A Letter from the Editor-in-Chief
Updated: Jul 2, 2020
Dear Watch That Negro Subscribers, Members, Friends and Allies,
It is necessary that the Watch That Negro team tell you exactly why this platform was established. As Editor-In-Chief (although I do not write this alone), I have received inquiries about the goal and the vision of Watch That Negro. I’d like to begin this statement by referencing our explanation of our name found under the About section on the website which states that:
"'Watch That Negro' is a lyric in an unreleased song written by Monique Bingham, a self-proclaimed Queen of the Underground house music scene. In the song, Bingham repeats the phrase while watching a man groove on the dance floor. He expresses himself in his most natural way. It's this expression that WTN seeks to embody in its submissions and its contributors. We want the world to watch us do us.”
We exist because people of color have very few spaces to candidly discuss our feelings in long form, without the requirement of degrees or white-deemed ‘credibility.’ WTN aims to be a space for us, by us. We do not, nor have we ever, required our contributors to provide any credentials that are regularly used to serve the larger societal conception of what is deemed ‘valuable’ or 'intellectual.' That lack of credentials usually discounts our voices from narratives that are shown by large media conglomerates.
At the risk of being a bit reductionist, we are an expansion of Black Twitter, Black Instagram, and Black social media platforms that communities of colors have populated, but unfortunately, have not been heard to the extent of which is needed for change. This expansion, I believe, has the power to legitimize our voices because, dammit, Black people and people of color are intelligent, have thoughts and things to say with and without BAs, MAs or PHDs. We have something to say and we need to be heard.
We are calling upon the academics within the sociological, political, philosophical, etc. realms to realize that legitimate, informative writing and knowledge contribution isn’t exclusively created within academic spaces anymore. It is so often derivative and facilitated by queer people of color, whether or not that be (forcefully) behind the scenes. Watch That Negro exists to place our contributions in the spotlight, where they deserve to be.
In revolutionary power, The Watch That Negro Team