— TheGailyGrind (@thegailygrind) July 5, 2016
This is neither smart nor appropriate activism. I understand anger at injustice. I’ve been on the receiving end of “tone policing” since the moment I first spoke up decades ago. Even members of oppressed groups often dislike anyone rocking the boat, but rocking the boat is sometimes necessary. On the other hand, I’ve also gotten the “It’s your turn to listen” aggression from people who neither know nor care that decades of listening and working in coalitions are reflected in my advocacy and writing. I will not be intimidated by or pander to ignorant and presumptuous people just because they make false assumptions and accusations about me. Reciprocity and mutual respect are key to productive alliances. Treating all white people or all police or all corporations as clueless or as irredeemable adversaries is poisonous. And it is not true. Our diversity includes diversity of opinion. You have to make your case, not just issue demands. One demand from the Toronto BLM activists was to exclude police floats or booths from future pride events. If you tried that in DC, where we are proud of our LGBT Liaison Unit, you would have a huge battle on your hands. Respect must be given to be received, and cannot be based on blackmail.