October 6, 2012
From “It Takes a Lot to Laugh”

This should go without saying, but I’ll say it anyway: no one deserves to be hurt by racism. This seems like an easy statement to abide by, until you realize that racism is not always intentional, and it’s not always obvious, and sometimes people don’t agree what constitutes racism or even acknowledge that it exists. And for those reasons, sometimes, it sucks to talk about it, it sucks to think about it, and it sucks to have to deal with it at all. But if you are a person of color, chances are, at some point you are gonna have to deal with it, and for me, when I was first confronted with it, I went from feeling hurt to feeling active self-loathing to feeling full-on apeshit angry. All of it sucked.

Let me just say that it’s totally OK to be apeshit angry. Don’t let anyone ever shame you for feeling bad about racism or put you down or make you feel like you are overreacting. THERE IS NO WAY TO OVERREACT TO RACISM, BECAUSE RACISM IS A SYSTEMATIC DEVALUATION AND DEHUMANIZATION OF ENTIRE GROUPS OF PEOPLE. I repeat: RACISM IS A SYSTEMTIC DEVALUATION AND DEHUMANIZATION OF ENTIRE GROUPS OF PEOPLE, AND NOT REACTING TO IT ONLY HELPS PERPETUATE IT.

Jenny Zhang for Rookie