Becoming A Better Person Requires Holding Yourself Accountable
Start writing a post
Politics and Activism

Becoming A Better Person Requires Holding Yourself Accountable

Growth means acknowledging mistakes, not hiding them.

Becoming A Better Person Requires Holding Yourself Accountable

With the Black Lives Matter movement initiating more conversation on effective allyship, more people have taken to social media to condemn "cancel culture." The main issue with cancel culture is that "canceling" people with a problematic past allows little space for learning and growing. Rather than engaging in cancel culture, many have encouraged allowing people to educate themselves and become better people. While I agree that people should also be encouraged to learn, that doesn't mean that their past mistakes should be dismissed or looked over either. Accountability is necessary for personal growth, and people need to be held responsible for their harmful words and actions. Being "canceled" doesn't allow for growth, but neither does excusing mistakes with the assumption that someone is a different person now.

People who have large platforms and followings especially need to take responsibility for their actions. It's not enough to excuse them with the assumption that they're not the same person now or that they've changed. For example, TikTok user @riridoesthings was recently called out on Twitter by Davon Clark, a former partner, who brought her past racism and biphobia to light. Clark stated that when he reached out to @riridoesthings about her past behavior, she was resistant to apologizing in fear of damaging her image and her platform -- a platform that she, a non-Black person, built from anti-racist activism during the recent surge in the Black Lives Matter movement. Her resistance to holding herself accountable for the sake of keeping up an image is extremely telling. Some have come to her defense with the excuse that she must have changed since then, but her inability to take responsibility for her past actions until she was pressured to do so calls into question how much she has actually changed.

Instances such as this one highlight the importance of personal accountability. If @riridoesthings is unwilling to acknowledge and apologize for her past mistakes because she doesn't want to risk ruining her image, then her motives as an activist appear performative: her priority is herself and not the community she claims to support. If she can't even admit to her past mistakes and her own internalized anti-Blackness, how much could she have grown? How would she have been able to change if she was never willing to acknowledge what, exactly, needed to change? "Canceling" someone isn't productive, but that doesn't mean we should stop holding people accountable for their actions. Growth means acknowledging mistakes, not hiding them.

People's reactions to their past mistakes are always telling of how much they have truly grown. If someone's response to being confronted with their past is to become defensive or make excuses for themselves and deflect responsibility, they clearly haven't been able to hold themselves accountable and understand why their actions were harmful. People are allowed to make mistakes, but becoming a better person means they need to take full responsibility for those mistakes.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
Student Life

Top 10 Reasons My School Rocks!

Why I Chose a Small School Over a Big University.

man in black long sleeve shirt and black pants walking on white concrete pathway

I was asked so many times why I wanted to go to a small school when a big university is so much better. Don't get me wrong, I'm sure a big university is great but I absolutely love going to a small school. I know that I miss out on big sporting events and having people actually know where it is. I can't even count how many times I've been asked where it is and I know they won't know so I just say "somewhere in the middle of Wisconsin." But, I get to know most people at my school and I know my professors very well. Not to mention, being able to walk to the other side of campus in 5 minutes at a casual walking pace. I am so happy I made the decision to go to school where I did. I love my school and these are just a few reasons why.

Keep Reading...Show less
Lots of people sat on the cinema wearing 3D glasses

Ever wonder what your friend meant when they started babbling about you taking their stapler? Or how whenever you ask your friend for a favor they respond with "As You Wish?" Are you looking for new and creative ways to insult your friends?

Well, look no further. Here is a list of 70 of the most quotable movies of all time. Here you will find answers to your questions along with a multitude of other things such as; new insults for your friends, interesting characters, fantastic story lines, and of course quotes to log into your mind for future use.

Keep Reading...Show less
New Year Resolutions

It's 2024! You drank champagne, you wore funny glasses, and you watched the ball drop as you sang the night away with your best friends and family. What comes next you may ask? Sadly you will have to return to the real world full of work and school and paying bills. "Ah! But I have my New Year's Resolutions!"- you may say. But most of them are 100% complete cliches that you won't hold on to. Here is a list of those things you hear all around the world.

Keep Reading...Show less

The Ultimate Birthday: Unveiling the Perfect Day to Celebrate!

Let's be real, the day your birthday falls on could really make or break it.

​different color birthday candles on a cake
Blacksburg Children's Museum

You heard it here first: birthdays in college are some of the best days of your four years. For one day annually, you get to forget about your identity as a stressed, broke, and overworked student, and take the time to celebrate. You can throw your responsibilities for a day, use your one skip in that class you hate, receive kind cards and gifts from loved ones and just enjoy yourself.

Keep Reading...Show less

Unleash Inspiration: 15 Relatable Disney Lyrics!

Leave it to Disney to write lyrics that kids of all ages can relate to.

The 15 most inspiring Disney songs

Disney songs are some of the most relatable and inspiring songs not only because of the lovable characters who sing them, but also because of their well-written song lyrics. While some lyrics make more sense with knowledge of the movie's story line that they were written for, other Disney lyrics are very relatable and inspiring for any listener.

Keep Reading...Show less

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Facebook Comments