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Esoterica

tranqualizer
So one year after Occupy was launched, while lots of exciting media was generated, massive resources were spent, a great number of people were supposedly politicized and the world started to listen to the concept of the %99, the same number of black, brown, poor, disabled and migrant folks are being incarcerated, policed, and deported in the US. The racist and classist Sit-lie laws, gang injunctions and Stop and Frisk ordinances still rage on and we are still being pushed out of our communities of color by the forces of gentriFUKation and poverty. So, I wonder, how have these political gentrifyers changed things for black and brown and poor people? Not at all, actually, but then again, Occupy was never really for us.

Occupy Was Never 4 Me - 1 yr later, tiny aka Lisa Gray-Garcia (via tranqualizer)

(via eshusplayground)

blue-author

Anonymous asked: You are straight up crazy if you think that just because you’re white, the cops are on your side.

payslipgig:

alexandraerin:

In an absolute sense, of course they’re not.

But here’s the important thing: when they murdered Rekia Boyd, they were on my side. When they tortured Raul Rosas to death, they were doing that to keep me safe. When they broke down the door to Kenneth Chamberlain’s house and killed him, they were doing that for me.

When they protected George Zimmerman, they were doing so with the understanding that the law’s purpose is to keep me safe from people like Trayvon, not the other way around.

These things are done on our behalf. 

The cops are doing this for us.

Like the man said, “Nobody panics when things go according to plan, even if the plan is horrifying.”

Take all the people of color who have been murdered by police, security guards, or vigilantes in the past 45 days and imagine they were white. What would happen?  How would we react? We would panic. There would be revolution. We’d take it as a sign that the system is broken.

But we haven’t, so far. These deaths aren’t anything new or unusual. It didn’t suddenly happen that a cop can gun down an unarmed innocent citizen and win a good conduct award for it. This is the system, and we’ve accepted it because we’re not the ones in the cross hair and that made it easy to ignore most of the cases and write off or forget the ones we couldn’t help hearing about.

And here’s the point where I get to and delete this message without posting it and start over… I’ve done that two or three times.

Because I don’t know what to do about this. I don’t know how to meaningfully revoke my consent for the things that are done in my name, the senseless things that are done for no actual practical reason in the name of keeping me safe. 

But it’s something we need to figure out.

Case in point: Occuply Wallstreet.  When the police suddenly were not on the side of the upper/middle class white kids protesting (though the police were still working for white people, just CEOs and politicians in specific) tumblr exploded.  All of the sudden, this was significant shit to be aware of and horrified by.  But the same and far, far more has been happening to people of color for generations.

It wasn’t new, it just wasn’t according to plan.  Thus, people reacted with shock and confusion because police brutality to PoC is expected, but police brutality affecting well-off white folks is scary.  

curiouslycool:

Before I post more photos…

Let’s talk about the WHITE DERAILING ASSHOLES AT THE RALLY.

THIS RALLY WAS ABOUT JUSTICE FOR TRAYVON MARTIN,

JUSTICE FOR THE BLACK AND BROWN BODIES PILING UP IN OUR STREETS.

THIS RALLY WAS ABOUT RACIAL PROFILING AND THE DISCRIMINATION PEOPLE OF COLOR FACE.

What the fuck is wrong with you and what possessed you to come down to Union Square and talk about YOURSELVES.

I’m looking at YOU Occupy Wall Street.

I’M LOOKING AT YOU AND YOUR HUGE FUCKING BANNER AND YOUR FAKE ASS MIC CHECKS, TRYNA GET US TO TALK ABOUT YOUR UPCOMING EVENTS.

Fuck you.

FUCK YOU.

I’m glad you didn’t succeed and people sideeyed the shit out of you.

A Black child is DEAD.
His mother’s voice broke as she thanked us for bringing her tragic loss into the spotlight.

HOW DARE YOU COME OUT HERE AND USE A BLACK CHILD’S DEATH TO PROMOTE YOUR CAUSE, A CAUSE THAT HAS NEVER INCLUDED PEOPLE OF COLOR.

This is about capitalism?

This is about classism?

WHY THE FUCK DON’T YOU TALK ABOUT WHO’S AT THE BOTTOM OF THE SOCIOECONOMIC LADDER AT YOUR EVENTS?

Fuck yall.

Miss me with that bull.

And you motherfuckers wonder why we ain’t never down there picketing with you.

I turned down an offer of help from OccupyChicago today. This would be why I didn’t want them to have even a toe hold.

(via crankycritic-deactivated2012061)

Oh white people… ::smh::

poemsofthedead:

poemsofthedead:

LOL. People think it’s “sarcasm” when I point blank, and in bold text, say that it’s racism to use the word occupy to describe your movement while you are standing on occupied land and indigenous folks have been telling you since the first day that we don’t find it cute???

Really? It’s that confusing?

Nah, I’m dead serious.

I don’t trust you crackers for shit, and if you want me to take you serious, you better come with something better than calling me names and telling me you’ve never heard this critique before.

Oh, and hey, this is just a handful of the links that come up when you search “indigenous criticism of occupy wall street”*:

An Open Letter to Occupy Wall Street by John Paul Montano

Indians Counter ‘Occupy Wall Street’ with ‘Decolonize Wall Street’ via The Buffalo Post

OCCUPY WALL STREET: The Game of Colonialism and further nationalism to be decolonized from the “Left” by Jessica Yee

Decolonization and Occupy Wall Street by Robert Desjarlait

*TW: there are also lots of links of white people invested in OccupyShit who have written critiques of the critiques, most of which are basically calling these fine indigenous people lots of unsavory names, the “nicest” of which are accusations of ignorance. Because white people can’t stand to be told that they ain’t right and should actually change how they think & do when it is harming POC.

As a reminder of context (cuz this is an old post), this was after I said something about OccupyShit being racist and explicitly pointed out that the fact that they keep using the word “occupy” despite critiques from day one about it - and a bunch of white people came in all defensive about how OccupyShit is doing more than I am doing sitting at my computer and they don’t know what I’m even talking about saying there are critiques about the name. Well, I was critiquing the name and it’s not that complex to understand why it’s a problem. But I said “Google it” and they claimed that they had Googled it before asking, which clearly is a lie because the links above are from the first page of search engine results.

(via poemsofthedead-deactivated20120)

Oh white people… ::smh::

poemsofthedead:

LOL. People think it’s “sarcasm” when I point blank, and in bold text, say that it’s racism to use the word occupy to describe your movement while you are standing on occupied land and indigenous folks have been telling you since the first day that we don’t find it cute???

Really? It’s that confusing?

Nah, I’m dead serious.

I don’t trust you crackers for shit, and if you want me to take you serious, you better come with something better than calling me names and telling me you’ve never heard this critique before.

Oh, and hey, this is just a handful of the links that come up when you search “indigenous criticism of occupy wall street”*:

An Open Letter to Occupy Wall Street by John Paul Montano

Indians Counter ‘Occupy Wall Street’ with ‘Decolonize Wall Street’ via The Buffalo Post

OCCUPY WALL STREET: The Game of Colonialism and further nationalism to be decolonized from the “Left” by Jessica Yee

Decolonization and Occupy Wall Street by Robert Desjarlait

*TW: there are also lots of links of white people invested in OccupyShit who have written critiques of the critiques, most of which are basically calling these fine indigenous people lots of unsavory names, the “nicest” of which are accusations of ignorance. Because white people can’t stand to be told that they ain’t right and should actually change how they think & do when it is harming POC.

(via poemsofthedead-deactivated20120)

inthesetimes.com

Harlem Gives #Occupy Tense Reception

ladyatheist:

There are two parts of the article that need to be highlighted.

First:

It seemed as though the protesters confidently marched into Harlem without taking into account the city’s tense race relations, particularly in Harlem, which has been undergoing a radical demographic shift for the past decade, or so, leaving black households sometimes in the minority. 

But where the protesters stood, 6 in 10 residents are black, and many have long witnessed the president weather attacks, some valid, but others rooted in ugly, undeniable racism (see: Show Me Your Birth Certificate).

There was little room for nuanced debate at the Apollo protest, and to many Harlemites, it appeared as though a bunch of people, most of them white, had shown up simply to give the first black president a hard time. The Obama-as-Hitler banner seemed to seal the deal. After all, calling one’s political opponent “Hitler” doesn’t really leave much room for intelligent debate.

Second:

[…] whenever America congratulates itself on becoming post-racial, we should all enjoy a good, collective laugh. There are deep, profound racial injustices in this country, which ironically, OWS was hoping to discuss at the protest. Stop And Frisk, widespread unemployment in the black community, and the subprime disaster are all byproducts of institutional racism.

However, when a majority-white group plans to march into Harlem, site of arguably the most important black cultural renaissance in US history, and “educate” its citizens about the poor decisions of the first black president, there needs to be some community outreach done beforehand. Otherwise, there’s zero room for discussion, the whole thing dissolves into a screamfest, and if the LaRouchies show up, man, it’s over.

Side-note: Accusations of the white, male hijacking of Occupy have been prevalent for a while, and the issue is complicated. The media did a very poor job of highlighting a variety of OWS voices, particular those of women of color, leading many to believe there simply aren’t Occupiers of different races, which is patently false. However, as one long-time OWS supporter told me last night, white men do have a habit of deeming themselves facilitators at Occupy meet-ups, which gives the false impression that OWS is led by white men simply because, in that moment, a white man chose to seize power and lead. In his words, it’s “like witnessing the mindset behind colonialism.”

Second, there is a direct correlation between Occupy’s popularity and the timeline of Obama’s reelection bid. Everyone loves dissenters when they don’t threaten the system’s normal state, but as we near election time, Occupy’s presence at Obama events will be less a novelty and more a very real threat, especially in the minds of diehard Obama supporters (in Nov 2011, black voters gave Obama a 91 percent approval rating).

Last night seemed a failure of imagination: failure on the part of Occupy for underestimating tense race relations and Obama fervor leading up to the re-election, and failure on the part of some Harlem residents to imagine that maybe - just maybe - Obama hasn’t made stellar decisions at every turn.

I strongly suggest that you take the time to read the whole article. It brings up some good points.

You know I don’t understand this idea that people have of Obama as New Jesus or this idea that people who support can’t also be aware of where he falls short. That’s before we get into the Obama as Hitler thing which is frankly so pig ignorant I don’t quite know how to discuss. That’s not just a misstep on the part of OWS, it’s a complete rejection of reality, history & social context. Just saying. Here’s the thing, President Obama is a human being working within an incredibly flawed system. Is he perfect? NO! Is he likely to be a better choice for many people than any of the Republican candidates? Yes. I don’t always agree with him, but I am aware that I’d rather see him in office than Santorum, Gingrich, Romney or Paul. I think many of Obama’s supporters are looking at their options & whether they really like all of his policies or not, they are willing to compromise for the greater good. At least that’s where I stand. As for OWS? Y’all keep tilting at that windmill if you want to, personally I’m not even going to pretend OWS is about improving my life or the lives of people like me.

(via womanistgamergirl)

indiancountrytodaymedianetwork.com

Occupy Wall Street Stirs Up Radical Ideas in Indian Country

adailyriot:

The Occupy Wall Street (OWS) movement may be the most significant social movement in the U.S. since the pre–Iraq War protests in 2002, which saw tens of thousands of people take to the streets in some cities. But OWS has more in common with the activism of the civil rights era than the antiwar protests because it exposes the imbalances of American society, and while Native people are acutely aware of those imbalances, many of them are questioning the terms of the OWS debate—they wonder, for example, what it really means to “occupy” Wall Street, or any place else in America for that matter?

As many Native bloggers and activists have pointed out, Wall Street is already occupied—it was (and is) the territory of the Lenape and other First Nations. That’s why some Native activists see decolonization as a more appropriate framework for any discussion of the current economic crisis. This has been expressed in many ways throughout Indian country. In Albuquerque, the OWS movement based on the campus of the University of New Mexico that had been calling itself “Occupy Burque” voted to adopt a new name: (Un)Occupy Albuquerque, linking corporate greed to the theft of Native land.

In early October, the Albuquerque (un)occupation movement enjoyed vigorous participation by the community, fueled in large part by energetic students skilled in the art of street activism. A blogger on the website DailyKos.com identified only as “evergreen2” noted that New Mexico, which is one of the most diverse states in the nation and is one of only four U.S. states with a majority-minority population—that is, less than 50 percent white—has a “very strong and vocal indigenous population” for whom the term occupy is problematic: “For New Mexico’s indigenous people, Occupy means 500 years of forced occupation of their lands, resources, cultures, power and voices by the imperial powers of both Spain and the United States. A big chunk of the 99 percent has been served pretty well by that arrangement. A smaller chunk hasn’t.”

The message is clear: While the OWS movement decries the corporate state which for decades has politically and economically disenfranchised the bottom 99 percent, there are some stunning differences among those 99-percenters. Alyosha Goldstein, an associate professor of American Studies at the University of New Mexico, argues in a recent article published on Counterpunch.org that the OWS movement would do well to

LO RES FEA Photo UnOccupy HI RES IndigenousPPlsDay 2011 270x350 Occupy Wall Street Stirs Up Radical Ideas in Indian Country

Indigenous People’s Resistance Day 2011

remember the messages of the 1968 Poor People’s Campaign—that poverty and inequality were directly related to conditions of colonialism, racism and militarism. The coalitions that formed within a diverse spectrum of the poor and people of color coalesced during a six-week encampment in Washington, D.C. that became known as Resurrection City. Goldstein writes that “the disparate circumstances that motivated people to participate in the campaign produced multiple perspectives that could not be adequately expressed in a single set of demands—something that perhaps The New York Times today would deride as a ‘lack of clear messaging.’ But the form of the campaign itself—with its multiple contingents and numerous demands—underscored the irreducibility of its parts to a unified whole.”

The legacies of slavery, war and international trade agreements that favor corporations over people reverberates today in the widespread social displacement and poverty for African Americans, Mexican Americans and the ever-growing numbers of other ethnic minority populations. For them, the American Dream has turned out to be more mythology than reality. And the same is true for American Indians, and has been for more than 500 years now. Any American Dream—real or imagined—built on Indian lands obtained through violence is a constant reminder of the historical reality of colonialism and, from an indigenous perspective, shifts the terms of the OWS debate.

Put another way, perhaps OWS isn’t radical enough. Journalist and best-selling author Christopher Hedges, for example, believes that liberals who once stood for values like civil rights and equality for all have been co-opted by the corporate state “by having refused to question the utopian promises of unfettered capitalism and globalization and by condemning those who did.”

Hedges argued in a column on TruthOut.com that “hope in this age of bankrupt capitalism comes with the return of the language of class conflict and rebellion, language that has been purged from the lexicon of the liberal class, language that defines this new movement. This does not mean we have to agree with Karl Marx, who advocated violence and whose worship of the state as a utopian mechanism led to another form of enslavement of the working class, but we have to learn again to speak in the vocabulary Marx employed.”

Invoking the M word is enough to send most liberals scurrying, but for others it heralds a welcome return to the radical politics of the civil rights era. For Indian country (and arguably all Indigenous Peoples) Marxism can send a mixed and confusing message because of varying interpretations of Marx’s writings. His early work is often criticized as being Eurocentric and espousing a view of the inevitability of the development of the nationalist state, which assumes the necessary (if unfortunate) subjugation of Indigenous Peoples. However, his later work, after he had done an in-depth study of Haudenosaunee societies, reflects his admiration for American Indian cultures and their superiority to the industrialized West. For Marx, capitalism’s biggest threat was its obsession with turning land into private property, a conversion the West accelerated by dispossessing Indians of their lands. Since colonialism paved the way for capitalism to flourish in the New World, a Marxist critique of capitalism can be instructive for Native communities. Pointing out that colonialism made possible the institutions of today’s corrupt capitalist system naturally leads to a talk of decolonization. In the Bay Area, Native activists and intellectuals have seized upon this as part of their campaign to Decolonize Oakland.

But decolonization is not part of the OWS movement, which is why Native people must demand that they are included in this public dialogue now swirling around OWS. Decolonization is inevitably connected with capitalist exploitation, especially when Native lands are at stake. The Keystone XL Pipeline is a recent example of Indigenous Peoples alerting the public at large to problems created by capitalism in the context of colonial domination, and in a way that was significant for everyone concerned. In early November, people in Vancouver, British Columbia, led by First Nations people, marched in a protest against the Kerr-Sulphurets-Mitchell mine on the Unuk River in Canada. One banner read defend the land—frack capitalism, a reference to the environmental risks posed by the mining practice of fracking. Also in November, a summit of the Asian-Pacific Economic Cooperation in Hawaii sparked large protests and counter-summit meetings held by Native Hawaiian intellectuals and academics to address the abuses of transnational trade agreements in Pacific Rim and Asian nations and their impacts on indigenous populations. Many Kanaka Maoli (Native Hawaiians) raised the issue of U.S.’s illegal annexation of the Hawaiian Islands and demanded that lands be given back.

While it’s unlikely that Hawaii will be returned to the Kanaka Maoli and the Kingdom of Hawaii restored anytime soon, such demands from Indigenous Peoples demonstrate their tenacity and commitment to justice in a capitalist world build on colonial exploitation. If OWS aspires to bring on truly radical change, it should take a cue from Indigenous Peoples and rethink the idea of occupation altogether.




(via rematiration-deactivated2013111)

deluxvivens:

So after that ridiculous post from animals talking in all caps i figured i should post this vid of one of the creators of the decolonize oakland name change proposal speaking her piece about it.

 Transcript

‎”I was one of the proposers/ i want to thank u all for coming out /and i want you all to recognize/ that weather or not u voted for this proposal/ it was important for everybody to be down here /the reason why wanted the name change/ is because were tired of being alienated/ were tired of being marginalized/ were tired of being told/ that we don’t have a place down here/ this place belongs to us /everyone/ we been fighting for this shit/ for 520 years /just because u started yesterday /doesn’t invalidated the work that has been done /this place belongs to all of us/ and wether u been down here day/ or whether u just got down here/ the reality is this conservation is that got people to come out and be part of of occupy/ whether or not u feel like motherfuckesr just got on the scene/ they want to be part of this shit to
so figure out what the fuck y’all want/ yal want motherfuckers/ to tome out here and be with y’all then u better start listening to the motherfucking people/ the reality is that wo this motherfucking people/ y’all wouldn’t have half of the muthafuckas on the general strike on the 12/ be about this shit /I LOVE U ALL/ AND IM EXPECTING U ALL TO WIN .”

(via deluxvivens-deactivated20130417)

womanistgamergirl

ladyatheist:

Every time I point out a flaw in #ows and mention that it is one of the many reasons I just can’t bring myself to fully support it, someone always says “well, one person isn’t reflective of the whole movement”. This is one case where I have to call bullshit. The problems of sexism, racism, and privilege denial within the movement are way too rampant to be attributed to “just a few people”. What also bothers me is the fact that very little is being done to address and/or change that. If anything, most people are just making excuses for it. There is a major case of “I agree with the movement therefore it is above criticism” going on in #ows.

daniellemertina

OWS & their relationship with blackness

daniellemertina:

I am conflicted about the OWS movement. I am considering joining the one on my campus. I think that it will be more inclusive than many of the other protests, mainly because a lot of the people leading it ARE people of color. Black Student Union is even getting involved.

But then I read stuff written by people involved in more of the broad OWS movements.

And I get frustrated that blacks are constantly evoked when it comes to OWS. I just read an article that compared people saying that OWS protestors don’t have jobs because they have “tattoos, gouged ears, and dirty dreadlocks” to the concept that “used to” exist about how black people are inferior. I say USED TO in quotations because I don’t believe that theory is behind us by any means.

I don’t know why black people need to be compared to tattoos and “dirty dreadlocks” (which I am sure relates to white people who appropriate dreadlocks to feel cool). Blackness is immutable. I was born black. You decide to do those other things. A black person who tries their very best to assimilate into middle class white culture can’t do it based on their skin complexion. Those white people are purposely choosing to dissimulate from middle class white culture.

I find it problematic that we’re going to categorize chosen marginalization and forcible marginalization on the same level. Plus, “dirty” dreadlocks or not you still have white privilege. All you do is get rid of them and ta da.

But then on the other hand, OWS will talk on and on about economic inequality without one single wink to institutionalized racism. How in the world can you comprehensively discuss poverty without talking about racism?

That’s that post racial stuff.

So I don’t know.