I for instance am not connected to an institution, a media company or the cultural elite, the grachtengordel as we Dutch like to call them, and thus cannot actually afford to do what I’m doing right now. Presenting a lecture without being paid for it undermines exactly what for me today is supposed to be about; the nurturing and valuing of the fruits of black intellectual rigor and labor. By inviting me to present without compensation it thus makes it clear that my labor should not be financially rewarded and thus my contribution to the discourse is in the same breath centered and marginalized. Coincidentally more and more reporters have been asking to casually grab a cup of coffee with me based on my writing and tweets. I’ve started rejecting offers like this and hope others follow. If we’re not good enough to hire as editors, journalists or writers we should not be giving out free intellectual labor that others use to fill pages and cash paychecks.
Quinsy Gario in The mold on our tiles (Roetinheteten)