On one hand, as a person who grew up in the RBC, this is too, too relatable, but also, not, because I was a young Afro-Latina growing up in a church that literally has a “sister church” in my family’s homeland: the colonization was literal and spiritual and physical.

Decolonizing does not mean “Make colonialist institutions like the church inclusive and diverse” as you’re misusing it. It means naming institutions like the church as colonialist and inherently violent towards communities of color, especially women of color, queer folks of color, etc, and as being the ones that superimposed the violent norms you’re naming here. It means to deeply look, understand and question the impact white supremacist colonialist structures and institutions such as the church have impacted communities of color. The term “decolonize” is deeply racialized, too much so for a white Christian woman to use so lightly (and in such a disparate fashion like you do.) You talk like the church (using it as a great umbrella term for all white Christianity, bear with me) was merely infected with patriarchy as opposed to structured in an inherently patriarchal fashion and itself the defining institution that instilled it everywhere else that European Christianity went through colonialism. White Europeans colonizing the world and the church are not separate entities. This topic of sexual colonization within or by the church has been discussed by WOC currently or with histories in the church and non-Christian WOC in countries or communities that were colonized. Elevate those stories instead.

I’m not trying to say you aren’t entitled to your experiences, or that the experiences of being infringed upon as a white woman in the church isn’t yet linked to what happens to people actually colonized by the church, but you misunderstand what your place and role is in colonization as it certainly isn’t of the one who was colonized, and thus erase the struggles of people of color striving for decolonization, which is often about dismantling the violent, imposed role and importance of Christianity in their communities and unpacking how it was used to subjugate and violate them.

Also, it’s really not cool to make fun of the fact that Darren Wilson experienced no repercussions for the murderous act of anti-Black violence he committed.

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Writer. Community organizer. Errant punk. Ne’er do well. Fire starter. Email: Dominicanamalisima@gmail.com

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Briana L. Urena-Ravelo

Briana L. Urena-Ravelo

Writer. Community organizer. Errant punk. Ne’er do well. Fire starter. Email: Dominicanamalisima@gmail.com