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Why "Outrage" Is NOT Allyship.

Updated: Jul 25, 2020

Like lust, outrage fades.

This slide 1 of a set of 5 explanations of what is/is not allyship created and posted by @holidayphillips. Below is part of excerpt of the conversation that took place in the Moms Against Racism Facebook group and my response.

I hope you don't mind my gentle challenge here. The sense in our family is that outrage is a part of allyship.

Comment from a MAR member:

I hope you don't mind my gentle challenge here. The sense in our family is that outrage is a part of allyship. ** not the fake outrage where you share traumatic events of black lives as some sort of shock or trauma news entertainment - I agree there is a slippery slope here ** But outrage is Anger, and anger is a core human emotional that forces us to face our core values and a catalyst for action. We should feel angry and sad and deeply disturbed by recent events. That is the only way we may truly challenge the white lens with which we see the world and be forced to stop and create a plan to become a true anti-racist.

The white washing of history was specifically designed to remove human emotion from history so we wouldn't address or make change. Outrage and Anger is a step in the anti racist process.

My response:

Hi Amanda!

I have been thinking about how to respond to your comment since you made it. I 100% agree with you about anger. It IS an honest core human emotion and if we listen to what it wants to teach us there is much wisdom in our anger. When we talk about intense anger we can describe it as as outrage or enrage. One is "out" one is "in".

Outrage is performative. Enrage is to be filled with rage.

To be outraged, in my opinion, has more focus on showing how angry you are. Kinda like all the people who share pictures of themselves at the gym to look the part, or how happy they are as a couple when really they aren't to seem like they are happy, or the people only talk about how much money they spent on something to appear rich and successful; it's for show in part to convince themselves of whatever it is they THINK they SHOULD be.

Enrage, on the other hand, is personal. It is deep. It is the fire that burns inside you whether or not someone else is there to see it.

I want people to be enraged. I want people to be motivated internally and not externally. I want that rage to stay with you until our institutions have been dismantled and BIPOC have racial equity and justice.

Like lust, outrage fades.

Be enraged.

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