I loved Nickelodeon. I loved that network. Words could not encompass how much I loved them. There were days where I would honestly watch that one network all day as a kid. It was an amazing experience.
When I heard that Nickelodeon purged thousands of people’s complaints on Facebook who were airing grievances about their support of Autism Speaks, I was disappointed. It took me a while to find the words that could show my massive dislike and disgust for that act.
The reason why it took me so long to write this is because, ultimately, I don’t think that it would matter much. Nickelodeon is a powerful network supported by powerful people and organizations and one that, more often than not, has the free choice to silence and invalidate whomever they please.
This fact does not escape me.
It is a theme I have noticed too often in governments, political parties, and corporations: that a voice and their suffering only matter to the powerful when the ends justify the means or fit a narrative that suits them. If it doesn’t, it’s ignored, deleted, invalidated. No matter what though, don’t talk about it! Don’t bring it up! And no matter what, vote for them, trust them, buy their things, and watch their programs!
In closing, Nickelodeon was aware of the complaints and didn’t have to listen. When a powerful company, government, or organization is aware of your suffering and voluntarily doesn’t have to care, they only demonstrate how little awareness actually does to change anything or even appeal to them.
I will forever be grateful for them showing me that acceptance is needed now more than ever, even though it is difficult and hard to obtain.
- The Enormity of Being Black and Autistic: On self-hate and social media — June 25, 2020
- The Patterns of Injustice that Lead to the Loss of Black Lives — June 1, 2020
- A Black Autistic Man Reflects on the Murder of George Floyd — May 28, 2020