1960s Playing Card
From Elon James White Tuesday night.
Everything is so disheartening…
"I can get gassed & rubber bulleted every night for the next month and what will you learn that you don’t know right now?" — Elon James White
"The question is: When it’s not our bodies and minds being abused every night will many of you still care? Will you support the work? Our abused and battered bodies can’t be the only canvas you’ll agree to read our concerns on."
Darren Wilson, the officer who murdered Mike Brown, has raised over $11,000 from supporters in less than a day.
This is unacceptable.
A new study from CEPR shows higher employment growth in 2014 in states where the minimum wage went up.
The numbers are confirming what we already knew: higher wages are good for both workers AND businesses.
Text RAISE to 30644 to join our fight for fair wages. http://ift.tt/1k0FUxw
Okay, fellow white people. We need to talk.
Let me tell you a story: I was an angry punk teenager. Not violent, but I did a shitton of trespassing, and I got into a lot of screaming matches with cops.
I have never been arrested.
I have never been violently attacked by police. Hell, I have never been seriously threatened by police.
I am fully aware that I’ve survived to adulthood largely on the benefits of my race.
When you are white in America, you get away with all sorts of shit. Have you read this account from a white dude who actively tried to get himself arrested? You should. It’s telling.
So, if that’s your main frame of reference for dealing with law enforcement, it is really easy to assume that when someone else gets targeted by the police, they must have done something really bad. After all, you know the police aren’t that petty, right? They’re there to help: That’s what TV tells you, what your teachers told you, what your parents told you. “If you’re in trouble, find a police officer. They’ll help.” And, y’know, if you’re white, most of the time, that’s probably true.
When you’re white in America, it is awfully easy to pretend that you don’t live in a country where the nonviolent physical presence of black people, especially black men, is considered sufficient threat to justify use of lethal force. It’s really easy to pretend that laws are enforced equally; that arrest rate has any demographic resemblance to actual crime rates; that the police are there to protect us from the bad guys.
And, I mean, I get that. It’s a lot more comfortable to pretend that safety correlates to virtue than to confront the ugly truth that a system that benefits you very directly does so at the cost of other people’s lives; that what you were taught was the just reward for being a good person is, in fact, the privilege of your skin. That’s a big part of why we work so hard to retcon narratives about how the black people our police murder must have been dangerous, highlight every casual infraction like it’s a killing spree. We are so desperate to believe that the system that feeds us is just.
It doesn’t feel good to acknowledge that stuff. It feels gross. A system we trusted—one we should be able to trust, that should work for the benefit and protection of everyone has made us accomplice to some deeply horrifying shit.
But here’s the thing:
This happened. This is happening. Not recognizing it; stonewalling and insulating ourselves in our little bubbles does not make it go away.
And not acknowledging it, not having asked for it, does not make us any less complicit, or any less responsible for owning and fixing this. We are actively benefitting from a fucked, corrupt, murderous system. That is on us. As it should be.
So educate yourself, get the tools, and start dismantling this fucker. You have the time: after all, no one’s shooting at your kids.
Privilege is the bandwidth to speak up and dismantle because you’re not in fear for your life. And there is no conscionable excuse for failing to use it.
Please, please read the guy trying to get arrested.
"Looting? I thought these were supposed to be nonviolent protests"
I know it’s incredible! People are literally coming out of the woodwork to comment on this photoset to focus on the looting headline with “well yes it is nice they were helping people hit with the tear gas, but stealing is still wrong uwu” as if they’re back to kindergarten morality.
Like everyone who’s gone to boot camp I’ve been tear gassed. They put about 50+ of you in a gas chamber and toss it in. You have to stay there until your rank is allowed to exit. Before that though, you have to say your name, rank, and social security number. You then exit and file into ranks (again) outside and are not allowed at any point to rinse your face or eyes for the entire day.
That right there? Easily the worst part of boot camp. My eyes were literally swollen shut. I was blinded for a good 30 minutes and my chest hurt for days.
I have zero problem and not and ounce of judgement for people raiding a mcdonalds that can easily afford to repair damage for ANYTHING to help ease the shittiness that is being tear gassed. Esp because every one of us in boot were medically sound to deal with tear gas. Children, asthmatics, people prone to panic and anxiety attacks, the elderly as sooo many more are NOT going to handle tear gas well at ALL.
Or that smoke the police use either.
It’s easy to sit there and judge someone from the safety of your home and say things like “it’s just tear gas” or “it can’t be that bad”.
Fuck you. As someone who HAS been gassed, you need to stfu.
I remember all the preparation they did to get us ready for the gas chamber in boot camp. We were taught how to handle ourselves, how to control our breathing, not to touch anything, how to avoid the worst of the gas. But it still didn’t matter. I remember taking in that first breath and feeling like I had just been kicked in the chest. I remember a few guys in my platoon falling down and vomiting. We knew the gas wasn’t as bad on the floor but we were the fifth platoon through and the vomit kept us from bending over more than absolutely necessary. I remember a few guys, guys in peak health training to be infantrymen, breaking ranks and running for the door only to be dragged back in kicking and screaming until they said name, rank and serial. They were expecting it, trained for it, bragging about how it wouldn’t bother them.
I remember standing there with all of the mucus from my nasal cavity on the front of my ACUs and thinking to myself “This is the nonviolent option?”
Covered head to toe and my skin still itching I looked down at the silver wedding band hanging next to my dog tags and realized that the gas had eaten little pits into its surface.
I stood there and thought of all the news reports I had seen over the years. The uprisings and revolutionaries being gassed, the crowds running from men in masks.
That’s the moment I got it, staring at my ruined wedding band, that’s the moment I realized terrorism isn’t about bombs or who is using them. It’s about controlling people through fear. It’s about removing their ability to act reasonably, to make them seem like the monsters. Terrorism is about triggering people to fight or flight then blaming them for not being rational. It’s about power. Remove someone’s power to act with reason, and you remove their humanity.