I call myself a social justice researcher, meaning I've made central in my professional work issues of prejudice, inequality, and justice. It permeates most parts of my life - I love artists like Immortal Technique and J. Cole who take a clear political stance on things; I follow Latino Rebels and Presumed Incompetent on Facebook; I gravitate toward movies like Dear White People or Cesar Chavez, but will still critique them when I see something contrived or over the top. Basically, I make a point to stay woke.
And doing so can get exhausting.
Sometimes I just want to binge watch the redux version of a show I watched growing up (i.e. Fuller House) without thinking about how white the cast is or the lack of representation in media. Sometimes I just wanna go shopping without thinking about the children's hands that were used to make the garment I'm trying on. Sometimes I wanna use the word "wanna" without having to think about code-switching or what the intentional use of grammatically-incorrect vernacular means for the respectability of my professional brand.
Today I'm tired. Today I'm exercising my right to pause the woke button and just live - I'm going shopping later without worrying about my own consumerism. I will then go home and maybe clean up (maybe not), probably sit my bum on the couch with the dogs and settle in for a good Netflix binge. Because I'm human. And while I've dedicated my life to the good fight, I don't believe that means it is at the expense of my sanity or that I have to always be on message.
I deserve a little time to put away this paper on power structures and the social control of Latino bodies. I can wait a day before I get back to interrogating the effect of academic training on the implicit bias of health professionals.
I might take the dogs to the dog park later.