Los Angeles, CA–Performative activism is hindering African-Americans, non-Black POC’s and white allies from real coalition building in Los Angeles.
I am not referring to the hard working people who go to City Hall and speak during public comment, or real grassroots organizers and some white allies working hard in our communities to bridge the gap.
Performative Activism: Performance activism is essentially the act of supporting a cause, not necessarily because you are passionate about creating change, but because you want to garner attention and gain support or monetization from others due to your support.
As a Black journalist born and raised in the inner city of L.A, I am constantly trying to illustrate how journalism platforms continue to exploit Black communities and our trauma for views and notoriety.
LATACO and Knock L.A both try to hide from the conflict created by their disdain for Black voices they view as threatening.
In 2020, L.A Taco and Cerise Castle of Knock L.A attempted to assassinate my character and demonize me. This is nothing but a form of violence against Black bodies in digital spaces, and bullying journalists independent of their networks.
These same platforms are some of the loudest on police brutality and L.A politics, while they attempt to portray themselves as some faux social justice warriors.
LATACO and Knock L.A are similar. They are founded by white-folks, who prop up Black people who are more easier for them to tolerate, so they don’t appear anti-Black.
It is important to note that Cerise Castle is a Black girl who reached out to LATACO, to try and stop an Editor-in-Chief collaboration and proceeded to launch a smear campaign on Twitter against me, to her mostly non-Black following.
All this over a IG story about Nick Cannon, with a Black female I have never met a day before in my life.
I would never reach out where someone was about to do a collaboration, to stop their income, let alone another Black or “person of color” during covid and a global pandemic.
Just like the five officers who beat Tyre Nichols to death, we see how Black people become complicit in white supremacy against other Black people, subsequently upholding the system.
L.A Taco is run by Latino folks and founded by white men but my entry point and willingness to even write for the platform, was because I thought I was supporting L.A’s Latino community.
As a native of L.A and a Black Journalist who has worked overtime to try and promote a sense of solidarity between Black and Brown communities (when I did not have to) I feel completely played.
Where is that solidarity when Black people need support?
There can be no real solidarity between non-Black POC groups, African-Americans and white allies, if folks are unwilling to engage in uncomfortable conversations to reach a sense of understanding.
Many non-Black POC’s are complicit in the policing of Black bodies largely practiced by whites throughout history.
They especially love to try and police Black thought, without any consideration to understand our differing view points.
This is anti-Black behavior.
In addition to the performative activism being portrayed by smaller media outlets in Los Angeles, there is an intense level of virtue signaling by the white audiences they serve.
Virtue Signaling: The public expression of opinions or sentiments intended to demonstrate one’s good character or social conscience or the moral correctness of one’s position on a particular issue.
Many of these “activists” and journalists in L.A are some of the most intolerable when it comes to Black freedom of expression. They love to gaslight you over your opinions and go out to a BLM protest the next day.
They go through extreme lengths to try and belittle you professionally and downplay your achievements, then clutch their pearls when you give them that same energy in return.
Your perspective on life is based on your lived experiences, so it is a bit wild that non-Black anarchists and some POC groups in Los Angeles, believe my thought process as a Black woman should completely match theirs.
Especially, considering much of my lived experience has been based on survival as a marginalized Black woman in America.
If my life went the path this city has set for undesirable Black women and people in Los Angeles, you would have never heard from me and that’s what really upsets folks. I have the right to express myself, especially in the city that I was born, raised and traumatized in.
Dear L.A: Stop being triggered over Black political thought that makes you uncomfortable or does not fit your narratives.
Note: Cerise Castle would subsequently lose her job at NPR during covid, following her launching a smear campaign against me and now works at a platform similar to LATACO, KNOCK LA. This was after she went online pleading and crying about being fired and “racist” treatment at NPR. This was the same job she tried to use as leverage in her 2020 smear campaign against me, as an independent journalist and media entrepreneur in L.A.