It is time for blogger #3! I particularly enjoyed interviewing Brendan from Blind Injustice because we got to talk about some really important things that aren’t talked about enough. I highly suggest that you all check out his blog because it is absolutely fantastic!
Tell me a bit about yourself.
Over time, I realized that many of us, myself included, have many injustices that we’re blind to and/or blindly commit. That realization helped motivate me to start the blog as a platform to openly discuss (and hopefully start eliminating the blindness that many of us have about) various injustices. And yes, that includes blindness to my own injustices–I’m not off the hook, by any means.
As the goal of the blog was to discuss and (hopefully) start eliminating our blindness to various injustices, the name of the blog, Blind Injustice, became a good fit for me. I considered other titles, most especially “The Prejudice We’re Not Aware Of,” but that title just didn’t seem catchy to me.
I personally am a big fan of your blog because I appreciate the conversations about topics that many people may not want to talk about. For those who are just now being introduced to your blog, could give a few examples of the types of discussions you’ve posted?
Yes, I indeed discuss topics that many of us may not even want to talk about.
For example, I doubt many of us would want to discuss the connection between slavery and the chocolate that many of us eat. I also doubt that we’d want to post about this during Easter, which is one of the major times of year for buying chocolate. In spite of that, I decided to make a post around Easter time on slavery and chocolate.
I also doubt that many of us want to talk about how some troops in the United States are not paid a living wage (something I did a few weeks ago). It’s easier to say “support our troops” and be done with it than actually do anything.
In addition to posts like those, I’ve also discussed a variety of topics that I think are not on most of our radars. For example, issues like ageism and slavery don’t get that much attention, yet I have an ageism section and a slavery section on my blog.
I love that! I love that you not only talk about things that people often ignore but also things that people just might not even know.
How do you come up with the topics that you write about? Do you see something on the news and then do some research? What’s your process?
Thanks! I think it’s important to talk about things that people might not even know about.
There’s actually no rhyme or reason as to how I come up with the topics I write about! Maybe you can relate to this as a fellow writer, but there are times when certain topics just come to your mind.
But once a topic comes to my mind, I do research before I write. After then, I write and edit as necessary.
Agreed. Sometimes things just happen and you feel the need to write about it, I totally understand that.
Writing about topics like this can stir up mixed responses. While talking about feminism and race I’ve made some really great friends. but have also been attacked and people have written things about me while twisting my words. What has your experience been like so far?
Yes, these topics can stir up mixed responses. My experiences have been mixed too, and that goes back to my pre-blogging days to be honest. For example, talking about LGBTQ+ issues has resulted in making some great friends (including people who felt on the margins in their faith communities) but it has also certainly created some negative responses too. Other topics have no doubt resulted in positive or negative responses, but I think LGBTQ+ stands out because I’ve had such extreme experiences on this issue.
Earlier you mentioned that your blog has a section dedicated to ageism. In my opinion that particular topic is one that many people don’t seem to know about. What sort of issues have you come across regarding that topic?
My blog does have a section dedicated to ageism! I make sure to do posts on ageism on a regular basis, especially since (as you said) it’s a topic that many people don’t seem to know about.
To answer your question, I think that the biggest ageism-related issue I’ve come across is the dismissal of someone’s talents or ideas solely on the basis of age. I think that this happens at all ends of the age spectrum, ranging from individuals over 55 being labeled as “too qualified” (often a subtle term for, “You’re too old.”) to teenage gun control activists getting dismissed because they are “too young” (something I wrote a blog post about).
I also notice that we like to make generalizations about entire age groups. For example, I’ve heard many people stereotype my age group (also known as the millennials) as lazy, entitled, or not knowing the value of hard work. I’ve also heard people stereotype the age group labeled as baby boomers as the people who’ve ruined the United States. While there are definitely lazy millennials and baby boomers who haven’t helped our country, painting those entire generations with such a broad brush is unfair and ageist.
A third major ageism-related issue is that being old is viewed as “bad.” The anti-aging industry is expected to be worth hundreds of billions of dollars in the coming years! That is insane! This industry is built on the ageist notion that being old is a negative thing.
I don’t pay much attention to “beauty” products but you’re right about the anti aging stuff. I never knew that industry was so large.
We talked about your experience advocating for LGBTQ+ rights earlier, do you think (or know) that that section of your blog has the most uploaded content?
Yeah, honestly I never knew the anti-aging industry was so large myself until I started doing research on it.
Looking at my various subjects, it actually looks like I’ve published more on racial issues than LGBTQ+ rights (8 posts on racial issues, 5 on LGBTQ+ issues as of my writing this). I have to say though that I’m quite surprised that I even have 5 posts on the subject!
You already have a good number of tabs for different topics. Are there any topics that aren’t there now that you’ve considered adding?
To answer your question, I currently don’t have a tab for body image, but I’ve considered having a tab for that. Furthermore, once I write another post or two on the subject I may add a tab for that.
A lot of us (myself included, at times) have struggled with body image. Also, based on the popularity of my one post on body image issues (probably one of my posts with the highest number of views and likes), I think there is a real hunger for bloggers who cover injustices surrounding body image issues.
Please do! That’s a good topic. I’ve talked a bit about body image also and it is definitely something that should be discussed more often. A lot of people seem to appreciate having a space to discuss this. People are so open about it and super supportive of each other which is always nice to see.
Are there any tabs that you already have that but haven’t written about in a while?
Yes, it’s definitely nice to see the supportiveness of people on body image. I hope to continue contributing to that supportiveness myself!
Hmmm…so I haven’t written on the topics of LGBTQ+ or indigenous peoples tabs in awhile. I am working on an article for the LGBTQ+ tab though, so that might change by the time my interview gets published.
I personally, as a woman of color, really appreciate your allyship and the way that you are so willing to talk about things that a lot of people choose to ignore. Do you have any advice for other bloggers who also want to be active allies and either don’t know where to start or are afraid of backlash?
I offer a few tips on allyship/places where people can start:
- Start by teaching yourself about issues pertaining to the marginalized group(s) you hope to become an ally of.
- Listen to the experiences of people in the marginalized group(s). If you, for example, want to be an ally of immigrants but don’t listen to immigrants’ experiences, would one really be an ally of immigrants then?
- Don’t be silent, period. In the words of Archbishop Desmond Tutu (the one person I’d LOVE to meet in life above anyone else), “If you are neutral in situations of injustice, you have chosen the side of the oppressor.”
- Try not to be too afraid of backlash. There will be some, depending on your circle of friends (for example, backlash on LGBTQ+ topics if you surround yourself with conservative Christian friends). It’s not the end of the world. 🙂
I’m sure there are other tips on being an ally, but hopefully that’s a start for people!
Yes, I love that quote. It’s so true!
Also, those are good tips, the first steps really are simple.
We’ve have reached the end of out interview but are there any things that you would like to add about yourself or your blog?
I think we hit on the major things with both myself and the blog. Thanks for doing this! I also look forward to reading about other bloggers too.
Thank you again Brendan! As I said before, make sure you follow his blog and if you have questions about being an active ally, feel free to reach out to either of us. Brendan’s email address is firstname.lastname@example.org and you can also connect with him on Facebook and Twitter.