And I'm DESPERATELY terrified that this is going to come off as very clueless white lady, so if I do that, please tell me so I can fix/learn/never do that again.
I work in an office where I am one of the only white people. Thanks in large part to the PoC kinja community, whenever racially related issues come up, I manage to be one of the only white people not to say something totally stupid and clueless and offensive (I'm not asking for a cookie, I just want to thank you all for helping me get here!).
Today, a well-meaning colleague bestowed upon me the title of "honorary Black person." Now, I obviously will not use this to negate all my white privilege and go around shouting the N word and calling every Black person I see "dog" or "homie" or whatever else it is white people think Black people do, I'm going to accept this as a compliment and move on.
HOWEVER. Here is the part that gets sticky. I am aware that this can lead to problematic behavior in white people. And that some white people DO use this to go around and be extra ignorant. This is obviously the fault of the white people, not their well meaning PoC friends who just wanted to pay their friends a compliment. But those dumbasses are out there, and they WILL use this.
Do I say nothing to my friend? Do I accept that a white lady has NO place telling a Black woman how to talk? Do I say "hey friend, thank you for that, I know what you were trying to say, but don't forget there are white assholes out there who would use that as an excuse to be bigger assholes? I trust that you only said that to me because you know I'm not like that and you have good judgement, but I just wanted to be sure?"*
I really just want to do the right thing here and be the best ally I can be. And just FYI, I know that I am NOT an "honorary Black person" just because someone said so. I hope I don't sound like I think that. I JUST WANT TO DO WHAT IS RIIIIIIGHT.
*ETA THANK YOU Yummy Bird for pointing out how patronizing this is. Hello person of color, did you know there are racists out there? So glad I could educate you!