It’s sad and frustrating to see what is going on in the US, but it’s even more disappointing and painful to see the reaction of organizations and people in positions of privilege, that despite having very good intentions and good hearts, keep making the same mistakes out of ignorance.
For example, I’ve observed over the years the strategy of creating dedicated groups to support the marginalized communities, e.g. Latinas in Tech, Black Coders, Harvard Latinx, etc etc etc. And although it’s a start, it’s definitely not addressing the core challenges.
As a Latina, I don’t want to be part of Latinas in tech, I just want to be in tech, we don’t need to be in [Insert anything] LatinX, we just want to be part of the main thing, period. We wouldn’t need these groups if the system was fair and inclusive.
People don’t need Instagram blackouts. People just want to be treated with respect, have the same opportunities, and feel safe. It’s about reform, not a one-day event.
I see a lot of VCs and corporations making statements about how they’re going to launch a fund to support the cause or donate to some charity. They are just delegating the responsibility, not being part of the solution.
Hire more minorities, invest in more founders from minorities, educate yourselves, pay equal salaries, create change from within. Be fair. To reiterate, I understand many people have good intentions behind their words and actions but good intentions need to be aligned to concrete impactful solutions based on what people really need and not what you think they need.
One last thing, I’ve seen people in LinkedIn and Twitter offering free time to mentor people of color. What about following and being mentored by people of color? I know it’s mostly coming from a good place but please take some time to really think about it with empathy and humility.