Diversity in the knitting community

In the knitting community on Instagram, there is an ongoing discussion about inclusiveness and everyday racism. It got me thinking a lot. It probably a started with a blog post by Karen Templer. I have to admit, I wouldn’t have realized the impact of the content between the lines, hadn’t been for the important discussion it led to. But after almost of week of reading and listening to a lot of IG voices,  I begin to understand. And feel ashamed. And I am thankful, I learned.

I am not going to be defensive about my own behaviour, even if this might make me vulnerable (try it, you will feel it). I just want to add a few bits to speak up. And be another be a starting point for all who would like to read, listen and keep the discussion going. There cannot be enough of them.

Momentarily, I am reading Becoming by Michelle Obama. I haven’t finished the book yet (knitting gets in my way too often) but when I read the part of her time in Princeton a few weeks ago, there was a part that made me think a lot.  So here are the lines from Michelle Obama’s book, I would like to cite:

“I imagine the fact that the administrators of Princeton didn’t love the fact students of colour largely stuck together. The hope was that all of us would mingle in heterogenous harmony, deepening the quality of student life across the board. It’s a worthy goal. I understand when it comes to campus diversity, the ideal would be something resembling what’s often shown on colleges brochures – smiling students socializing in neat ethnically blended groups. But even today, with white students continuing to outnumber students of colour on college campuses, the burden of assimilation is largely put on the shoulders of minority students. In my experience, it’s a lot to ask.” *

It’s a lot to ask.

I had to put the book aside to process better. At that time, it made me think a lot about the German buzz words integration and inclusion.

diverseknitty

Now with the Instagram discussion, a lot of pieces are falling together. I found it especially shocking reading all the answers when Sukrita Mahon (@su.krita) asked the following question in her Instagram stories: “BIPOC folx, hit me with your experience of racism in the community”.

Sukrita Mahon will keep the answers in her Instagram story highlights. I would like to urge you all to read them. Thank you, Sukrita Mahon for asking that seemingly simple question. And for all the answers.

Follow #diverseknitty on Instagram

For the record, @su.krita is not the only one voice. There are also many others. However, you will find a lot more through her. Check them out and follow them. Make also sure you are following the Hashtag #diverseknitty – for a better Instagram feed. Read, listen and accept, think again, before speaking out. And first of all: Don’t get defensive, be vulnerable.

BIPOC are that ALL THE TIME.

* Michelle Obama, Becoming, Penguin Random House, 2018, p. 74

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