I’ve decreed that today is actually THE FUTURE. Well, maybe it started last night, but, oh nevermind. TODAY s the FUTURE. [dramatic music]. First thing this morning, I see that Space X had unveiled a new spacecraft for carrying up to 7 astronauts into space – specifically the International Space Station (ISS). Since the Space Shuttle program was ended, all flights carrying crew to the ISS we on…
Saying things like “we’ve gone from white hoods to business suits” is one way to seem to speak to contemporary racism’s less vocal, yet still insidious nature. But it does a disservice to the public understanding of racism, and in the process undercuts the mission of drawing attention to contemporary racism’s severity.
It wasn’t the KKK that wrote the slave codes. It wasn’t the armed vigilantes who conceived of convict leasing, postemancipation. It wasn’t hooded men who purposefully left black people out of New Deal legislation. Redlining wasn’t conceived at a Klan meeting in rural Georgia. It wasn’t “the real racists” who bulldozed black communities in order to build America’s highway system. The Grand Wizard didn’t run COINTELPRO in order to dismantle the Black Panthers. The men who raped black women hired to clean their homes and care for their children didn’t hide their faces.
The ones in the hoods did commit violent acts of racist terrorism that shouldn’t be overlooked, but they weren’t alone. Everyday citizens participated in and attended lynchings as if they were state fairs, bringing their children and leaving with souvenirs. These spectacles, if not outright endorsed, were silently sanctioned by elected officials and respected members of the community.
It’s easy to focus on the most vicious and dramatic forms of racist violence faced by past generations as the site of “real” racism. If we do, we can also point out the perpetrators of that violence and rightly condemn them for their actions. But we can’t lose sight of the fact that those individuals alone didn’t write America’s racial codes. It’s much harder to talk about how that violence was only reinforcing the system of political, economic and cultural racism that made America possible. That history indicts far more people, both past and present.
Gabriel stopped at a bench, pulled his sleeve over his palm, and began brushing away the snow. He cleared away half the table, then enough space to sit down. He began unloading his backpack. An old laptop computer. Two classic Super Nintendo controllers. A big ball of wires and adaptors. A dozen…
Heartbreaking. You want to will it to be fiction, but it seems to be biographical.
There are many great quotes in this piece, and the whole book seems like it’d be fantastic, but this quote may be my favorite of the limited quotes here:
I will not serve that which I no longer believe, whether it call itself my home, my fatherland, or my church; and I will try to express myself in my art as freely as I can and as wholly as I can, using for my defense the only arms I allow myself to use: silence, exile, and cunning.
When trying to sort through the new feelings and fears of having children as a mature[ish] adult, it never occurred to me that much of that fear and pressure came from an unlikely event. First, your status has changed from someone’s kid to someone’s parent. This status change comes with a sudden sense of empathy and camaraderie with your parents that was impossible before. Second, and this comes…