intersectional & identity gps for dummies
i think intersectionality is confusing for a lot of people and so i would like to share with you some stuff about it so you don't feel lost when you hear it in conversations. i like to explain to people that intersectionality is like your gps location on your identity map. for instance here is my gps:
cis-gendered woman. fat. lgbtqa. white. feminist. socialist. environmentalist.
those are all my cross-streets. those are all the pin point locations of identity and how i move throughout the world. and how others see and interact with me. some i was born with. some i have acquired. some have been learned. but they all make up who i am, what i am all about, and what i care about. all are important parts of me. some bring me privilege. some bring me discrimination. some are why i wake up every morning determined to fight the good fight and cause more good trouble.
understanding intersectionality is vital. it helps us identify our people, the ones we want to build relationships with, community from, and frankly, who the hell to stay away from. being able to peel apart the layers of who we are as humans, allows for deeper connections, better understanding, and less harm, even unintended harm.
i see a lot of troubling behaviors, especially in areas that tend to be dominated by white women, ie: feminism & environmentalism. i also see it a ton in the whole "boss babe" corner of social media. y'all can stop using tribe and spirit animal now. it's not cute. i believe in empowering women but not at the cost of marginalized women. see how that works? let's do better.
so. in respect to intersectional identity and a commitment to being the best human i can be, i will remember my identity gps, the privilege it brings me balanced with the discrimination it also brings me, and try to remember that there are others who are far worse off than i could ever imagine.
be kind to one another. read a book on this topic. be better for others.
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