While communities of color constantly find themselves fighting back against the racist and white supremacist realities of American and global culture, they also often battle another more insidious oppressive force: colorism.
Whether one considers themselves a BIPOC (Black or indigenous person of color) or they come from any other non-white racially or ethnic background, they are likely to have familiarity with concepts of colorism. Almost every non-white race has its own form of this dangerous pathology that “lighter is better.”
In effect, we become our own problematic enemy when we embrace colorism. That is precisely why it is difficult to combat — it requires us to look inward at internalized aspects of white supremacy and anti-blackness (or anti-dark skin). Though it is difficult, it’s still worth calling out when you see it in yourself or others. Here’s how: