Also.Also.Also: White Supremacist Violence and Insurrection

Right. So.

I absolutely could not bring myself to do our “traditional” twice-a-week link roundup. Instead, today we are going to talk about white power and white supremacy.

Yesterday Really Happened.

At 3:40am on Thursday, Congress certified Joe Biden and Kamala Harris’ victory despite the terrorist attack that happened yesterday.

Visualizing a Riot: Where Yesterday’s Attacks on the Capitol Played Out

“Not long after Senator Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, the majority leader, warned his Republican colleagues that their efforts to overturn an American election would send its democracy into a ‘death spiral,’ fear surged through the Senate chamber.” Inside the Capitol, the Sound of the Mob Came First

“With a little distance, January 6 could begin to seem like a bad dream or hallucination—or just another eye-roll-inducing weird moment in a weird presidency. It was not. It was an attempted coup, incited, encouraged, and condoned by the president of the United States. Don’t forget it.” Don’t Let Them Pretend This Didn’t Happen

On Insurrection and White Supremacist Violence.

“Yesterday was yet another example of whiteness’ thievery. Instead of celebrating the Georgia Senate wins of Rev. Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff — victories fueled by the leadership of Black women — our day was discombobulated by legitimate fear. Disrupted by frustration. Whiteness stole my yesterday. I’m determined to not let it steal my today.”

Whiteness Stole From Us Again by Christina Tapper for Zora

“Calls from white, liberal celebrities like Katy Perry to reach out to Trump supporters instead of holding them accountable for voting for white supremacy and the news of a potential Trump book deal are only a couple of examples of the many cultural layers that sustain white supremacy in the United States. Clearly white supremacy will not go away after a single election, and there is still a monumental amount of work to do. It’s time to begin that work.

It’s Not Over: America’s Future of White Supremacist Violence by Nicole Froio for Bitch Media

“I think a lot about the urgency around empathy and building bridges in 2016; the discussions about how white people could reach out to Trump supporters in our family or social groups, and use our relationships to help them understand the harm of that decision. I think there’s merit and worth in talking about that interpersonal layer of things; I have to admit it also felt very distant and silly this summer when the National Guard was shooting at people on the porches of their own homes in broad daylight in my city. I am feeling the same way today watching well-intentioned white folks discuss how the lack of police brutality at the capitol yesterday is an illustration of white privilege. It’s not that that’s incorrect, exactly, but it’s that it’s not the conversation we need to have in this moment; the conversation we are all a part of, whether we wish to be or not, is one about power. The assault on the capitol is an action of white power, not white privilege. The people who enacted and enabled it do have the privilege of experiencing the world differently on an internal level as well as preferable treatment in the outside world; beyond that, however, they have the power to harm and to do so without consequences, and will continue to use it.”

The Quiet Parts Get Louder and Louder by Rachel Kincaid for Autostraddle.

I realize I will sound biased, but I read a lot of articles for today’s link roundup and please believe me when I tell you that Rachel — by correctly naming White Power and not merely white privilege — should be, without any doubt, your read of the day.

In conclusion, less than 48 hours ago, thanks to the leadership of women of color organizers, and Black women leadership in particular, Georgia’s elections changed the course of that state’s history and brought back the smallest ring of hope that maybe we could finally get some movement in our government towards at least protecting — if not not bettering — our communities. No one is talking about it anymore because yesterday a bunch of mainly white people, completely sold and terrified at the prospect of losing their grasp on power, stormed the US Capitol to act in violence. And I realize that this might feel like a small point to end on, but maybe also it’s the entire point.

Within the span of 48 hours we saw what soaring heights sustained collective organizing, lead by Black people and other people of color, can accomplish even when it seems impossible. And then we saw white people retaliate with ferocious violence — nearly fully protected by the state — because their feelings were hurt. And that eclipsed everything else. It always does.

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Carmen Phillips

Carmen is Autostraddle's Editor-in-Chief and a Black Puerto Rican femme/inist writer. She claims many past homes, but left the largest parts of her heart in Detroit, Brooklyn, and Buffalo, NY. There were several years in her early 20s when she earnestly slept with a copy of James Baldwin’s “Fire Next Time” under her pillow. You can find her on twitter, @carmencitaloves.

Carmen has written 711 articles for us.


  1. i kept hearing people talk yesterday about consequences for the right wing. my mom even pointed to them losing the presidency and senate as evidence. but gosh, if that’s lesson that white people take away, 2022 will look alot like 2010 – where the door cracked open for the return of more virulent racist conservatism.

    progressives have to be much bolder, much louder than the obstructionism the right will roll out. and we have to demand the media not give credence to it. it starts with white people remembering that the racists look like us and we have to make sure they fail.

  2. To be black in America is to see the events of yesterday unfold and continue eating your bowl of cereal. Violent white people are neither new or news, in my experience.

    I can say that I am proud to have helped Rev. Dr. Warnock and Jon, sure I’ll debate myself, Ossoff become history making U.S. Senators.

  3. Thank you Carmen. Wednesday was both horrid and the natural outcome of four years of Trump. The joy I felt in the morning though at the outcome in Georgia, and deep appreciation for the decades of organizing that took place to get there, was glorious.

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