Second :I don’t know. But I have some feelings
Part two in a series that started here. And will continue as I feel like it
My mom keeps reminding me of papers she sometimes forgets she is a citizen and talks about threats of deportation in the present tense.She calls me about my facebook statuses “ Be careful they don’t protect people like us”Tomorrow a bill will be signed making special lists of people who will be regulated and walls will be built and people have thoughts and .
I have memories .
I don’t hear deportation and proceedings as a theoretical abstract. It’s real for me .
I feel it. It is a trauma 12 years is the kind of semi healing
I remember soliciting letters, of submitting report cards or phone calls and gut wrenching sobs .I know that some people are about to join me in a fraternity that frankly I never wanted to be in and would love to not induct anybody else into.
I remember being silent in hopes that looking “good” would bring favor or help. It didn’t .
So I’m gonna get a little loud because I have memories and I know someone needs it tonight
So here’s what i got for now as really important :
Focus on us not them
You don’t grow gardens just to kill bugs. you want fruits,vegetables,flowers . Think of politics this way . The doctors of decorum will constantly try to tell you what’s civil or what “we “ believe. Ask who the fuck they are talkinga bout when they say we. If you have to fight to defend your ability to grow never let anyone shame you for that.
Forget Passive Aggressive. Be aggressive. Be mad . Have real beef
This makes STRANGE bedfellows. The fact that we deeply despise the same person is not the same as common goals . Don’t force it don’t hide it. Admit it . Throw hands . Be real. THEN get together on common ground. I got a couple people I’d fight at MSG for fun and for free but we agree on abortion/SNAP/libraries. That’s good enough
Sacrifice no one
Everyone is learning this the hard way , but big barks then rolling over to show your belly ( looks at Democrats) does nothing. Be willing to lose. Principle matters . Sarah Kendzior said it best . You dont get rewarded for rolling over you get punished. If they gonna be mad anyway let em be mad while you keep your dignity.
Figure out what you need,want, need to prepare.
One of the most common properties of bullies, cult leaders, dictators and also general assholes is making you feel you are lacking when you aren’t. They then like infect you with the belief that there isn’t enough to go around.One, so that you don’t notice how much they are stealing/taking up and two,so you don’t talk to people about finding ways of life that don’t center their whims. Dream big . Budget well then
GIVE IT AWAY ! LIKE IT IS GOING OUT OF STYLE
SUPPORT YOUR LOCAL LIBRARY Donate. Take people out of debt. Pay it forward. Fund rafts of birth control. Make it rain on your local library, Adopt your school. Give to national parks. The aesthetic will always be contrasting the opulence and richness of the “deserved” to the squalor of the undeserved. The goal will be to scare you and all of us with what could happen if we fall out of line. I’m being utterly hopeful with the heart of a child but if we take care of each other , it makes it harder to sell those lies. Take some credit but also do a good bit of it anonymously. Make it look like they don’t understand the country.
Books .Art . Intellect.
Get deeply into SOMETHING anything,you can make and create. Learn it’s history . Share it. Use your library systems . Go to museums. Remember the NEA and NEH announcements /threats/whine propoganda came after no celebrities would join. They will tell you art is not of the people, it’s “unaffordable”. Please pad the everliving FUCK out of these numbers. Research them, respect them
PRESERVE THE DATA
Keep journals, save websites, back up hard drives . Take notice . If people and things you care about suddenly want you to have a whole bunch of info … they’re scared . Knowledge will be challenged at all points.
Lose the Info
Sometimes taking care of each other will involve playing the hell dumb. If something don’t smell right ? If somebody you don’t know wants all this info on someone you do know. ain’t none of their business. Ask why like it’s going out of style.
People have been here in this space for years/centuries. Respect that.
People been marching and getting surveilled and since slave catching days. People been scared and terrified and talking about it forever . Mala said it best “ I learned from Panthers and Lords” Stop trying to write them out . Stop trying to pretend they aren’t here. And if they don’t have the bandwith to teach you respect that. Living under the stress you are just now feeling is ACTIVELY killing them. which brings me to…
FOR THE LOVE OF GOD LOOK AT HOW YOU TREAT PEOPLE CLOSE TO YOU AND WHAT YOU ALLOW CLOSE TO YOU AND NOT JUST AS PROPS
Here’s where I lose people. Everybody and their momma including black folks owes black women apologies , and some specific black women checks. Just straight up checks . I have archives and I am not alone of shit I said in 2007 that people are crying about in 2017 where THE SAME PEOPLE laughed at me. it is exhausting tiring
and some of the worst offenders are other black women/activists/and the wokey mc woke brigade.
If you find yourself favoriting everything by someone and you don’t say their name when money or prestige comes up? You are part of the problem
If the only thinkers you like are camera ready or credential high you might be part of the problem.
If your respect comes from how good the selfie or styling i
If your discussions about certain topics are more about what you need to as x than what the people living through it are talking about
Do you get where I’m going with this because
Handle your shit and admit when you don’t know shit
If you want to know what will make the biggest difference between us and the goosteeping mothball hair cuts and soul hoovered death eaters passing as governance.
It will be admitting and accepting faults ,flaws, specialties, and allowing for the space that can bring. Don’t bluster , don’t take up air time. admit you have no clue , point to someone who does.
What you do know ? What you are willing to step up and do . Do it well. Stand on your work. forget their lies, they’ll do it like they draw air. Make what we need and do inviting by making it full of the love they can’t have. and finally
Not nice. Not civil. Not stupid or a push over , but kind, Mindful deliberate , caring. Self aware. People are in terrible states right now, some have never left them. People are triggered, People are overestimating and underestimating themselves . They are being human. Humanity is hard and messy and this is hurting people. Not in the grandstandy speeches way . but in the a kindergartner is going to cry their eyes out and wonder what about them is so bad they can’t have a parent or a home
A 19 year old is more worried about if they’ll be deported than a term paper
and yes this 32 year old will probably sob her god damn guts out randomly tomorrow/today.
It’s not over , I have not yet begun to fight but they have just begun to hurt and with what little I have with all I can muster . I’m gonna do something about it.
I hope you will too.