It’s horrendous to say… But I think a lot of the reason that the BLM protests over summer gained so many White, middle-class allies around the world had more to do with those White people being unused to having restrictions placed on their freedoms, such as those we all endured under the initial lockdown phases. Being told to self-isolate and social distance for months on end, then suddenly having a morally valid reason to get out on the streets? I think it was an all too convenient excuse for a lot of people.

The same could be said for content creators, the usual content of travel, restaurants and general middle-class living it large dried up, so they tried on anti-racism for size and realised it fit. Likes shot up, it got them through the lockdown. It was self serving and unsustainable.

Perhaps this is a bit of a Eurocentic perspective, but the conversation seems to have dried up. As someone who has been writing and talking about racism for several years now, with all the uncomfortable conversations that entails, it’s really not surprising. I’m just sorry to have not been proven wrong.

China specialist, feminist, political scientist in progress. Reviews, socialism & everyday academia. Low-brow, no jargon/acronyms. Editor of The Open Bookshelf.

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