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Paromita Naidu: My (hot) take on the accusations against Lizzo

Lizzo by Shawn Miller/Library of Congress
Lizzo, seen holding James Madison's 1813 crystal flute, is now the subject of abuse allegations. Photo by Shawn Miller/Library of Congress.

By Paromita Naidu

My communications, media, and PR experience is deeply embedded in equity, diversity, and inclusion (EDI), as well as community, identity, centering voices, and knowledge translation. It is trauma and history-informed.

My EDI experience is focused on creating systemic change through engagement, communication, storytelling, matriarchal values, and deep learning.

I often combine all of this when analyzing and problem-solving. With this in mind, here is my (hot) take on the recent accusations against Lizzo:

1. Celebrity worship is problematic…because PEOPLE are problematic. That’s the nuance of humanity. Do we leave space for this?

2. Fame and wealth can create power dynamics (economic, social, etc.) that are truly oppressive.

3. When we internalize our trauma and oppression, it can surface as violence against others: “hurt people, hurt people.” Do we have supports in place? Who should and can access them?

4. We have example after example of just how deep patriarchy and racism are embedded in our culture and communities, and “feminists” of all varieties need to unpack and reflect constantly.

5. Have we ensured that the way we/media are framing this accusation is fair to all parties? i.e., we know mainstream media is no stranger to misogynoir.

Paromita Naidu is an immigrant settler, living and working in the ancestral lands of the Qiqéyt First Nation also known as New Westminster, B.C. Published in academic journals, as well as in mainstream media, her voice is sought by those looking for insight into Canadian social issues. This is an edited version of a commentary on her Linkedin profile. Follow Pancouver on Twitter @PancouverMedia. Follow Pancouver on Instagram @PancouverMedia.

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Paromita Naidu

Paromita Naidu is an immigrant settler and writer.

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The Society of We Are Canadians Too created Pancouver to foster greater appreciation for underrepresented artistic communities. A rising tide of understanding lifts all of us.

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We would like to acknowledge that we are gathered on the traditional and unceded territories of the Coast Salish peoples of the xʷməθkwəy̓əm (Musqueam), Skwxwú7mesh (Squamish), and Səl̓ílwətaɬ (Tsleil-Waututh) Nations. With this acknowledgement, we thank the Indigenous peoples who still live on and care for this land.