A site where people could offer and request services ranging from talking about their life to funding education sounds like a wonderful concept.
Natasha Marin, creator of the website Reparations, could have done just that. Instead, she created a site where “People of Color” can request services from “people who identify as White.”
This is not a joke.
People with paler skin are expected to turn to this site to cleanse themselves of their racial guilt. Here’s the introduction on its About page:
What if you actually did something meaningful for someone before the end of the year?
What if a stranger restored your belief in humanity, if only for a moment, by supporting you and allowing you to claim something you need in a material way?
I invite People of Color to ask for what we need to feel better, be happier, be more productive by posting in this space. These may be both material and immaterial requests.
I invite people who identify as White to offer services or contributions to People of Color in need of time, energy, substantive care, and support.
This is literally asking people with one skin color to grovel before people of another skin color. This begs critics to use the “if a [insert race] person had done this…” argument.
Let’s see what examples the website provides for these services.
POC 1: I need a massage. This week.
White Person 1: [posts Groupon with code for redemption]
Not unreasonable. Just someone asking for a massage. Some other scenarios presented include therapy and housing. The fictional Person Of Color [POC] even offers to pay for the massage. This seems like a place to negotiate services between individuals.
POC 3: I need groceries.
White Person 3: “I’ll get them for you. PM me and I’ll send an Amazon Fresh or Safeway delivery. You just pick out what you want. I have a $200 limit.”
This isn’t as innocent as the other examples. Does POC 3 pay for these groceries? Is it a simple act of kindness if White Person 3 does this as a “reparation”? So many questions raised.
POC 6: I want to scream and cuss at someone.
White Person 6: “I volunteer as tribute. How do we set this up?”
Venting may be cathartic, but specifically asking for a white person to be on the receiving end – that’s racist.
POC 7: I want to escape this cruel world in a *Specific Videogame* but can’t afford it on Steam right now. This is not a crisis, I just don’t trust people easily and want to see if this works.
White Person 7: Thank you for giving me the chance to do something concrete and relatively easy. I was quietly hating myself for doing nothing.
“I was quietly hating myself.”
Is this how Marin sees white people? What if someone is *gasp* not simply white?
How do biracial people use this site?
Maybe they just scream and cuss at themselves.