Beset By Racist Internet Trolls? This Volunteer Facebook Group Has Your Back.

"We are a resource for anti-racist images, links, videos, artwork, essays, and voices."

With Internet trolls more numerous and vocal than ever before, a volunteer Facebook group called White Nonsense Roundup has formed in an effort to help people of color address hate speech and other problematic comments made on their personal social media accounts.

Formed last year, White Nonsense Roundup was created by two white women — friends Layla Tromble and Terri Kompton — "to address our inherently racist society and stand up against racism in our own families, work spaces, and communities," according to a Facebook post explaining the need for WNR.

"We believe it is our responsibility to call out white friends, relatives, contacts, speakers, and authors who are contributing to structural racism and harming our friends of color," the post adds, noting that people of color can tag the group on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram so they can provide assistance when needed. "We are a resource for anti-racist images, links, videos, artwork, essays, and voices."



However, instead of just telling others with different viewpoints and opinions off, WNR seeks to educate and enlighten them using "essays, graphics, research, news articles, and personal examples to take apart their arguments."

With 100,000 followers and counting, WNR is also recruiting volunteers to join the effort and help dismantle systemic racism, and frequently shares links to helpful studies and articles. "It's the responsibility of us white folks to do the emotional labor that's required to educate other white folks ― and it shouldn't be required of people of color again and again," Tromble told HuffPost.

In a YouTube interview with activist and blogger Egberto Willies last year, Kompton touched on a similar idea. "We feel like there's a need for white people to address our own, like, we need to be out there having difficult conversation about race, about systemic racism, and really calling each other out when that comes up in social media," she explained.

An Ipsos poll from earlier this month found that while most Americans oppose white nationalism and white supremacy, many seem to support viewpoints held by white supremacist groups. For example, though 80 percent of respondents strongly agreed that all races should be treated equally, 39 percent of respondents either strongly agreed or somewhat agreed that white people are currently under attack in this country.

Despite these somewhat troubling recent findings, WNR boasts many success stories. As a woman of color named Michelle T. wrote in a recent newsletter, per HuffPost, "After a white dude follower commented something racist on a post I wrote about white supremacy, I tagged White Nonsense Roundup. A volunteer rounded him up with incisive, straightforward, brutal truth. It was exactly what I wanted to say, but did not have the emotional energy to."

WNR has nearly 60 volunteers and counting, and its importance shouldn't be underestimated. "In a lot of ways, platforms like Twitter and Facebook are the civic commons of this time," Tromble told HuffPost. "It's where a lot of people are getting their information from. Engaging in these conversations on social media is important because it is where people form their opinions."

Cover image via by freestocks.org on Unsplash.

More From A Plus

GET SOME POSITIVITY IN YOUR INBOX

Subscribe to our newsletter and get the latest news and exclusive updates.