Contact Me By Email

Contact Me By Email

Atlanta, GA Weather from Weather Underground

Monday, March 07, 2016

The Matter of Black Lives - The New Yorker

Garza, Cullors, and Tometi advocate a horizontal ethic of organizing, which favors democratic inclusion at the grassroots level. Black Lives Matter emerged as a modern extension of Ella Baker’s thinking—a preference for ten thousand candles rather than a single spotlight. In a way, they created the context and the movement created itself. “Really, the genesis of the organization was the people who organized in their cities for the ride to Ferguson,” Garza told me in her office. Those people, she said, “pushed us to create a chapter structure. They wanted to continue to do this work together, and be connected to activists and organizers from across the country.” There are now more than thirty Black Lives Matter chapters in the United States, and one in Toronto. They vary in structure and emphasis, and operate with a great deal of latitude, particularly when it comes to choosing what “actions” to stage. But prospective chapters must submit to a rigorous assessment, by a co√∂rdinator, of the kinds of activism that members have previously engaged in, and they must commit to the organization’s guiding principles. These are laid out in a thirteen-point statement written by the women and Darnell Moore, which calls for, in part, an ideal of unapologetic blackness. “In affirming that black lives matter, we need not qualify our position,” the statement reads.



Yet, although the movement initially addressed the killing of unarmed young black men, the women were equally committed to the rights of working people and to gender and sexual equality. So the statement also espouses inclusivity, because “to love and desire freedom and justice for ourselves is a necessary prerequisite for wanting the same for others.” Garza’s argument for inclusivity is informed by the fact that she—a black queer female married to a trans male—would likely have found herself marginalized not only in the society she hopes to change but also in many of the organizations that are dedicated to changing it. She also dismisses the kind of liberalism that finds honor in nonchalance. “We want to make sure that people are not saying, ‘Well, whatever you are, I don’t care,’ ” she said. “No, I want you to care. I want you to see all of me.”



The Matter of Black Lives - The New Yorker

No comments:

Post a Comment