there is a big difference between “making space for others” and “lazy rationalisation of your unwillingness to engage”.
a boycott is not a movement. inaction is a form of action in that it impacts the world but it is not a substitute for positive action. refusal to learn about other cultures than your own on the grounds of wariness of cultural appropriation is lazy. not saying anything when your friends are getting harassed is not respecting their strength and autonomy, it is weak as shit. only eating out or shopping or living in already-gentrified communities is not fighting gentrification. not going to solidarity events you’ve been invited to attend because you’re wary of taking up space is paternalistic. not participating in solidarity movements because you’re afraid of saying the wrong thing and offending someone is the rankest exercise of the privilege of comfort. being more concerned with not fucking up than with doing good is about your personal purity, not about the effect you have on the world, and very few people have the resources to maintain this illusion of purity for themselves. I hear so many rationalisations for staying within your comfort zone under the guise of “solidarity” and I have to say that they all strike me as utterly self-indulgent and self-deceiving. push yourself or don’t, but don’t try and recast your every action or inaction as anti-oppressive.
OBVIOUSLY this isn’t all true 100% of the time, every time. But whoa.
well, i guess someone can see right through me…