I have been a big follower of Rock N Roll Bride for a number of years and was delighted to see this year she’s become a print presence as well as having an online space that is hugely popular for good reason. However, and it is a big however, it’s only been more recently that I have noticed that entry after entry we see a sea of white. I’m not talking about white wedding dresses but white women. Slim, white, abled-bodied women.
I made a comment to this effect about being bored of just seeing slim women and used the RNRB hashtag, expecting to start a conversation amongst people perhaps but not really seeing anything more happen. In enters the owner Kat into the conversation who wants to know what ‘our beef is’.
— Kat Williams (@RocknRollBride) August 3, 2015
It’s all too easy to show frustration at something online and be wrong (it’s also easy to delete a lot of ones own tweets as a lot of what I screencapped doesn’t appear to be on twitter any more). I did my research (despite having been accused numerous times that I haven’t or don’t understand the publication and am altogether Wrong) during my conversation with her and out of the many, many, posts for the entire month of June and July there were 7 fat brides, 7 WoC and 0 visibly disabled entrants. And that is not good enough. Neither is being told this and still spouting tweets as below; it is very gross with its entitlement. Especially as she ignored my comments regarding disabled entrants and PoC – her comments regarding plus size left a lot to be desired.
So if a small group of people, who clearly didn’t do their research properly, want to target me as some “fat hater”, fine…
— Kat Williams (@RocknRollBride) August 4, 2015
I would have, if asked beforehand, said that based on what I’ve seen of Kat that she would have responded in such a way as to genuinely want to know more and be open to dialogue. I would not have expected her to outright ignore the comments regarding PoC being so rarely featured or visibly disabled brides and grooms.
Don’t misunderstand me, I realise she runs a submissions based magazine and blog but be truthful if you are not the white, slim crew why would you enter your wedding when it’s almost all you see? This is where white faces and slim people are failing and failing hard. If you are not getting those entries you need to search for them (Instragram and twitter tagging makes this task easier and Buzzfeed have managed it themselves several times) to feature them. Inclusivity comes from those in power making real efforts to include those who typically get side-lined not crossing their arms and saying I do more than other publications do.
Instead today her twitter is filled with re-tweets of mostly slim, white women sticking up for her, calling us trolls (the rhetoric of those who wish to silence important arguments) and also being wilfully clueless. I don’t want that to be the narrative, this isn’t about you thin, white girls so I asked Debz of Wannabe Princess who created #WeAreTheThey could we hit twitter with a storm of plus size, WoC, disabled and Trans* brides and grooms being awesome to highlight that: We Exist, We matter.
This isn’t about attacking one woman who has built herself up this is about realising that it’s not okay to blindly applaud someone who is now a business and deserves to do better by more than just one type of woman. It’s to show publications that we exist and hopefully all our pictures will inspire RnRB to hunt out more diverse weddings, to be better, to do more. I really hope she does because silencing someone with a sarcastic ‘start your own blog’ is rubbish.
8pm hit twitter, hit instagram and show us your wedding outfits with #WeAreTheThey and #RockNRollBride tags whether you were bride or groom or if like me you are not married show us what as a guest you wore.
WE ARE THE THEY