In online experiment, white man experiences difficulty of being black
A white man can finally say that he knows what it feels like to be a black woman. At least in the virtual sense.
Two weeks ago, Christopher Carbone participated in a social experiment. He swapped his Twitter pic for that of a black woman’s, as part of #RaceSwapExp. He wrote about his experience.
I learned a few lessons about white supremacy and misogyny while tweeting as “Christine” with a picture of Feminista Jones as my avi.
1. My follower count went up by about 65. The vast majority of these were social justice-minded people; many (not all) were women of color. I’m not complaining. In fact, I’m thrilled.
2. My troll count went from a handful per week to many more, overnight. I was blocking/reporting around 15 to 25 of them per day. Many were eggs, some were white liberals, some were right-wingers and others were just dudes of unknown political origin.
3. The level of hateful tweets went from zero to off the charts. With many of these trolls, I would respond once and then block them, or just block them. One such troll, @vincentBrook666, tweeted the following to me in all caps.
“@vincentBrook666: @christocarbone CRY A F*****G RIVER ADN GET LYNCHED YOU DIRTY F*****G N***ER” why are you so mad?
Carbone concluded the summation of his experience by writing, “Even so, no matter what happened to me, it was just an experiment. I was (and am) privileged—I knew that in a few days I could go back to the safety of my regular avi. For the brilliant women of color that I follow, that’s not an option. If nothing else, this experience has given a new urgency to my personal resolve: I will work to dismantle white supremacy, decenter whiteness and center the voices of black people in my work and my life.”
Do you think experiments like the one explained above are one of the keys to getting people to understand racism?
Or is this just another “novelty” experiment that won’t yield any significant results?
Sound off below!