This is an important lesson that everyone needs to learn. I have learnt mine through my experience with other women of colour.
My hometown, Hong Kong, is currently being watched by international media because of the recent protests for universal suffrage. Hong Kong expats have gathered around the world to express their support for all the freedom fighters back home.
While many of us appreciate the international media attention, I was irritated to see a USyd SAlt member speaking at the Sydney protest on Monday (29/9).
Regardless of her (or her faction’s) intention, her presence on the speaking list was unwanted and not necessary (I do not intend to blame the Sydney protest organizer, as I do not assume everyone to know SAlt’s usual practice). Copies of Red Flag in her hand were not necessary either.
The intention of our protest was to gather Hong Kong natives to discuss how we feel about our future and our worry about our friends and family being exposed to tear gas. We wanted to gather to talk about our appreciation for those individuals fighting for a democratic future under strong heat and tough rain.
Our current oppression and our future are not your toy to recruit more members or sell more copies of Red Flag. You can be aware of international affairs, educate yourselves and show a relative amount of support, but do not make it your own issue.
All I want to say is, this is just another example in a nutshell of how some groups or individuals in the Western world (or in a more specific context, right here on our campus at USyd) see minority cultures as disposable that they can pick up anytime.
Learn how to stay in your lane, it is not that hard.