Apparently, there is a whole genre of white kids doing this. While it can seem performative, there is also real pain in their videos.
If you have different, more progressive opinions from your parents about the Black Lives Matter movement or any other political struggle, it's probably hard for you to describe what it's like to disagree with them. Sometimes, these arguments end in screaming matches. More often than not, they leave you feeling heavy, frustrated, and deeply upset. While most of us never had access to a means to process these emotions, generation Z has found a way to do so. Several young teens are now taking to video-sharing platform TikTok to post clips of themselves ranting about the debates they have with their families and parents in particular.
when ur family be talkin and the only thing in ur mind is "well I know who's never gonna meet their grandbabies now"— London | ✨ check pinned ✨ (@londoncourter) June 2, 2020
I do truly feel for her. I have parents that I rarely speak to for this very reason. The only thing I can offer is stay true to yourself and the older you get the more family you can choose who will love you based on the values you share.— stace (@Selcarp) June 2, 2020
One such teen is TikTok user Izabellemiletello. In a video she uploaded to the platform, she can be seen crying and visibly traumatized. She states, "I literally hate my family so much. It's just... They just tried to argue with me that George Floyd, he deserved [to be murdered] because he did something wrong." Floyd, as has been heavily reported recently, is the latest unarmed black man to be murdered by a white police officer. The teen, actively sobbing, continues, "It is not okay. It's just making me so upset. I don't know why. I do not wanna live here. I hate living in Louisiana, I hate living with these racist f*cks. I just wanna leave." The clip ends there.
Here’s the TikTok video I’m referencing. pic.twitter.com/8xKZjzpReK— safy (@SafyHallanFarah) June 2, 2020
Izabellemiletello's video went viral when Twitter user SafyHallanFarah shared it on the social media platform. She wrote, "My sister sent me a TikTok of a white girl crying about her parents saying George Floyd deserved to die, tearfully disowning them. There’s a whole genre of white gen Z kids processing in real-time what’s new information to them (but not us), that their parents are sociopaths." The video has resonated with several folks who have had similar experiences with their own parents and families. In response to SafyHallanFarah, other Twitter users shared what their childhoods were like growing up with racist families and communities.
yes! even in less extreme cases this is happening. my white friend sent me this— esmé (@urdunniah) June 2, 2020
i’m known 2 be overly optimistic but i really hope we are the generation to finally change things pic.twitter.com/OaWLbFX7tc
One user posted, "Being told my entire life I’d be a disgrace to my entire family if I were a liberal is what kept me so conflicted and confused about my beliefs for so long. This shit is so damaging." Another added, "To be fair, some of our parents raised us to love our neighbors, respect each other, have compassion, etc. Only later when we applied those same values to EVERYONE, including other races, sexual orientations, etc., did we finally see their true colors." One user, in particular, deeply related to the gen-Zer. "I was born and raised in Louisiana and knew she had to be from there the minute she started talking," they wrote. "THIS is why [I] left when I was 25 and refused to raise my children there. I’m almost 50 and feel this girl’s pain because I lived it as well. It’s so hard but she’s doing it!"
To many, the teen's video may just be indulging in a little bit of performative activism. However, there is no doubt that the hurt and pain of debating someone's humanity with someone you are forced to live with is very real, no matter how you choose to process those emotions. To realize that your own family is comfortable defending the perpetrators of injustice can be isolating. As a young teen, the situation may feel inescapable. One Twitter user put it best: "There are a lot of white parents out there who love white supremacy more than they love their children." This realization can be daunting, but it is heartening to see the youth stand up against bigots - even if those bigots happen to be their parents.