurity where I’m constantly terrified that I’m this close to losing even my most intimate friends over one small thing.
Like… a disagreement over politics.
The last thing I need right now is feeling like a bunch of people are saying I’m a bad activist because I have different priorities. The last thing I need is the suggestion that anything short of aggressive action is inadequate.
I’m emotionally fragile, anticipating the death of a grandmother, stressed over work, and I’m supposed to be perfectly content making people I love profoundly uncomfortable all the time?
(I’m not saying aggressive activism is bad. I’m saying it’s bad for me, especially right now. I’d hope we can have a variety of approaches to activism be considered valid.)
So like, what would you like your oppressor to be doing at the revolution instead of dancing with you? Suffering to some degree? Lamenting their loss? Not there at all?
I’d rather have a reformed oppressor who’s joining the celebration.
I feel like this post is saying “if your oppressor is comfortable, you’re not doing activism right.” If you follow the idea that learning is usually uncomfortable, and challenging old ideas is uncomfortable, and those two things are necessary for your oppressor to reform, then sure, they’ll probably be uncomfortable. During safe space agreements, we’d talk about leaning into discomfort because it often means you’re learning.
But at the end of the day, when the revolution is happening, I hope my oppressor is right there with me, dancing away.