Covering Doesn't Solve The Problem

Everyone covers.

Covering is the act of

downplaying those aspects of their identities that are based on race, gender, sexual orientation, religion, and disability, in an effort to "fit in" and get ahead professionally and personally. Kenji Yoshino

Nobody likes their parts of their identity to be ridiculed or shamed in public. To avoid this, people tuck their seemingly unsavoury parts of themselves in the shadows, away from judging eyes.

Some change their accent to hide their social class. Some people dye their hair to hide their age. Some avoid association with a group to detach themselves from their negative stereotypes.

People cover for different reasons. People cover to "fit in" or appear more competent. Others cover for survival, or to avoid criticism, discrimination and even death.

Covering does not solve the bigger problem. It is like hiding cigarettes from a smoker or concealing liquor from the alcoholic.

Everyone has their hopes, desires and dreams. Have some compassion and empathy. This helps to create a safe space for people who cover.

Over time, they may gain the courage to show up as their authentic selves.

Inspired by Kenji Yoshino's Covering: The Hidden Assault on Our Civil Rights