5 Articles: How to Be an Ally

One way to understand allyship is to think of it as being in solidarity with communities and people we may have historically, socially and/or culturally been differentiated from. Going beyond performative allyship (doing something because you're told to, because it's the cool thing to do or because you feel forced to)—and practicing real, authentic allyship instead—can be difficult. Allyship requires deep thought rather than impulsive action. Here are five articles from CPL's Online Resources that provide some clarity and advice on how to be an ally in our world.

"These Best Friends Created a Wildly Popular Google Doc About How to Be an Ally to the Black Community" by Travis M. Andrews
The Washington Post, June 19, 2020
Beginning with a phone call to her best friend rather than a quick post on social media, Autumn Gupta showed allyship with care by taking the time to talk and putting aside time to mentally process the news with others. By doing so, she came up with Justice in June, a list of helpful resources to share with everyone.

"It's Better to Be Angry Together" by Philip N. Cohen
Contexts, Fall 2017
Although an older article, its relevance still stands. Cohen illuminates some of the reason behind the act of protesting, making the important point that it isn't always a clear political calling, but one that is spurred by a need for togetherness and a desire to rise up in the name of our common humanity.

"Platforms Denounce Racism That Thrives There" by Kevin Roose
The New York Times, June 20, 2020
Roose explains how big companies that show their support for political movements sometimes fail to address how their policies and practices aid the very opposite of these political movements. Simply put, big companies like Facebook and Twitter seem to be unsuccessful in developing authentic bipartisanship.

"White Suburbanites Raising Protest Voices: Allies Hope They Follow Through in Call to End Racism" by Jennifer Johnson, Kimberly Fornek and Karen Ann Cullotta
Chicago Tribune, July 8, 2020
In the Chicago suburbs, recent events have been a wake-up call signaling that the progress made since the civil rights movement seems to have collapsed. In support of the Black Lives Matter movement of the 21st century, many white residents who live on the outskirts of Chicago (Park Ridge, Winnetka and LaGrange, to name a few) have gathered to rally in solidarity against racism's injustice.

"Black-Owned Businesses You Can Support Today: Redirecting Your Economic Resources Is One Way to Effect Change" by Shanna Shipin
Glamour, June 1, 2020
One way to help the movement is to start buying from Black-owned businesses. Black businesses have historically suffered economically so this small step makes a difference. This article lists some examples, but there are many more small (and local) businesses you can support to help out the community and create change.