In most recent years, the term “People of Color” has risen to extreme popularity. From news media outlets to YouTube videos to social media users, it has become a term used most often to describe the mistreatment of and injustices toward non-white citizens of the world. I am very much a proponent of speaking up for the “under dog” but I do not agree with how the use of this term has attempted to replace “Black”.
Black people have been referred to by many names over the years. Negroes, niggers, Black, African American and even colored. I think many look at “People of Color” as a replacement for or better version of colored. I beg to differ. I personally feel it is very much a totally different term. I think we must first look at who this term is referencing usually when used in todays society. More often than not, the person using it is Black and discussing a situation concerning the Black struggle. In my opinion, “People of Color” has been adopted as a more digestible term; a way of covering the fear and stigma associated with standing up for Black people.
While I understand the premise of that logic, I do not agree. People of Color is inclusive of all people of non white/European background. Though the term is a bit more palatable, all “People of Color” don’t share the same experiences and inequalities of Black people. Also, other People of Color don’t stand for Black people as much as we stand for them. Native Americans, Asians and even Spanish speaking people (Hispanics, Latino/as, etc…) have a struggle that is uniquely their own and they stand with and for each other.
We must not forget who we are as Black people. We are people of African descent FIRST and can’t forget the struggle AND strength of our people from yesterday and today. Out first obligation, if we stand at all, is to stand for US first.
What are your thoughts? Do you think POC is acceptable when discussing issues regarding Black people? What terms do you use? Let’s have a conversation…