The two major themes of justice work I have been forced to spend so much time and effort on are trying to convince White people to understand their privileges, and why capitalism is so wrong and must end. Capitalism is the system that enforces White supremacy and power, enforces racism. Capitalism is economic slavery of those of any race who are of a certain class, i.e. struggling for basic necessities. Which is ironic because the enslavement of people of color, and the theft of land and natural resources from native peoples was and continues to be the foundation of White supremacy and capitalism.
A system that requires money for any purchase or service is morally reprehensible because that denies anyone without money to obtain basic necessities. How have we accepted millions of children going hungry? Millions denied food, housing, education, healthcare? I am so invested in the work of Des Moines Mutual Aid because we are doing what we can to feed the hungry and provide shelter for the houseless.
I’m always looking for other sources that can express this better. Because this message is critical. The following is from the interview “Bree Newsome Bass: ‘Capitalism Has to Collapse’” by Kelly Hayes, Truthout, January 20, 2022.
“So, the goal is to have that resilient plan, that plan for resiliency there and to have those connections and community there as kind of like our base of operation, while we organize and resist and fight.”
As I’ve been saying and doing, those resiliency connections and community are Mutual Aid.
On a personal note, I have an indirect connection to Bree. My friend Todd Zimmer, who trained me to be an Action Leader in the Keystone Pledge of Resistance in 2013 and led the Change the Course training I attended in Louisville, was then working for the Rainforest Action Network. Much of that training focused on nonviolent civil disobedience, direct action planning and execution.
Todd also helped organize the act of civil disobedience by Bree Newsome, who was arrested after she scaled the flagpole to remove the confederate flag at the South Carolina State House June 28, 2015.
The NAACP praised Newsome as a “courageous young woman” and asked for leniency from prosecutors.
“We commend the courage and moral impulse of Ms. Newsome as she stands for justice like many NAACP activists including Henry David Thoreau, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and numerous Americans who have engaged in civil disobedience,” it said. “The NAACP calls on state prosecutors to consider the moral inspiration behind the civil disobedience of this young practitioner of democracy.”
“On June 28, in the early hours of the morning, 30-year-old helmeted activist Bree Newsome scaled the flagpole at the South Carolina State House and cut down the controversial Confederate flag, which was first raised there in 1961, almost 100 years after the Civil War.”Bree Newsome’s Superwoman-style, Confederate flag pole climb was an artistic statement, the conversation, July 1, 2015