Identifying as a person of color in solidarity with other people of color says ‘hey, my people have been oppressed by White people, maybe in a different time and space than your people, but we can work in solidarity.’ The identification needs to carry some degree of humility, and a deeper commitment to allyship . The POC umbrella is not an excuse to disavow the ways we benefit from various racial structures and sit idly by as our communities reap advantages from racism towards other people of color.
Black-Asian solidarity in the US, for instance, is hard to find and it will continue to be difficult to build if we continue to use the uncritical ‘POC’ label. Rather, we can use ‘POC’ as a way of reflecting on our different racial histories and building coalitions in our struggles and their difference. POC is a term for building solidarity between movements, not a movement in itself. That distinction is important.