A Detroit music festival has been recently slammed by one of its scheduled performers. She claims that the authorities charged white ticket holders more money than minority spectators.
The festival organizers tweeted on Sunday, ‘For the safety of our community, family, elders who received threats from white supremacists,& youth who were subjected to seeing racist comments on our IG pg, Afrofuture Fest has changed our ticketing model to $20 General Admission & suggested donation for nonPOC on Evenbrite.’
The announcement came after a biracial rapper slammed the festival authorities on social media and pulled out of the festival claiming that the whites were being charged twice as much as minorities.
Jillian Graham, stage name Tiny Jag, says that she got to know about the separate price tier for ‘non-people of color’ when her white friend sent her a screenshot of the festival program.
The AfroFuture Fest is happening in the Grosse Pointe Park section of Detroit on August 3. An ‘early bird non-POC ticket’ is $20 while an ‘early bird POC ticket’ cost $10.
Tiny Jag told the Metro Times of Detroit, ‘I was immediately enraged just because I am biracial.’
‘I have family members that would have, under those circumstances, been subjected to something that I would not ever want them to be in … especially not because of anything that I have going on.’
She says she also inquired with festival officials about the prices of the ticket and when they confirmed about the same, she decided to back out.
‘A lot of the songs that I perform are from my first project called Polly — that is my grandmother’s name,’ she says.
‘How do you want me to come to a performance and perform these songs off a mixtape that is titled after this white woman that you would have charged double to get in here?
‘Like, it’s just outrageous from so many different angles.’
The festival organizers wrote on the Eventbrite page, ‘Our ticket structure was built to insure that the most marginalized communities (people of color) are provided with an equitable chance at enjoying events in their own community (Black Detroit),’ the event organizers wrote.
‘Affording joy and pleasure is unfortunately still a privilege in our society for POC and we believe everyone should have access to receiving such.’
But Tiny Jag is not convinced. She says, ‘It’s non-progressive and it’s not solution-focused in my eyes.’
‘It seems almost like it has spite, and unfortunately with spite comes hate, and that’s just not obviously going to be a good direction for us to go if we’re looking for positive change.’
She further explains that in the beginning, she was struggling with the decision of backing out because she was afraid of alienating her fans.
She says, ‘It’s not fun to withdraw out of shows, especially at home, especially in your hometown, and especially when your supporters have been so good to you.’
‘It’s also not fun to do that to my fellow Black women, like that sucks too. It sucks that this is a thing that’s put a wedge here.’
Her decision to back out is now a hot topic on Twitter.
‘Props to Tiny Jag for standing up on principle and pulling out of the performance,’ tweeted fellow rapper Zuby.
‘Want people to recognise that.’
‘Stop letting your White Liberal Allies lie to you, b,’ wrote businessman Hotep Doobs.
‘They are NOT “okay with Paying More”.
‘They front like they do, stop shopping with you altogether and now you outta business.
‘It’s not “bad press”, it’s just a failing business model, beloved.’
But some on Twitter believe that it is necessary to correct an injustice using a number of methods.
‘Gawd this is embarrassing,’ tweeted a biracial woman.
‘My white mom would be PROUD to pay more because she understands the history of economic exploitation of black folk in this country to benefit whiteness & she wants a better future for black folk, including her black kids.’
Danie Steel, an actor based in New York, tweeted: ‘I don’t care what [Tiny Jag] does and a MINORITY group that was formerly enslaved and currently oppressed can’t practice systematic racism on the dominant group.
‘Name ONE place in the world where people of color are practicing structural and systematic racism against the dominant group?’
Source – Daily Mail