Posts filed under Op-eds

#BlackLivesMatter: An Open Letter to Black Healers

by Ciarra Ross

For centuries, Black and Brown bodies have been riddled with the physical, mental and emotional symptoms of living in a land ruled by a larger disease—white supremacist patriarchy. As many of us carry the weight of unhealed ancestral trauma and present oppression, Black Americans face some of the highest levels of depression, stress, disease, addiction and anxiety in the nation. As practitioners and creators of holistic healing arts, it is critical that we engage with our health and healing, both personally and collectively. The preservation and growth of our movement(s) depends on it.

Notes on Baltimore

by Damon Mitchell

The situation in Baltimore isn't an "unjustifiable" riot. It is an uprising against the social order of white supremacy. Exiting the Mayflower and lashing out against Native Americans through rape, torture, murder, culture degradation and destruction is what you could call an unjustifiable riot. An unjustifiable riot would be burning down neighborhoods to celebrate your school's NCAA championship win. It's important for Baltimore officials to understand that you cannot make a suggestion of the riots being "unjustifiable" without also questioning the dysfunctional behavior of the Baltimore Police Department.

On Non-Black People Saying Nigga

by Kevin Rigby, Jr.

When non-Black people, but especially other people of color, use the n-word, it isn’t just mean. It is an act of violence, of theft, and of divisiveness so severe as to render any attempts at solidarity moot. The n-word, as Black people use it today, is perhaps our best attempt at demanding our humanity and our right to define ourselves. The word encompasses our history, our current realities, and the love and solidarity we have for one another. It creates a space in which we might articulate ourselves.

Posted on May 13, 2015 and filed under Op-eds.

Metro Detroit Unity & the Tradition of American Mythology

by Eli Day

Mythology means never having to do the hard work of thinking, all while living safely in fantasy. But for black Detroit, rebranding the metro area as a haven of inclusion is little more than cheap varnish. It’s nostalgia for an era that never was. I wish it were otherwise, but the conquered can least afford the price of myth. The point isn’t that unity can never exist alongside tension; it's that unity, by definition, can never take hold where historical rifts remain.

Posted on May 13, 2015 and filed under Op-eds.

Rightful Resistance

by Jonnaé Bryant

We have known struggle. Struggle requires us to continually insist on and affirm our humanity, reveal the ways in which racism covertly informs our institutions, and to envision a world that can offer us hope. We cannot budge. Saying goes “the struggle is real” and we have to persist or we die effortlessly and carelessly in vain. I think of struggle and the blood of ancestors, freedom fighters, and martyrs from every generation. Blood sheds, stains, and leaves us with brown residue. Unequivocally, this is what it means to live, to be black, and to die in America.