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Everytime I Finally Make My Mind Up About Jameela Jamil, More Drama Happens

She does amazing things… but she can also start some shit.

I have a lot of mixed feelings about Jameela Jamil. As a fellow South Asian woman, we actually have a lot in common. There’s something about growing up dark-skinned and being regularly recommended skin bleachers/ told to get out of the sun or you’ll be too dark to marry / etc that makes you immediately drawn to anyone that is unapologetically brown.

But, she also has a habit of stealing other marginalised group’s limelight.

But Jameela is a flawed ally, not an enemy. And I think that’s my key angle when it comes to thinking about her. 

Jameela Jamil’s Got Lived Experience In Her Activism And We Shouldn’t Forget It

Jameela Jamil has lived experience. I do think her being skinny and famous now matters, sure, and people mistrusting her because of that have a right to – but I also think you can’t dismiss the fact that her body dysphoria nearly killed her, at the same time she was in an accident and suffered from disabilities.

Jameela Jamil is a survivor of eating disorders and body dysphoria. In some ways, she’s a success story in the fact that she’s alive at all.

I reckon Jameela genuinely tries to fight the good fight – but I also think her passion for that can lead her to silence others in the process.

This is a criticism she receives a lot, TBH. From accusations of silencing fat Black body acceptance activists, to stealing the spotlight from queer artists, Jameela seems to find herself in places she doesn’t want to be.

And that’s part of why it’s so hard to make up my mind about her – she’s created real waves with her activism, but I can’t ignore the criticisms.

Jameela Jamil Should Not Have A Role On ‘Legendary’, But That Doesn’t Mean She’s A Bad Activist

Of course, the biggest controversy around Jameela Jamil at the moment is her new role in the HBO show ‘Legendary.’

The idea that a cis-straight woman could host a voguing/ballroom show – a genre that was created and championed by Black trans creatives, is pretty fucking shitty. Except turns out she’s not straight, she’s queer.

Now, I’m not LGBT. I don’t have a right to speak about how acceptable her role on this show is. The queer experts on ballroom and vogue, however, do. And they reckon she doesn’t have a right to that role over others.

I don’t think anyone is denying that Jameela has a right to be a part of queer culture – she certainly does, as a queer person.

It’s true however that she has benefited off being a cis-gendered straight-passing woman her whole life, even if she is actually queer. And the plain fact is that other queer people, who have years of experience and history with voguing and ballroom, were passed up for the role despite the fact that they have far more to contribute to it.

These criticisms from the queer community, fans, and haters are necessary. They’re true. But I guess I’m just hesitating to jump on the cancel bandwagon because I know that really, Jameela Jamil is misguided at best and selfish at worst – she’s wrong in some cases, but certainly not out to fuck with minorities.

I see why it’s so hard to make up my mind about her, but I think ultimately she does far more good than harm. And TBH, I rather a flawed ally than no ally.

Image Sources: Twitter. 

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