I Don’t Need Allies; I Need Comrades

note: this is pretty raw, unedited, emotional output. Please don’t expect polished and shiny. I don’t have it in me right now.

My partner and I found ourselves having similar conversations with two separate people this morning. Amazing, wonderful friends who are so aware of their own privilege and the space they take up that they are battling with conflicting feelings as the results of the election sink in. Friends who are cis, pass as white, pass as heterosexual, blend in well with society. Friend who are struggling in isolation because this impacts them, but don’t want to take away space from people who are feeling this in a particularly visceral way because they already take up a lot of space in society.

My partner and I looked at each other this morning and reiterated these words back to one another:

We don’t need allies. We need comrades.

I need people to take up fucking space. I need you, in all of your privilege, to take up space with me. We can argue identity politics later. We can argue what queer means and what ally means and semantics and all that jazz, but right now, I need your voice. I need your space.

I am terrified, and I am so angry that I am terrified. I am hearing the stories of my elders echoing in my ears and I am tired, but not nearly as tired as they are- at least, the ones who are still living.

My queerness is in my skin, etched into my face, in my bones, stretched across my body. My queerness is a walking target, and I am terrified, and I know that I’m not nearly as terrified as some others: people of color. Immigrants. Muslims. Women.

I need comrades. I need people to take up space. We cannot do this alone. So many of us are exhausted, and there are those who are more exhausted than we are, who have been doing this longer, who need us to move forward and protect them.

This isn’t about one group of people or another. This isn’t the time to tell someone they aren’t as affected by what happened as you are. Check your privilege, absolutely. But there is a difference between asking someone to check their privilege and telling them how to feel about their grief.

Everyone I know is directly impacted by this election. Everyone I know is terrified. This is not the time to isolate people. This is not the time to decide who is (identity) “enough” to publicly grieve. They may not look like you. They may navigate the world differently than you do. Frankly, I don’t care. If you’re hurting, if you’re grieving, if you’re scared, if you’re broken, I have space here for you. Because this is not about making allies, but building comrades. And the people who have my back don’t always look like me and live like me and think like me. But they have my back, and I have theirs.

I don’t need empty words and lip service. I need people to show up. Bring the people who have your back. I don’t care what they look like or how they live. If they keep you safe, if you trust them and they trust you, then they are welcome here.

I need people to choose to take up space in the ways that we cannot choose to be invisible. I need your voices and bodies and human buffers.  But even more than that, I need to fight, to fuck, to lock eyes with you across a room, to hold you tighter than I have before, to live dangerously, to hold your hand, to see you at my door with flowers, to send you postcards, to meet your kids, to walk down the street with you, to create and love and fight and resist and live and survive and thrive and move and dance and kink and laugh and look and be real fucking people sharing space.

I don’t need allies. I need comrades.

crossposted to FetLife

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