We’ve all seen and reacted to them. A “Black” person’s social media account will start some trouble by sharing something that will cause dissension between Blacks online and maybe spilling into the real world. A great example of this is the Black Panther movie. Supposedly since one of the stars, Michael B. Jordan, was reportedly only into non-Black women, a group of Black women wanted to boycott the movie. It turned out to be a troll account but it speaks to a bigger issue. There are many white nationalists who try to disrupt the Black community via social media.
Recently someone shared on one of the social media sites I’m on that an Alt-Right site posted suggestions on how their members could sow strife by imitating Black styles of writing on social media. They were instructed to use certain icons and certain words. Honestly it can probably work to some extent. Even without the Alt-Right there are many trolls of all races including Blacks who want to stir up trouble because quite frankly that’s what they do. We know it’s going to happen so what can we do?
The first thing is question any negative posts and think in terms of what may happen if someone were to follow through with any suggestions. Let’s take the Black Panther incident for example. Black Panther was the highest grossing Black film ever. The movie not only made money but showed Blacks in an extremely positive light with a diversity of personality types and philosophical questions. Many whites saw before the film premiered that any positive images of Blacks could be problematic to their own agendas. So the thought was, “let’s sabotage this.” Much in the same way Nate Parker’s “Birth of a Nation” was sabotaged. It didn’t work in the case of Black Panther but they still tried.
Whenever someone sees a negative post on social media pertaining to Blacks the first thing a thinking person needs to do is question both the motivation and think in terms of the consequences. Always ask why. If there is a potential negative consequence we have to use that same social media to call out the agenda. We also need to recognize fake accounts. These types of accounts will either use the picture of a random Black person that could have been pulled off of Google images or a picture of something that is stereotypically Black. Some of slicker ones may use a Black Nationalist icon. If necessary check the home page of anyone spreading negative propaganda under the guise of being Black. These white trolls do have a very big weakness that can expose them as well. They typically only have a superficial view of Black culture.
As anyone in the Black community knows there’s a big difference between what Blacks may say and do online where anyone can see our thoughts and what we say and do in private away from white eyes. It’s been that way since we were brought to these shores. Black people learn from an early age how to wear masks around whites. We code switch all the time.
Someone with a fake Black account doesn’t know the codes. Very few white nationalist types have spent time around Blacks in more closed settings. There’s always going to be something off about any postings by whites masquerading as Blacks. In addition, as I pointed out earlier what Blacks say and do behind closed doors is hidden from most whites.
The takeaway for all of this is always question any post online. Quite frankly do the same thing with posts for people you know to be Black. Accept nothing at face value. Social media has many good points. There are also some weaknesses that can be exploited by people with negative intent. Always be vigilant.
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