If you have been following celeb news, you know that hackers posted private photos of Leslie Jones online this week. This occurred only weeks after Jones was attacked online by trolls, making racists comments and threats for her role in “Ghostbusters”. Yesterday the hashtag #BlackMenSupportLeslie surfaced in Jones’s defense. Read why its creator, Blake Simons, started the trend.
What inspired you step up and be the man to start the #BlackMenSupportLeslie hashtag?
Black women in my life have inspired me to step up and to be a better ally/accomplice towards Black women. I have to thank Black women for teaching me about intersectionality and misogynoir. I started the hashtag because I wanted to be able to reciprocate the love that Black women have showed me in my life. Black women have always been here for Black men, even when we don’t deserve it, so it’s about time that we as Black men stand up and support Black women. #BlackMenSupportLeslie is a start, hopefully this hashtag will inspire more Black men to be better allies towards Black women both online and real life.
Were you a Leslie fan prior to recent events? If so, what was your favorite role that she played?
To be honest, I have only seen some of her coverage of the Olympics. I saw what was happening to her online, and I wanted show that as a Black man that I support and love her.
Has Leslie tweeted or reached out to you since the hashtag started?
She has not, I just hope that she is taking time to heal. Hopefully one of the tweets was able to be a light during a dark time.
Looking over your Twitter, I see you are quite the activist. What other causes and movements do you support?
I am an organizer in the Black Lives Matter movement. I serve as the communications director of the Afrikan Black Coalition (ABC), which is a statewide coalition of 15 Black Student Union’s in the state of California. I organize for the liberation of all Black Lives.
As an organizer, I have worked on private prison divestment campaigns as well as student demands. Most recently, ABC forced the University of California to divest around $30 million from private prisons. Through ABC, we have also launched numerous successful demands for institutional change on different UC and Cal State campuses. These demands are improving the material conditions of Black students on campus.
Be sure to follow and support Blake as well at @BlakeDontCrack.