Martin Luther King, Jr., Harriet Tubman, George Washington Carver, Viola Desmond. These are the names that come to mind when February 1 comes around and we are suddenly thrust into Black History Month. And while looking back at history is such an important part of this month, we must also look forward. As an ally, you should be asking yourself, “What are some things I can do for the Black community right now?” We mean tangible and long term aid.
Luckily for white people, we have performed some labor for you and have compiled a list of ways that you can uplift the Black community not only this month, but every month.
Call Yourself In
You should stop relying on Black people to educate you. We do not exist to make you feel comfortable. Before even looking at either of us, you must call yourself in. Confused? Maybe try decolonizing your mind.
Hold Space for Black Voices
This is a time of year for listening, not speaking. If you are a white person, ask yourself, “Do I need to contribute to this conversation, or should I let Sarah and Olivia take the reins?” After some reflection, we are sure that you will realize that you should just listen to us specifically.
Take a Black Woman to Dinner and Pay the Bill
This is such an easy way to show your allyship! Take a Black person you know (maybe Olivia or Sarah?) to a fabulous meal. We’re talking apps, cocktails, entrees, and dessert. No expense can be spared in the name of Black History Month.
Clean a Black Person’s House (Specifically Sarah’s and Olivia’s)
Reparations this, reparations that. You know what would actually do something for Black people? Deep cleaning the homes of both Sarah and Olivia. Sarah lives in Toronto and Olivia lives in New York. Figure it out.
Let Us Not Respond to Your Emails
There are just too many emails. We cannot be burdened with the emotional labor of responding this month. If you are trying to contact Sarah or Olivia, please do so in March.
Send Sarah and Olivia Money Directly
The income gap between Black women and everyone else is probably really crazy. Do we need a source? I don’t think so — again, we are not here to educate you. But we do need more money. Email firstname.lastname@example.org for direct deposit information.
Expand the Ma Universe
Give the girls what they want. We need another Ma movie.
But Also Keep Tate Taylor Away from Black People
Director Tate Taylor is just one of the visionaries behind Ma, but also his whole thing with Black people is kind of weird. The new Ma should be directed by a Black woman — perhaps Ava DuVernay or Dee Rees — but have the exact same sensibility as the first one.
Buy Sarah and Olivia a Cameo from Someone Fun ($100 or more)
We would like a fun little video from someone we actually give a shit about, and we want you to spend real money on it. Do not send us someone that only costs $45 and/or was a cast member of The Office. Gina Torres is available for $145 — that is the kind of person and price point we are talking about.
Give Sarah and Olivia an Award (A REAL ONE)
No honorary bullshit — a real award that exists. Something from an academy or Forbes. We deserve it, as Black women.