Week 37 — black lives matter

Wasn’t sure whether to send something this week. I do think educating ourselves is important, and should be ongoing. I also don’t think education is enough. It is well past the time for action.

So, instead of reading this, I recommend you support the movement. Donate, volunteer, protest safely if you can, write your MP, etc etc (listen to black folks).


Minneapolis residents commandeered a hotel for homeless
by Max Nesterak

“People are organizing themselves. We take care of each other,” said Rosemary Fister, one of the community members who helped commandeer the hotel.

Lose Your Kin
by Christina Sharpe

One must be willing to say this is abhorrent. One must be willing to be more than uncomfortable. One must be willing to be on the outside. One must refuse to repair a familial rift on the bodies cast out as not kin.

Refuse reconciliation to ongoing brutality. Refuse to feast on the corpse of others. Rend the fabric of the kinship narrative. Imagine otherwise. Remake the world. Some of us have never had any other choice.

We can’t breathe
by Gary Younge

None of this will heal the sick or bring back the dead. But it could help us develop a more sophisticated and nuanced understanding of how race is experienced and how racism operates. For the left it would help end the futile attempts to engage race and class separately. They do not exist in silos but are two interdependent forces, among many, and they are either understood in relation to each other or are misunderstood completely.

There’s One Big Reason Why Police Brutality Is So Common In The US. And That’s The Police Unions.
by Melissa Segura

Like in Minneapolis, police unions across the country have bucked reforms meant to promote transparency and racial equity in law enforcement. Many of these unions have pushed collective bargaining agreements that make it all but impossible for departments to punish, much less fire, officers. These agreements defang civilian review boards and police internal affairs departments, and they even prevent police chiefs from providing meaningful oversight, according to community activists and civil rights lawyers. Meanwhile, the unions have set up legal slush funds to defend officers sued for misconduct.

Systemic racism and police brutality are British problems too
by Kojo Koram

… we should be anything but complacent when it comes to our own structural problems with racism or policing. Institutional racism exists at every level of our criminal justice system, from who gets stopped and searched, to who gets arrested, to who gets charged, to who gets convicted.

Is Prison Necessary? Ruth Wilson Gilmore Might Change Your Mind
by Rachel Kushner

Digging this one out of the archives because it’s v good.

Prison abolition, as a movement, sounds provocative and absolute, but what it is as a practice requires subtler understanding. …Abolition means not just the closing of prisons but the presence, instead, of vital systems of support that many communities lack.

Decades of UK anti-racist organising reminds us to prepare for the long fight ahead
by Leah Cowan

Next week, when white people and corporations alike are bored of publicising their meagre donations and conducting their self-serving check-ins, we will still continue to be black. Our chests will still be at risk of asphyxiation when the timeline returns to stunting and influencing as usual.

Instead of feeling defeated once the news cycle moves on, we can strategically plan for the fight ahead by learning lessons from anti-racist organising that has come before us. Heart-break is devastating and perspective-changing. Together we can evolve healed and equipped for the next encounter.

Dark Matters: On the Surveillance of Blackness
by Simone Browne

…rather than seeing surveillance as something inaugurated by new technologies, such as automated facial recognition or unmanned autonomous vehicles (or drones), to see it as ongoing is to insist that we factor in how racism and antiblackness undergird and sustain the intersecting surveillances of our present order.

What Is an Anti-Racist Reading List For?
by Lauren Michele Jackson

The books are there, they’ve always been there, yet the lists keep coming, bathing us in the pleasure of a recommendation. But that’s the thing about the reading. It has to be done.

Digital Resources for a Movement Against Police Violence by Rhizome

Mapping Our Roles in Social Change Ecosystems by Deepa Iyer

Self Care Toolkit For Your Spiral by Arabelle Sicardi

Templates to write to London galleries and museums (and other resources) by The White Pube