From Jena 6 to the #BaltimoreUprising, social media has played integral part in how we organize and galvanize the masses. The use of social media and the democratization of communication have provided platforms that help to amplify the voices of the most marginalized in society. The democratization of communication has also led to new and decentralized models of leadership.
Civil Rights activist, Ella Baker was often critical of the male-led, hierarchical and messianic leadership-style of the Black Church and Civil Rights organizations; Baker called for a more collective form of leadership called, participatory democracy.
Is the hashtag leading us to an Ella Baker style movement?
How do we use these tools to move #BeyondReActivism, beyond the tweeting and protest of #blackdeath to a sustained movement #OrganizingForPower, or holistic community development where the end goal is not reform or rights, but power.
We must move toward an ideological framework for holistic community development. We must move beyond human rights, civil rights and reform based campaigns that appeal to the morality of the empire. As Dr. James Cones stated in 1979 in his article entitled, “A Black American Perspective on The Future of African Theology”,
“This economic and political domination, sharply enhanced and defined by racism, will not be ended simply through an appeal to reason or the religious piety of those who hold us in captivity. Oppression ceases only when the victims accumulate enough power to stop it.”
#MLK2BAKER: #BeyondReActivism #OrganizingForPower