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Confluence Daily is your daily news source for women in the know
By: Lisa M. Hayes
An open letter to my fellow white sisters:
(Buckle up. This is a lot, and I am in a mood.)
The fight for our rights and freedom is not going to be convenient.
The revolution is not going to be comfortable.
We have to decide right now if we want to be free.
As white women, we have been conditioned to believe comfort and safety are the same. We have been socialized to think our comfort was worth fighting for, no matter who had to pay for it.
White women are born soft, entitled, and numb because generations of us have been cushioned from the effects of oppression even though we ARE oppressed.
Our society has traditionally conditioned us to believe our comfort is a high priority. Our lives are built around that softness. The addiction to doing what is convenient so we can be comfortable has led us right here, to this moment. A few people in power have confidently wagered our freedom against our comfort and believe we will ultimately choose comfort and convenience over freedom and security.
So far, they have not been wrong.
HISTORICALLY, WHITE WOMEN CAN NOT BE TRUSTED TO DO HARD THINGS FOR THE GREATER GOOD.
We have literally and figurately banked on the privilege of the men who behave as if they own us. For the most part, that has worked for us – at the expense of other women.
Sitting out the 4th of July because you think your independence has been infringed on and thinking it will make some kind of bold statement is white-washed privileged nonsense. Assuming you can hold back a few dollars for a few days and get your rights to reproductive healthcare back is the equivalent of thinking not having dinner on Thursday once a month will solve world hunger.
Our delusional beliefs that we are both individually powerful because we have perceived social immunity and simultaneously powerless because we do not know how to stand together make us currency for the patriarchy. We lost Roe v. Wade and everything that will follow because we have left other groups of women alone to fight for their freedoms, reproductive and otherwise, while we were comfortably sitting out the hard work it takes to dismantle the patriarchy.
The very phrase “dismantle the patriarchy” is on the brink of becoming nothing more than a marketing slogan. If we do not act now, with resolve, discipline, and long-term commitment, we will be leaving that for our daughters and granddaughters to do. We will be reduced to a legacy of being the ancestors that left them holding a shit show because we could not be bothered to shop at Lowes instead of Home Depot because Home Depot was half a mile closer.
White women are not victims here. We are on the hook for all of it. Our general apathy and dependence on privilege led us to believe stopping the rise of fascism was not our problem. Women will die because of what we have not done. Other critical human rights are on the block because we couldn’t be bothered.
We either rise or do not –
but seriously, if we aren’t going to rise now, it might be too late tomorrow.
Start here – but start knowing NONE of this will change anything tomorrow or next year, but maybe we can save our daughters and granddaughters.
1. If there is another candidate to choose from, NEVER VOTE FOR A WHITE MAN AGAIN – for the rest of your whole damn voting life. Think at least twice before voting for a white woman. If there is an option, vote for someone who does not look like you. Diversity is our only long-term cure. Do it consistently. Do not make excuses to vote for your neighbor Karen because your kids go to school together. Karen cannot save us now.
2. Do not hand your money to white men when you shop – ever again unless there is absolutely no choice – and there is almost always a choice. Money is power. We can’t keep giving it to men and wonder why we feel powerless. Shop local. Do some research. Make some fucking effort to empower people with your money who will not use it to do harm. It will not be convenient, but it is necessary.
3. Do not have sex with men outside of committed long-term relationships or unless you want to get pregnant. Penises are generally over-rated. Your body is worth more than what most men have to offer – especially when prosecution and incarceration are at risk. It is NOT a moral issue. It is a freedom issue. Hook-up culture is dead. I do not say this lightly: Buy a better vibrator or find yourself a good woman.
4. Look to the BIPOC community for social and community leadership. – we do not need to be in charge, nor do we need to start re-working work other women have been doing for a long time. Control all of your white savior impulses. Avoid giving in to the caucasian I have a dream to lead and fix. You do not need to start the modern-day underground abortion network. You aren’t qualified for that. If you haven’t already been leading the work for years, you are not qualified not to do anything but write checks and take orders from women who have – most of whom are going to be women of color.
5. Make a damn plan to navigate your reproductive health. Plan as if you don’t have insurance or any autonomous rights over your body, no matter your state. Get the pills in the mail even if you don’t think you need them. Make a SECURE plan to get out of state or out of the country for health care, even if you don’t think you need to. Just do all the things you don’t believe you need to do and do them quickly. An all-out aggressive and violent war on women will spread faster than we can possibly imagine. This is not just a crisis for other women. Start adapting to survival behaviors the way WOC have had to live for years. White women are not invincible anymore.
6. For the love of Goddess and all things holy, DO NOT TAKE HERBAL ABORTION ADVICE FROM A DAMN TIKTOK PERSON YOU DO NOT KNOW. Get to know your local trusted wise woman herbalists, midwives, and Doulas. They have been training for this longer than many of us have been alive.
7. On the topic of getting to know people: Most white women do not know their neighbors, let alone the women across town. My dear white sister, we will have to learn to live in and contribute to the community. You can no longer depend on damn Facebook as your primary connection to community. Bake some cookies, and take them to people you do not know – bonus points if the people you give to do not fit your social demographic. Talk to other women in real life. Figure out where your allies are. Create an old-fashioned phone tree for emergencies. Build a real human network of women. Chances are very high; you will need them. The internet is not the friend it used to be.
8. If you go to a rally or protest, remind yourself you are doing that to support other women and be in a like-minded community. Do not delude yourself into thinking that going to a protest means doing your part, and then you’re done. The largest protests in human history have happened in the last few years. Protest alone creates temporary community, but IS NOT creating social change. We have to change how we live and start being different women for fucking ever, not for a weekend. Oh yeah, and when you attend that protest or rally to spend time with a few thousand of your new favorite friends, remember, you are not in charge.
9. Get ready to part with your money. Because we failed to prevent this, even though we could have, it will be a decades-long, even generations-long, process of clawing our way back to where we started. Your one-time righteous rage donation is functionally both useful and meaningless for the long haul. Start setting up subscription payments and plan on prioritizing them over Starbucks and Amazon in your caucasian budget. Consider those subscription payments to organizations doing work you aren’t qualified to do the damn bare minimum, and remind yourself minimum commitment is what got us here.
10. Remember, racism and misogyny are two sides of the same coin. End your relationships with people you wouldn’t take to lunch with friends for fear of what shit they might say. You know who the bigots and misogynists in your life are. We are not pretending anymore. Stop making accommodations or excuses for people who passively or actively will not protect your rights or humanity. EVEN MORE SO for those who will passively or actively work to undermind your rights or humanity. Holding them in relationship also holds space for their views; at this point, those views are more than just a difference of opinion. They are fodder for fascism. You cannot enable that any longer by pretending it does no matter or our of an over-abundance of appropriateness. They have come for us. Those people are not your friends; as an adult, you can always choose your family.
None of it is going to be easy.
Fascism sucks worse.
Confluence Daily is the one place where everything comes together. The one-stop for daily news for women.
Lisa is an LOA Relationship Coach. She helps clients leverage Law of Attraction to get the relationships they dream about and build the lives they want. Lisa is also the founder of The Coaching Guild where the world’s best coaches are trained.