In this episode, we discuss the phenomenon of fuckery known as “reaching” AKA, making something out of nothing. It happens, you may think it’s not a real issue but it can be. We’ll explain why
What is reaching?
Reaching is (in this episode) defined as actively analyzing any given media or situation to find something that can be interpreted as offensive, insensitive, poorly representing etc. This can happen though exaggerations, conspiracy theorizing, intentional misrepresentations, projection and more.
Need examples? We got you.
Remember the Dove ad? How somebody literally chopped a few seconds of it to make it appear as if Dove was equating blackness to being dirty and whiteness to being clean? This is an example of reaching. Upon first glance of this ad, would you think it was racist without anybody first telling you it was racist?
Now, these are all up for debate and everyone’s opinion will vary but we’ve explained in the actual episode why these would be considered examples of reaching in our eyes.
Remember the IG picture of Nicki Minaj getting her hair styled by @kimblehaircare , a dark skinned woman? Well, since that woman had dark skin, social media cried colorism.
AGAIN :These are all up for debate and everyone’s opinion will vary but we’ve explained in the actual episode why these would be considered examples of reaching in our eyes. You’re allowed to be offended by whatever you want!
So why is this something we as a community should be concerned about?
We shouldn’t necessarily be concerned by these example, but by reaching in general. Here’s why:
Crying Wolf Effect. As a community, our legitimate grievances are not taken seriously. We are accused of hanging on to the past, being oversensitive, etc. It’s pure discrediting and discrediting has been an effective tactic in stifling any and all social progress. Crying wolf only makes discrediting the black community that much easier.
Performative Woke Reachers. In this Woke Era, we have people wanting to appear as profound and alert as possible. To do so, sometimes they’ll reach in attempts to earn “woke points” from the black community in the process. They’ll reach because they want the attention and recognition , not because they have a genuine concern. Nowadays, Social media is platform where you can literally get famous on with the power of just one viral post.
Fake Outrage. This goes back to discrediting the black community. Sometimes, you’ll see an artificial, meme, status etc claiming that there is public outrage around some subject. This is also used as a tactic to discredit black people by claiming there is fake outrage. Keep an eye out for this type of reaching.
So what can we do about it?
Well, there’s nothing we can do to stop reaching altogether. People will do what the want at the end of the day. Plus, we must consider that just because something appears to be reaching in our eyes, doesn’t mean it IS. Some folks are literally offended by what others may consider to be minor or silly and we’re not playing Offense Police here… However, you can treat it just like a like a rumor. We can recognized it and decide that it stops with you. This break it’s momentum. We can call out the reacher for what they’re doing but not engage any further than that. We can also decide that we aren’t going to share the reachy content to keep it from spreading. This can be hard to do as resisting from engaging in something that’s caught your interest is difficult, just do your best and consider the reasons above about why this is important.