We’ve got data and timelines and infographics and conversation on topics including: white actors getting Oscars for playing people of color, white savior narratives, roles that garner nominations for Black actors, the shocking lack of nominations for Asian, Latinx and Native American actors and so much more.
There were some moments of anti-racist creativity that were so sublime, I’d like to take a moment to honor them. These are the top ten moments of radical art or artful activism that I encountered in my own little world this year.
“And I thought how interesting is it that America can be this dark star, death star, and also at the same time this incredible shining light.”
“When White America responds to an act of terror on the Black community by withholding the kind of support it has consistently shown itself, is that not racism exactly?”
So maybe my pregnancy path isn’t as simple and straightforward as baby books would have you believe it should be because I’m a poor QPoC with anxiety, but it has been an interesting worthwhile journey so far. I can’t wait until I can take the next step.
“We recognize that not even a Black President will pronounce our truths. We must continue the task of making America uncomfortable about institutional racism. Together, we will re-imagine what is possible and build a system that is designed for Blackness to thrive.”
“But unlike the missing 43 from Ayotzinapa, I was going home. And it’s what I store in my memory each time I read an article or update about the disappeared. I am home. They are not.”
Accepting ambiguity feels like being welcomed home.
One of the first things my mother’s boyfriend noticed upon waking up Thanksgiving Day was that all of the rooms were named after prominent confederate soldiers.
“While it is definitely tragic we still have to march, there is something beautiful and hopeful about the fact that I am fighting for [my mom’s] freedom as much as mine, and we’re both out here so that my nephew, who just turned one, hopefully won’t have to march when he grows up.”
While data is technically — partially — protected from search by the Fourth Amendment, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that our right to privacy is not always honored by law enforcement.
“It’s so important to do what makes you feel centered and strong again as a QTPOC trying to deal with this country right now. It would have taken Herculean levels of self-care to come close to what one Speakeasy Google Hangout did for me last night.”
A Staten Island grand jury decided not to indict Daniel Pantaleo, a white police officer who choked Eric Garner to death during the summer.
When a grand jury failed to indict Michael Brown’s killer, protests broke out across the globe. Members of the Speakeasy, with heavy hearts and revolutionary intentions, were on the front lines.
What do you do when you’ve done everything “right” and you are still mistreated? You take it to the streets. You take your rage and pain and power you make people listen. You burn and you scream and you keep screaming until someone else shows up and offers you a hand.
Fifty years of words I liked reading and you will too! Authors include James Baldwin, bell hooks, Kiese Laymon, Roxane Gay, Ta-Nehisi Coates, Toni Morrison, Bayard Rustin and Dr. Brittany Cooper.
This is an essay about searching for the most effective ways to engage those ambivalent, apathetic, or misinformed people who might otherwise find themselves on the right side of justice.
2. Tension is a productive force.
While the indictment of Wilson is a powder keg issue that could incite riots, it’s not the only end goal of these massive protests. With that said, one way to ensure that the protests will remain peaceful is to put away the military-grade weaponry and indict Darren Wilson: “No Justice, No Peace.”
“The other thing I want to tell you about brothers is that we will lead you to believe that you’re the best thing since sliced bread. But we’re slicing your bread and somebody else’s bread, too… if you allow us to do that.”