I recently had a discussion with a few tribe members about my decision to end a past toxic relationship. My tribe thought that perhaps me and this person could reconcile or reengage forging a future healthy bond. My reasons for ending the relationship are so extensive I could write a dissertation and still not provide the full list of offenses. Yet, I found myself explaining my decision again for the millionth time to those who love me and me them. It’s not like I “canceled” the relationship without just cause. Something seriously wrong had been said and done for a long time. It only ended when they “ghosted” (disappeared without explanation) forcing me to learn a valuable lesson about boundaries and authentic love.
We hear constantly in the media about some people being “canceled” for hidden or public behaviors, actions and comments that are in opposition, offensive or violate high moral or ethical standards. Cancel culture refers to the popular practice of withdrawing support for companies or public figures after they have said or or done something legally wrong or in the court of public opinion. The act of group shaming on social media is generally the preferred action taken when cancel culture is enacted. In today’s climate, you can be “cancelled” for a whole range of reasons including racist, homophobic, sexist etc. comments and actions (Nick Cannon, 45, Kevin Hart), sexual predatory behavior (#MeToo Movement offenders Harvey Weinstein, Matt Lauer, Bill Cosby, R. Kelly); hypocritical actions (Andrew Guillum, Jerry Farwell Jr. and wife Becky, Jessica Krug) or even“mean girl” tactics (just think of Ellen Degeneres and the recent staff – – non-celebrities – – comments about her behavior behind the scenes). The “canceling” phenomenon has spread in the public consciousness like a wild fire threatening to scorch anyone not being authentic in their trUth, living a high vibrational moral life or treating their fellow human with respect, love and kindness. In today’s social media culture, what was once “hidden” can and might be “seen” in real time on TikTok, Facebook, YouTube or some other social media source. What would the general public consensus be right now if video after video didn’t “unveil” the actual encounters between unarmed black men and some police officers or individuals seeking vigilante justice? How many innocent black people would be in jail if not for video footage showing the actions of American ‘Karens’ making false allegations?
If you really think about it, “cancel culture” has always existed. Most of us learn very young that you cannot do and say anything to anyone without consequences (at least we were once taught this fact). Even the First Amendment of the US Constitution (freedom of speech) will not protect you from consequences if one offends the wrong group. You may have the right to say or do something but you must also be prepared for push back and potential objections that could have a long lasting impact. Most modern societies establish cultural norms, expectations, moral and ethical standards and boundaries for its citizenry to adhere to with respect to how we treat each other, our communities and humanity in general. These standards also exist within families, friendships and romantic relationships. In this respect, “cancel culture” is a very serious thing outlining for humanity very specific expectations and consequences depending on the circumstances and platform.
There are obvious offenses that might not require one to be “canceled.” A simple humble apology and repentance might be enough to garner forgiveness and reconciliation. Since humans are flawed, redemption is still possible. Many celebrities often go on “apology tours” after crossing a line of no return. Yet, there are other offenses that seemingly strike the soul of an individual, group or society warranting a stronger reaction and recompense (canceling). We almost intuitively know when the offense is worthy of “canceling” because to not send a message of objection might indicate moral or ethical agreement. We cannot as a society condone lying, bullying, harassment of any kind, rape, racism, sexism, homophobia etc. Are we willing to accept grabbing women by the p**ssy as 45 has so publicly stated (jokingly) on camera during an Access Hollywood interview?
At this point in my blogging journey, I have advocated and provided you with my “hard&black” truth so I won’t deviate now. I can be the “cancel” Queen not because I like removing people from my life. It can actually be a very painful process and decision to move on from someone you’ve invested time, energy and love. I don’t take it lightly often teetering before making the final decision. It is a lot easier when there is little to no investment in the people, places or circumstances. I found out the hard way, however, that the longer you wait and accept the unacceptable, the more pain inflicted on oneself. Co-dependency and martyrdom are not indicators of authentic self love and ultimately says a lot about you and the value placed on your heart, mind, body and soul. For the record, I’ve gotten legitimately canceled due to my actions or non-actions but I have also been cancelled unfairly (misjudged and convicted). We should all be cautious about being judge, jury and executioner without conducting due diligence (investigating, vetting sources and gathering evidence about the offense and offender) and allowing for a day of reckoning or court hearing (opportunity to present and view evidence). Some actions can be clearly “seen” – – not hidden – – naked for all to view. Even where there is smoke (triggering or something makes you feel some kinda way), one still has to evaluate any offense to see if it warrants a stricter response. Subjectivity will definitely influence the outcome in most circumstances. All I can say is that the 2020 ME values authentic love above all else and has a lower tolerance for hurtful and manipulative people and bullsh*t. Haven’t you all reached this point too? As MO says, “It is what it is .…”