Blaming victims


There is still no new information on the Pixel 4 XL. In desperation, I’m reaching out to Google about this, hoping they have some pull to get some real answers.


I’m seeing some folks on Twitter, even some with experience with economic hardship, castigating others who insist they have to go to work despite a widening shutdown of the economy. There’s something these folks need to understand:

People whose lives have been reduced to a struggle for survival against a relentlessly cruel and oppressive economic system for long enough can imagine nothing else. The relentless traumas of such an existence have pushed everything else aside. We are victims, just as surely as those who actually come down with COVID-19.

Criticizing us only amplifies our trauma. Telling people who rely on tips for their livelihoods or who work in the gig economy that unemployment insurance is on the way, telling people who’ve spent our entire lives struggling to pay rent that evictions are being frozen—all this only minimizes what for us is an existential struggle. None of it explains how we will survive, how we will ever recover from lost income, because even those of us (not gig workers) who will be eligible for unemployment benefits will receive a mere fraction of what we would otherwise have earned.

We still have to buy groceries (and by the way, food pantries generally aren’t vegan). We still have to pay the utilities. We still have to pay rent. When we lose income, we fall (further) behind on all this. We wonder how we will ever recover.

People like me are way past the point where words reassure. We’ve heard words before. Again and again and again. We see only the threats of yet more traumas.

If you’re among those critics, you need to shut the fuck up. Because all you’re doing is reinforcing the sense of being judged, the sense of being blamed, the sense of oppression from forces over which we have no control.

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