Evanna Lynch Encourages Social Media Followers to Confront Their White Privilege

Amid ongoing protests against systemic racism and police violence in the United States and other countries, Evanna Lynch (Luna Lovegood) has spoken up about being forced to confront her own white privilege and has urged her social media followers to do the same.

Lynch, who is known for her veganism and animal rights activism, posted to Instagram about how she was recently forced to confront her privilege as a white woman after she was met with criticism for not speaking out in support of the protests and the Black Lives Matter movement. Lynch shared her thoughts in a series of images:

This weekend has been a lot. A few days ago I tweeted about a victory within the animal rights movement and in doing so was called out for being silent about the rights of black people. It was quite shocking because a) animal rights is an intersectional movement and b) it felt absurd that people should accuse me of being on the side of racists. I had a series of reactions: I cried and called friends who I knew would tell me I’m a good person. I deleted my social media apps saying this energy is not good for my mental health. I ranted at a friend about how it’s impossible to be educated on every social justice issue. And I spent several hours writing long detailed explanations of why and how working towards animal’s [sic] rights benefits marginalised people as much as the animals. And then I went to the park and read a fantasy book because I wanted to feel joyful again and that is when the penny dropped…
I had the privilege of turning away from that ugliness if I felt like it. I had the choice to look elsewhere. I could turn off the racism in a way that Black, Indigenous and People of Colour never fully can. I was avoiding confronting the actual issues being discussed and highlighted because I didn’t want to confront my own complicity in white supremacy or racism. Confronting the fact that I’ve benefitted from white supremacy is confronting my own villainy, which I don’t like to acknowledge but I have to because it’s the difference between performative activism (‘look how good I am everyone’) and transformative activism (‘look at all this ugliness inside me that I need to heal’). I have been scared to post anything about this because I don’t know enough about this movement and I don’t want to add further to the hurt and trauma BIPOC are experiencing at the moment by careless words. But I am realising that this is going to continuously be an uncomfortable discussion in order to learn because it brings up the ugliness within ourselves that we don’t want to acknowledge even existing, and we can’t let that discomfort dissuade us from showing up. I’m sorry for avoiding learning about this issue for so long. I’m going to show up and spend more time listening to people of colour. I am also committing to learning how to use my white privilege to help amplify the voices of BIPOC educators. I’m posting the sources I’m starting with in the caption.
I’m sorry for not acknowledging that I’m part of the problem until now. I’m going to correct that. Here to listen to BIPOC voices. #BlackLivesMatter.

While we know that these conversations aren’t always easy or comfortable, they are important to have – both inside and outside of fandom spaces. We can all strive to be better and to listen to marginalized voices. As we at MuggleNet work to challenge our own biases, we encourage you to seek out books and other resources. If you need a place to start, check out this thread on Twitter.

For more on Black Lives Matter, you can visit the organization’s website.

Mary W.

I am a Slytherin, a lifelong fan of Harry Potter, and a member of MuggleNet staff since 2014. In my Muggle life, I am passionate about human rights, and I love to travel around the world and meet new people.