Aside from the typical questions like, “Are you in a relationship?” and “How are your grades?” there’s another reason many college students dread Thanksgiving dinner. Given the current political landscape, having to sit down with people who might have the complete opposite views of you is unpleasant to say the least. It leaves students with a few options: Avoid any “controversial” topics, or display your views loud and clear.
Rebecca Malstrom – a sophomore communications major at the University of Maryland College Park – chose the latter. Her parents told her to change out of her Black Lives Matter t-shirt before dinner, so she did…into another Black Lives Matter t-shirt.
Her tweet has since gone viral, getting over 26,000 retweets at the time this article was published. Fresh U talked with Rebecca over Twitter direct message to find out a bit more about her decision to wear her Black Lives Matter shirts.
“My family had a strict ‘no politics’ rule,” Rebecca told Fresh U. "[So their reaction was] literally just a blank stare and 'no politics at Thanksgiving'...Even though I don’t think that saying 'a group of people don’t deserve to die' is a political statement. My sister was so excited to see me in the shirts though.”
The reactions on Twitter were mixed as well.
“I’ve gotten a ton of positive support. Invites to people’s family thanksgivings, Christmas, BBQs, cookouts, weddings, everything. I’ve event received a few wedding proposals in my DMs,” Rebecca said. “I’ve gotten a few white supremacists and neo-nazis trolling me but I’ve been ignoring them.”
However, Rebecca also explained to Fresh U that while she appreciates the positive feedback, she understands it could be a bit problematic.
“People have been treating me like a savior literally just for being a decent person, but I definitely appreciate all the support I’ve gotten. One thing that I’ve found is the unfortunate fact that people would rather listen to me speak about racism than to someone who actually faces it.”
That being said, she also spoke on the importance of using that privilege to continue speaking out on these issues.
“White allies need to speak up because if we have white privilege, we have to use it to amplify the voices of those who are silenced.”
Lead Image Credit: Twitter