Decenter whiteness

For some of us, it has been a frustrating week, and I am tremendously grateful to those who sought and developed community these past few days, cautiooning against celebration and rest. For many, Biden's victory has relieved an anxiety present since Trump's inauguration.

But - and I know I am repeating a refrain - those fears existed before Trump. What changed was that Trump marred the petina covering the kyirarchy in a brilliant neoliberal verdigris, and even those not directly harmed by its violence had to reckon with it in ways new to them.

While people of color were empirically the reason Biden won, and while many might currently be calling for that to be recognized, I don't believe our social institutions have ways to center the views of those peoples, even in a limited scope… without assimilation.

Centuries of intentional distancing will not be easy for wašíčula to remedy, and it is the responsibility of those within our kyriarchal society to find the remedy.

No other way of living can be centered, until whiteness is decentered. Any attempt at "centering" marginalized voices before making space is, conscious or not, an attempt to incorporate them into the existing system.

This is reflected in the language of some "allies," who ask their peers to "make room at the table." What the "table" is remains unquestioned, as though meeting around it is immutable.

This naturally excludes a great number of voices. There are many people who cannot approach the table, for many sitting at it would harm them if they're able. Others choose not to approach it. Some are scared of what it would do to them, others simply think it has nothing to offer them.

And a fair few would rather see the table chopped apart, and everyone at it given a stern talking-to.

As long as the future is seen as "progressing" when everyone has a seat at the table, and "regressing" when fewer people do, we limit our society's capabilities to whatever the table is capable of.

Which is long enough to rely on a metaphor without defining it. What is "the table?" I'll address that in one of my next letters.

P.S. I've set up my Itch profile to serve information I publish - right now there's two little short stories on there, and the script I used to generate their HTML renderings. I'd earlier talked about using Ko-fi for such things; I think Itch is better suited to it, though I'll continue to use Ko-fi for accepting financial donations and, soon, offering physical goods.