How Tone Policing is Used to Silence Marginalized People

Nicole Cardoza, Anti-Racism Daily

Tone policing is one of many ways that dominant culture “polices” marginalized people. Either subconsciously (informed by one’s unconscious bias) or intentionally, some people use tone policing to deflect from their own inappropriate misconduct and put the person reacting to their inappropriate treatment “back in their place.” This doesn’t just to discredit what the person being tone policed is saying. It implies they are not worthy of time and attention until they play by the rules. Such rules are rooted in sexist and racist ideals of how marginalized people are “supposed to act” in society today.