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Listen to the ASMR version here.

Diversity is the palatable version of the ‘other.’

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Diversity is the language of the oppressor.

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Diversity dictates norm, standards, neutrality and objectivity all off which are oppressive concepts.

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Diversity is a word without a past, present or future. There is no temporality with diversity. It is an empty signifier; it means everything and nothing at the same time.

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Diversity racialises white people as individuals and People of Colour as a monolith.

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white people are diverse too.  

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Diversity is the palatable version of race.

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Diversity erases People of Colour of their uniqueness.

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Diversity is a useless descriptor. What exactly do you mean when you say you want more ‘diverse’ candidates? Who exactly are you referring to?

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Diversity exists without any context, location or nuance. This lack of specificity means diversity is ahistorical, it skips over our current present and fast forward towards an ambiguous future. white people don’t know how things became un-diverse; it is just how things came to be.

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Institutional conversations around diversity are often followed by responses that seek ‘thinking’, ‘reflection’ and actions which ‘take time.’ These positions are issue-avoidant, disingenuous and are a strategy to avoid any real systemic and institutional changes.

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Decolonising is not diversifying.

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Diversifying is not decolonising.

When I walk into most cultural and academic institutions, I survey how white your office is. My eyes bulge in disbelief because of how white the space is. I whimper with despair because of how white the space is.

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Diversity is the tool of whiteness.

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Your attempts at distracting us with reports, research, studies and commissions that investigate how un-diverse, how un-inclusive your organisation is; is a waste of time, money and resources that could have been spent on hiring a Black person or funding a Black organisation. You knew you were racists when you commissioned that report. Did you think we would be shocked about something we already knew? We have told you this for decades. We have done our own reports and research; but it took that white researcher and public funds to inform you 40% of London was missing in your department? It was the first thing I noticed!

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Diversity work often happens as part of a cyclical agenda, usually every 10 years. All of the previous work of yesteryear gets erased and forms part of a social amnesia. white people pretend this is all new information, they are shocked about the various inequality ‘gaps’ and ‘deficits’ launching another set of reports, research and schemes reiterating all too similar points of the last decade and the decade before that and the decade before that. This stop-start-strategy is a sophisticated form of racism. It enables whiteness to get away unchallenged with non-committal promises and tokenistic gestures, appearing active whilst completely passive.

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The purpose of diversity is to maintain whiteness and not to undo it.

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Your diversity strategy is shit.

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Your diversity strategy involves meaningless and empty gestures.  You should abandon it. NOW.

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How does your diversity strategy provide accountability for People of Colour?  Is your language urgent, specific, intellectually honest? Do you care about us? Do you see our humanity?

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Does your diversity strategy include the word racism? Does your diversity strategy include the word white supremacy?

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You are not an anti-racist, so stop saying that.

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You do not understand the meaning of intersectionality. So, stop using it.

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Whilst we are here, intersectional Feminism does not exist.

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Hiring a Person of Colour is not diversity work. Our mere presence will not undo centuries of systems, structures and practices that upholds whiteness. People of Colour are employed into sectors that were designed to exclude us and are hostile to our presence.

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Do you only hire People of Colour who are palatable, who make you feel comfortable, who upholds whiteness?

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Who is really missing from your organisation? You might have hired  (usually less than 5) People of Colour from the same ethnic/racial group. Does one group dominate over others and why? Where are the Black people? Have you ever employed a dark-skinned Black Women in a position of power before?

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Language constructs power and inequality. To ‘diversify’ your workforce means you have acknowledged how white your workforce is. To be ‘inclusive,’ means you have accepted which groups who have been excluded. Neither diversity nor inclusion touches the surface to dismantling whiteness.

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We need to call out whiteness. When we are not candid about whiteness, we uphold a lie.  We lie about who is absent and we lie about who is taking up space. In exposing whiteness, we make visible the invisible. We call to attention to how it exists as a covert system of power, masquerading as the norm and instrumenting language like standard, traditional or conventional to disguise and to refer to its existence.

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Diversity is a scam.

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