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Ally Resources For Supporters Of Black Lives Matter

9 Min Read
Politics

If you aren't able to be out protesting, there are still tons of ways you can support the current movement for racial justice at home. Here is a list of resources, organizations to donate to, petitions to sign, and a number of other actions you can take from home to help support Black Lives Matter as an ally.

What You Can Do From Home

Speak Out

Whether it is on social media or via face-to-face conversations with family members or friends, it's important to have these difficult conversations. The fact that it is an option for you to have conversations about racism, is in itself a privilege. Black people don't get to pretend these issues don't exist — doing so could cost them their lives or their children's lives. Particularly for white people, as you begin educating yourself and others on privilege, this experience will often bring up feelings of shame and guilt, which may cause you to want to quiet down and stop talking about these crucial issues.

Maybe you're afraid you'll say something wrong. Maybe you're afraid you'll upset someone. Maybe you're afraid someone might think you're racist if you mess up. All of those feelings are valid, it's something most white people will go through, but it's your responsibility to push through them. This is the crucial difference between being "not racist" and being anti-racist.

Spreading awareness, as well as using these conversations as an opportunity to promote Black voices and Black stories, is an incredible use of your platform and your privilege. Be prepared for not everyone to agree with you; stay calm and focus on seeking to educate, as well as preparing to be educated yourself by those who may know more. Please remember that an important piece of speaking out is being prepared to recognize that you made a mistake. We are all seeking to do the best we can with the information at hand, but you can take measures to make sure that information is as correct and supportive as it can be by educating yourself.

Educate Yourself

There is no shame in admitting when you don't know something or learning something new. This is a movement that requires continuous education and learning from each other. Racism is ingrained into every aspect of our lives, the government, our policing systems, even ourselves. Check out a more comprehensive list of reading and other media that can help you in your journey to educate yourself below, but don't underestimate the power of a conversation with others.

However, please be aware: the job of the Black community right now is not to educate you or walk you through their experience. Make sure that you are taking the responsibility of educating yourself, and remember to say "thank you" rather than "I'm sorry" when someone takes the time to correct you. An apology makes the person feel that they have to say, "It's okay" when your mistake is not just okay, however a "thank you" recognizes their work and their effort in reaching out and pointing you on the right path.

However, please be aware: the job of the Black community right now is not to educate you or walk you through their experience. Make sure that you are taking the responsibility of educating yourself, and remember to say "thank you" rather than "I'm sorry" when someone takes the time to correct you.

There are plenty of texts, books, documentaries, articles that Black people have put their thought, effort, and voices behind that can help you educate yourself. You cannot expect them to offer you this information and their time for free. But you can find your answers and support these hard-working creators by subscribing to, reading, and buying their work.

Donate

We want to recognize that protesting in the midst of a global pandemic is a dangerous but necessary cause. For all the hundreds of thousands of people who have been impacted by COVID-19 across the past few months, every Black person in our nation and in our history has been impacted by the systemic racism run rampant in our country. Protests are not a matter of convenience. We urge everyone who cannot be out there on the streets to donate financially to these movements to help support and uplift the efforts of these brave protestors. Financial contributions make a huge difference in the tangible change that can be enacted; every dollar counts. Utilize your networks and your platforms to encourage and inspire others to donate as well. It is not your place to assume whether or not someone else has the means to donate and is much more productive to consider your own position and what you can do with your dollar.

In this time of political upheaval unemployment is higher than it's ever been within our generation, if you do not have the means to donate you can still sign petitions, uplift Black stories, call your represenatives and take dozens of other critical actions to help tear down this unjust system. You may not be able to do it all, but you can at least do something. Below you'll find various list of recommended readings, petitions, organizations to donate to, and more. This is by no means an exhaustive list. In fact, we've included a list of other relevant resources list at the bottom of ours. However, as a media publication, we have a responsibility to use our platform to support this movement for racial justice, and we do not take that lightly.

Petitions To Sign

Watch These Videos

Listen To These Podcasts

  • #TellBlackStories
  • Code Switch
  • About Race
  • Seeing White
  • Momentum: A Race Forward Podcast
  • The Diversity Gap
  • Intersectionality Matters! Hosted by Kimberle Crenshaw
  • The Stoop
  • Still Processing

Follow and Support Black Organizations and Influencers

  • @colorofchange
  • @blklivesmatter
  • @theconsciouskid
  • @ncaap
  • @showupingupforracialjustice
  • @sistersong_woc
  • @fams2gether
  • @unitedwedream
  • @mpowerchange
  • @civilrightsorg
  • Black influencers to Follow –– list created by @roohiamber

Text or Call These Numbers

  • Text JUSTICE to 668366
  • Text ENOUGH to 55156
  • Leave a message for these numbers demanding that Derek Chauvin (Badge #1087) and Tou Thao (Badge #7162) are arrested for murder:
  • Minneapolis Mayor, Jacob Frey: (612) 673 2100
  • District Attorney, Mita Freeman: (612) 673 3074
  • Call Louisville Mayor at (502) 574 2003 to demand justice for Breonna Taylor

Register To Vote

Find out how to register in your state here.

Check-in On Your Black Friends, Family, and Peers

But read this first.

Organizations To Donate To

Local Bail Funds To Donate To (@yusufyuie on Instagram)

Recommended Reading/Watching For Allies

Articles

Books

If you are interested in purchasing these books, we recommend you avoid using Amazon or other online retailers that are known to price-gouge during times of increased demand. Rather, use this time of education to also support a Black-owned book story. Here are two lists outlining multiple Black-owned bookstores that often have online purchasing options: African American Literature Book Club's List & AfroTech's List. Is it easier to just hop onto Amazon and click two buttons, yes? Does Amazon need your support right now? Definitely not.

  • So You Want To Talk About Race by Ijeoma Olou
  • Why Are All the Black Kids Sitting Together in the Cafeteria?: And Other Conversations About Race by Beverly Daniel Tatum
  • Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston
  • Between the World and Me by Ta-Nehisi Coates
  • They Can't Kill Us All: Ferguson, Baltimore, and a New Era in America's Racial Justice Movement by Welsey Lowery
  • White Rage: The Unspoken Truth of Our Racial Divide by Carol Anderson
  • How to Be an Antiracist by Ibram X. Kendi
  • Black Stats: African Americans by the Numbers in the Twenty-First Century by Monique W. Morris
  • Choke Hold: Policing Black Me by Paul Butler
  • Eloquent Rage: A Black Feminist Discovers Her Superpower by Brittney Cooper
  • Black Feminist Thought by Patricia Hill Collins
  • Holistic Wealth: 32 Life Lessons to Help You Find Purpose, Prosperity, and Happiness by Keisha Blair
  • Beloved by Toni Morrrison

Documentaries, Films, And Shows

  • Race - The Power of An Illusion (PBS three-part series)
  • When They See Us (four-part series)
  • 13th (documentary)
  • Freedom Riders (documentary)
  • Whose Streets? (documentary)
  • Strong Island (documentary)
  • LA 92 (documentary)
  • The Hate U Give (Hulu film and book by Angie Thomas)
  • In Black America (podcast)
  • Just Mercy (Amazon Prime)
  • The Skin We're In (CBC)
  • Dear White People (Netflix)
  • Black-ish (ABC)
  • If Beale Street Could Talk (Hulu)
  • Selma (Amazon Prime)

Additional Resources Lists

Our above resources list is by no means exhaustive, there will always be more to read, learn, and listen to. We've done our best to point our SWAAY audience in the right direction, but this is not an issue that stops at the end of a list. Many mainstream media sources are not sharing information like this at the rate it must be shared. We recommend some of the following lists if you are looking for more or different information. Additionally, social media has been an incredible resource during this time of crisis and we recommend you use those platforms wisely. In an era where certain media outlets protect the status quo over Black lives, social media has become the de facto voice of the people — use it wisely.

In addition to sharing these resources, SWAAY is doing everything we can do to help uplift Black voices and support the current movement for racial justice. As such, we're offering free membership services to all members of the Black community as a means of amplifying their expriences. Click the image below to submit your story! Additionally, we're focusing on sharing primarily Black voices on our homepage and have featured all of our contirbutions from Black voices in a new section to help highlight their current and prior contributions to SWAAY.

3 Min Read
Career

Black LGBTQ Woman Powerhouse Launches Vegan Cosmetics Line

I am a proud Black business owner carrying a line of lip colors for the woman who wants to shine. At Vatarie Cosmetics you can find cruelty-free and vegan lip care products, including clear lip gloss and liquid matte lipsticks. The line is still under development, so there are more products in the making that you'll hear more about soon!

My products are high-quality and it is my dream to take my brand into high-end storefronts across the nation and even across the globe.

About Leticia

I have worked my way into my entrepreneurial career as I did not come from money. The goal of my cosmetic line is to bring excitement to everyone who tries the line. My products are high-quality and it is my dream to take my brand into high-end storefronts across the nation and even across the globe. I believe that with added makeup and a good set of threads, anybody can confidently face the world. I am a proud and firm supporter of the Black Lives Matter (BLM) movement and a proud member and supporter of the LGBTQIA community.

There have been plenty of hardships that I have had to face throughout my entire life, the most recent being the recent death of my father who passed far too soon. I have never allowed these hardships to deter me, and won't start now. I will continue to progress and work hard to build my business, knowing that this is what my father would have wanted.

About the Vatarie Line: What It's All About

Upon launching the line, I had the mission of inspiring every human to find their inner beauty and to have fun along the way. With this in mind, my products are designed for people of all genders, races, religions, and creeds. The Vatarie line will have more to offer customers very soon as I am continually working on developing products and expanding the line. In addition to the lip colors currently offered, the line will soon include highlighters, eyeshadows, and new lip gloss additions.

I believe that no one needs makeup to validate themselves, and we are all beautiful on our own. I do believe, though, that makeup can make life a lot more fun. Now more than ever we are living in a world where there is so much sadness and darkness. Sometimes all we need to change our moods and get away from that darkness is something to help us feel better and more vibrant — this is where a pop of makeup and a well put together outfit can really make an impact.

Now more than ever we are living in a world where there is so much sadness and darkness.

I encourage everybody to embrace their inner beauty and inner style, and express themselves no matter what. My line of products is inspired by high fashion and designed to make a bold statement. The running theme across my products is empowerment at every stage and level. I create products that make my customers feel happy, and I ensure I am happy myself with my products before I release every single one. There is no place for cutting corners as I believe in producing the highest quality product.

I bring my sense of humor and quirky personality into my products and you can see this in the names of each item. Take the lip color "Blood Money," which signifies all the money, tears, sweat, and yes, blood that was put into the brand. Let me tell you, it was hard work, and it still is hard work, but at the end of the day, it fulfills me to know the type of quality I am providing. It gives me great pride to create a line of legendary products that will positively affect someone and bring them to a place of self-love and acceptance.

About the Past that Gives My Business Meaning

I have struggled over the years with mental abuse that has left me feeling as if "I wasn't enough." Added to that, being a Black woman in an industry that is predominantly dominated by other races, I had to work harder to get to where I am today.

Coming from a broken home, my family struggled with addiction, making my entire childhood a miserable nightmare. My mother abandoned us as she was being physically abused, and it was up to us the kids to do everything necessary to take care of the home and each other. We eventually ended up living with my grandmother in Miami, Florida. At a very young age, I had to endure physical and mental abuse and was locked up. At the age of 22, I lost my younger sister to gun violence and found myself raising her one-year-old son as my own.

Being a Black woman in an industry that is predominantly dominated by other races, I had to work harder to get to where I am today.

While my past was a rough one, it is what has made me the strong, independent, and vibrant woman I am today. That woman strives to be her best every day and works tirelessly to provide a line of only the best cosmetics products. I couldn't see this while I was living through those bad situations and struggling to grow up, but I can look back and see how I was made more resilient because of my hardships.

As I grieve over my father's recent passing, I become stronger. It is this added personal strength that will push me forward in everything I do and will be reflected in my work ethic and in the development of new products for my Vatarie line of cosmetics.