As I set up this series, I had a number of people ask me “what made you think of connecting what’s happening to queer YA?” I want to address this question before we get into the actual posts.
My intention with the Black Lives Matter series is not to connect police violence with queer YA—that would be impossible and inappropriate. Rather, I want to vocalize the Black Lives Matter phrase for our community. YA is extremely white, and queer YA is no exception. GayYA.org is a site that seeks to be a welcoming and inclusive space for everyone. Queer YA needs more black representation and GayYA has too few black contributors. After the non-indictment in Ferguson it became clear that it is past time to focus on this.
Running this series is far from the only thing that needs to be done to improve our community, but I hope it will move us towards better inclusion of the black members in it. And I know it will shine a light on how desperately needed queer black representation is.
Lastly, I am white. While I’ve spent a large amount of time educating myself, I know that I will never stop learning, and am prone to doing problematic things. I know my white privilege enables this. I also know it is my responsibility to educate myself, but GayYA is a space for everyone. So if I do something problematic, or a post on this site or something we post on social media is upholding racist narratives, makes you uncomfortable, or uses the wrong language please let me know. You can contact us via the social media, or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.