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Illustration for article titled ICYMI: WoC Changed Their Twitter Avis to White Men, Then What?

Something incredibly, depressingly predictable.


To be clear, this whole thing started as a joke. Or a bet, really. Last fall, one of my Twitter followers dared me to change my avatar and assume the personality of a DudeBro for a week. It seemed easy enough. I'd spent my formative years studying white culture, and considered myself an expert on all of The Things White People Like™, like yoga, collie shepherds, and Stephen Colbert. So I hit Google, searched for a random picture of a random white guy, and threw it up on my profile. I left my name and bio unchanged.

Sure enough, people (most of them, white dudes) engaged me differently. The number of snarky, condescending tweets dropped off considerably, and discussions on race and gender were less volatile. I had suddenly become reasonable and level-headed. My racial identity no longer clouded my ability to speak thoughtfully, and in good faith. It was like I was a new person.

Once I went back to Black, it was back to business as usual.

As usual, the comments on this article are full of amazingly contorted reasoning about how this was a terrible thing to do and didn't prove anything at all about racism because reasons.


The truth is, of course, this is a picture-perfect (SWIDT?) example of racism and misogyny in action. Add it to your arsenal when some asshole tries to explain to you about how racism and sexism are over now, and how there's no such thing as anti-black or anti-woman abuse.

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