A Source Bank For Talking To Your Friends And Relatives About Racism

If you’re tired of arguing about Confederate Monuments, just link to this article instead.

It’s time to have those uncomfortable conversations with your family and friends. I know relationships were destroyed talking to loved ones about Black Lives Matter and also the election. 
But people are dying, and they’ve been dying, at the hands of white supremacy. And it’s kind of 50 shades of messed up that it took the death of a white woman for people to care.

Too often these conversations take place on Facebook. With people whose opinions you wish you never knew. You post a link about taking down Confederate monuments, and you hear the same arguments:

“Why erase history?”

Facebook is a terrible platform for this type of conversation. There is way too much grandstanding, because it is incredibly public, and tensions rise because you’re looking at a computer screen and therefore see the commenter as the incarnation of the ideas they are expressing, and not a human being. Very few people change their minds from Facebook arguments, and they get nasty pretty quickly.

But these things are worth discussing. These conversations need to be had. Lately, after having these conversations a million times since Charlottesville, I’ve been lacking the emotional energy to regurgitate and awaken that rage again on whim to engage with a random person on Facebook. But engaging is important. And if it’s uncomfortable for me to occupy that space, that is the reality that POC live in every day. And they don’t have the choice to disengage form that reality. So talk to your racist relatives and friends. It’s not black people’s job to convince people not to be white supremacists. It’s not their job to convince other people of their humanity on cue. White people need to talk to white people and have these conversations.

But if you get tired of having the same conversation of why erase history, or if you just straight up don’t have hours of free time to argue with racists on Facebook, I hear that. So send them this link.

This is really a source compilation that can be used for addressing these issues with your loved ones.

Topic: Confederate Monuments

Key takeaway points:

  • Monuments are about what a country wants to celebrate and the values it hopes to preserve for our future. They are about a narrative and about beliefs, not about history. They are about what’s important to a country. A significant majority of Confederate monuments were not actually even erected right after the Civil War: they were erected by White Supremacists around the time of the Jim Crow laws, and then more were erected by White Supremacists in response to desegregation in the 1960s. They are and have been historic symbols of oppression and white supremacy.
  • That narrative is a history, but whose history? The people in those monuments fought a war so they could literally enslave black people. Those statues have blood on their hands.

Reference Links

‘The South lost the war. Over a century later, we’re still fighting one — but it has nothing to do with states’ rights or Southern pride. It is about racism, intolerance, and hatred. And at the center of it all are symbols that, despite the well-intended Southern narratives that have failed to reframe them as anything else, are the strongest representation of racism in our country’s history.’

‘A timeline of the genesis of the Confederate sites shows two notable spikes. One comes around the turn of the 20th century, just after Plessy v. Ferguson, and just as many Southern states were establishing repressive race laws. The second runs from the mid-1950s to the mid-1960s — the peak of the civil-rights movement. In other words, the erection of Confederate monuments has been a way to perform cultural resistance to black equality.’

‘Of the 109 monuments, more than a third — 39 — were built between 1950 and 1970. The SPLC report also found two periods in which there was a spike in the construction of Confederate monuments. The first [increase in Confederate monument construction] came in the early 1900s, shortly after Plessy v. Ferguson, right around the founding of the NAACP, and during a national push to outlaw lynching. The other began shortly after Brown v. Board of Education and federal desegregation efforts in the 1960s.’

‘[After Dylan Roof massacred nine black churchgoers in cold blood last year.] In what seemed like an instant, the South’s 150-year reverence for the Confederacy was shaken. Public officials responded to the national mourning and outcry by removing prominent public displays of its most recognizable symbol.

It became a moment of deep reflection for a region where the Confederate flag is viewed by many white Southerners as an emblem of their heritage and regional pride despite its association with slavery, Jim Crow and the violent resistance to the civil rights movement in the 1950s and 1960s.

The moment came amid a period of growing alarm about the vast racial disparities in our country, seen most vividly in the deaths of unarmed African Americans at the hands of police. ‘

Also from the above story:

‘Critics may say removing a flag or monument, renaming a military base or school, or ending a state holiday is tantamount to “erasing history.” In fact, across the country, Confederate flag supporters have held more than 350 rallies since the Charleston attack.

But the argument that the Confederate flag and other displays represent “heritage, not hate” ignores the near-universal heritage of African Americans whose ancestors were enslaved by the millions in the South. It trivializes their pain, their history and their concerns about racism — whether it’s the racism of the past or that of today.

And it conceals the true history of the Confederate States of America and the seven decades of Jim Crow segregation and oppression that followed the Reconstruction era.

There is no doubt among reputable historians that the Confederacy was established upon the premise of white supremacy and that the South fought the Civil War to preserve its slave labor. Its founding documents and its leaders were clear. “Our new government is founded upon … the great truth that the negro is not equal to the white man; that slavery subordination to the superior race is his natural and normal condition,” declared Confederate Vice President Alexander H. Stephens in his 1861 “Cornerstone speech.”

It’s also beyond question that the Confederate flag was used extensively by the Ku Klux Klan as it waged a campaign of terror against African Americans during the civil rights movement and that segregationists in positions of power raised it in defense of Jim Crow. George Wallace, Alabama’s governor, unfurled the flag above the state Capitol in 1963 shortly after vowing “segregation forever.” In many other cases, schools, parks and streets were named for Confederate icons during the era of white resistance to equality.

Despite the well-documented history of the Civil War, legions of Southerners still cling to the myth of the Lost Cause as a noble endeavor fought to defend the region’s honor and its ability to govern itself in the face of Northern aggression. This deeply rooted but false narrative is the result of many decades of revisionism in the lore and even textbooks of the South that sought to create a more acceptable version of the region’s past. The Confederate monuments and other symbols that dot the South are very much a part of that effort.’

Topic: White Supremacist Terrorist Attacks

Aunt Linda: “The antifa is more hateful and violent than anyone and should be branded as a terrorist group like the KKK.”

Uncle Jim: “Foreigners and black people are more violent. You don’t see white people doing stuff like that.”

Karen from High School: “People are entitled to their opinions. Saying Jews are lesser people and wanting an ethno-state doesn’t hurt anyone.”

A List of Terrorist Attacks by White Supremacists In 2017 Alone

List Compiled By: Antifa International

Source Links Attached

January 1, 2017: 19-year-old Nathan Richardson encounters 67-year-old jogger Wenqing Xu and beats him to death in an unprovoked, random attack. After committing the murder, Richardson texted his friends that he “fucked sum chink up. Bodied him. I think pure crime scene — his head’s gone.”

January 20, 2017: A right-wing extremist shoots a protester at a Milo Yiannopoulos event at the University of Washington.

January 25, 2017: An arsonist destroys the only mosque in Victoria, Texas.

January 28, 2017: a First Nations woman walking with her sister is struck by a trailer hitch hurled from a passing vehicle. After struggling in hospital for several months, she succumbs to her injuries.

January 29, 2017: Alexandre Bissonnette walks into a mosque in Canada during evening prayers and opens fire, shooting 17 people and killing six of them.

January 2017: Over 40 Jewish centers in the U.S. receive bomb threats.

February 21, 2017: a 24-year-old transgender woman is shot and killed in Chicago, IL.

February 22, 2017: Adam Purinton tells two men from India to “get out of my country” then shoots both plus a bystander, killing one.

February 26, 2017: a transgender woman is shot and killed in New Orleans, LA.

February 28, 2017: a mosque in Toronto is set on fire by arsonists.

March 1, 2017: a transgender woman is stabbed to death in New Orleans, LA.

March 3, 2017: A Sikh man is shot and injured in front of his Seattle house by a white man wearing a mask, who yells at him to “go back to your country!”

March 12, 2017: a mosque in Ypsilanti, MI. is set on fire by arsonists.

March 20, 2017: James Jackson arrives in Manhattan with a sword and stabs the first black man he sees to death. He later tells authorities he “intended to kill as many black men as he could.”

March 22, 2017: a 38-year-old transgender woman is shot and killed in Baltimore, MD.

March 24, 2017: Yelling “I hate Muslims!” a man in Minneapolis stabbed a Somali man in an attempt to kill him.

March 26, 2017: A racist mob attacks a 15-year-old Polish boy in Gloucestershire and, when a local Asian shopkeeper tries to intervene, attack him as well with crowbars and baseball bats, then attempt to run him over with a car.

March 31, 2017: A 17-year-old Iranian/Kurdish boy is nearly beaten to death by a mob of eight people in Croydon after he revealed to them that he was a refugee.

April 6, 2017: A Charlotte store is set on fire by an arsonist who leaves a warning message for the shop owner that he “did not want any refugee business owners and that they would torture the owner if they did not leave and go back to where they came from,” according to police. It was signed “White America.”

April 21, 2017: a 28-year-old transgender woman is shot and killed in Miami, FL.

April 30, 2017: A white man storms a pool party in San Diego and shoots four black women, two black men, and one Latino man while allowing white attendees to leave. One victim dies while the other six sustain critical injuries.

May 5, 2017: A man walking his dog on South Beach in Miami is confronted by two men who call him a “fucking faggot,” then attack him, beating him unconscious. At one point in the attack, one of the attackers shouts “all faggots need to die and we’re going to make sure they do!”

May 14, 2017: Vandals spray-paint hate graffiti on the home of a black family in upstate New York before attempting to set the house on fire while the family slept. Although the family escaped unscathed, their garage burnt to the ground and their house suffered some damage.

May 17, 2017: A homophobic mob break into the home of a gay couple and shoot and stab both men to death.

May 17, 2017: a 34-year-old transgender woman is shot and killed in Fresno, CA.

May 20, 2017: University of Maryland student and member of the “alt-Reich” facebook group Sean Urbanski walks up to 22-year-old Richard Collins III, who is black and who Urbanski does not know, and stabs him to death in an unprovoked attack.

May 24, 2017: A barrage of doxxing, rape threats, and death threats received by trans comic book artist Sophie Labelle forces her to cancel an appearance and event at a Halifax book store, which also received bomb threats and threats of attacking the event. Labelle is forced into hiding.

May 26, 2017: Three men intervene on a MAX train in Portland when they witness another man verbally abusing two Muslim women with an Islamophobic tirade. The Islamophobe responds by pulling out a knife and stabs the three interveners, killing two of them.

May 27, 2017: A white man drives his pickup truck through a campsite, targeting the Native Americans camping there while yelling racial slurs at them. He intentionally drives over two Native American men, killing one and injuring the other.

May 27, 2017: A 34-year-old Anthony Hammond lets loose with a flurry of racial slurs directed at a black man in a parking lot, then pulls out a machete and stabs the man before barricading himself in his apartment for several hours, until finally surrendering to police.

June 1, 2017: A Princeton professor and racialized woman is forced to cancel a three-city lecture tour to promote her book about the Black Lives Matter movement after receiving over 50 death threats.

June 3, 2017: 38-year-old white supremacist Phillip Wade racially abuses a 57-year-old black man on an Oakley, CA. bus, then pulls a knife and stabs the man to death while the man is walking away from the confrontation. The victim is the third racialized person Wade has stabbed in the past six years and the second person he’s murdered.

June 18, 2017: two men armed with baseball bats attack a group of Muslim teenagers, kidnapping a 17-year-old girl, who they beat to death, dumping her body in a pond.

June 19, 2017: Shouting “I’m going to kill all Muslims!” 47-year-old Darren Osborne drives a courier van through a crowd of Muslims leaving a Finsbury mosque, killing one person and injuring ten others.

June 21, 2017: an Islamophobe approaches a Muslim man and woman sitting in a car stopped at a traffic light and knocks on the window. When the driver rolls down the window, the Islamophobe sprays the driver and passenger with acid, severely burning both.

July 2, 2017: a 28-year-old transgender woman is shot and killed in Lynchburg, VA.

July 16, 2017: A man attempts to pull the hijab off of a Muslim woman waiting for the tube in London, then hits her when she resists. He then pins her friend to the wall and spits in her face before leaving.

July 16, 2017: Arsonists set a mosque in Manchester ablaze.

July 18, 2017: A NASA researcher of South Asian descent has her car windshield shattered by a rock thrown through it by an assailant screaming “go back to your country!” She’s injured in the attack.

July 19, 2017: Two men exit a car and attack a racialized pedestrian with their fists and an iron bar.

August 5, 2017: A mosque in Bloomington, Minnesota is firebombed, narrowly missing killing & injuring dozens of members there for morning prayers.

August 8, 2017: A well-known Chicago neo-nazi starts an altercation at a concert, then pulls out a smuggled knife and stabs a man and a woman at the show.

August 12, 2017: A white supremacist in Charlottesville, VA. drives his car at high speed directly into a crowd of anti-racist protestors, killing one woman and seriously injured 19 other people.

Clarification: Who are the Antifa?

Source: Washington Post

‘There are antifa groups around the world, but antifa is not itself an interconnected organization, any more than an ideology like socialism or a tactic like the picket line is a specific group. Antifa are autonomous anti-racist groups that monitor and track the activities of local neo-Nazis. They expose them to their neighbors and employers, they conduct public education campaigns, they support migrants and refugees and they pressure venues to cancel white power events.
The vast majority of anti-fascist organizing is nonviolent. But their willingness to physically defend themselves and others from white supremacist violence and preemptively shut down fascist organizing efforts before they turn deadly distinguishes them from liberal anti-racists.
Antifascists argue that after the horrors of chattel slavery and the Holocaust, physical violence against white supremacists is both ethically justifiable and strategically effective. We should not, they argue, abstractly assess the ethical status of violence in the absence of the values and context behind it. Instead, they put forth an ethically consistent, historically informed argument for fighting Nazis before it’s too late. As Cornel West explained after surviving neo-Nazi attacks in Charlottesville, “If it hadn’t been for the antifascists protecting us from the neo-fascists, we would have been crushed like cockroaches.”
Though antifa are often treated as a new force in American politics since the rise of Trump, the anti-fascist tradition stretches back a century. The first antifascists fought Benito Mussolini’s Blackshirts in the Italian countryside, exchanged fire with Adolf Hitler’s Brownshirts in the taverns and alleyways of Munich and defended Madrid from Francisco Franco’s insurgent nationalist army. Beyond Europe, anti-fascist became a model of resistance for the Chinese against Japanese imperialism during World War II and resistance to Latin American dictatorships.’

The Antifa are opposed to fascism (obviously) and are willing to actively fight racists and racism to prevent the harm these people will cause to more vulnerable populations should their actions go unchecked. This technique of activism is often grounded in the understanding that the systemic control of the state is both conditional and power-oriented, which means that the government and the police force work to maintain the interests of their own system and not inherently for the public good. By this definition, individuals, possessing personal autonomy as we all do, have the right and responsibility to act as their own self-defenders and to work to shut down oppressive tactics and organizations, as by the time they get to government it is often too late, and the support of government for justice is conditional and self-motivated. The Antifa are not new, and it is more a tactical approach to activism than it is an outright organization. The Antifa is perhaps best known in the United States for the Black Bloc, and due to their intentionally anonymous dress they are often confused for darker organizations.

“In the face of injustice, neutrality is complicit oppression.” Often our current world mandates radical activism, when Facebook statuses do little, holding signs only does so much, and policy initiatives fail. Most members of the Antifa are normal people and do not live in caves or anything weird like that.

Check back for more updates to this source bank, and leave a comment if there are any other topics need help with for those awkward debates with your conservative Aunt Linda.