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#BlackLivesMatter

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There is No Climate Justice without Racial Justice

By Thenjiwe McHarris, Movement for Black Lives

Contributing Editor’s Note by Dara Cooper

On April 4, the anniversary of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s assassination, the Movement for Black Lives [M4BL] launched Beyond the Moment: United Movements from April 4th to May Day, a campaign “to strengthen the fight for justice, freedom and the right to live fully, with dignity and respect for all people.” M4BL engaged a broad based, multi-cultural, multi-sector coalition known as “The Majority” to kick off a series of actions, teach-ins and events inspired by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s “Beyond Vietnam” speech between April 4 and May Day.

In his speech, Dr. King named racism, capitalism and militarism as the greatest harms challenging people to commit to the “fierce urgency of now.” As tens of thousands of protesters converged in Washington D.C. for the People’s Climate March to stand up against reactionary assaults on environmental justice by the current U.S. administration, Dr. King’s warning is more urgent now than ever. Because of the highly racialized effects of climate change, communities of color are the most devastated by our current climate conditions.

MLK Called for a “Radical Revolution of Values.” The Movement for Black Lives Delivers One.

By Barbara Ransby | In These Times

50 years ago today, King blasted militarism, racism and poverty in his “Beyond Vietnam” speech. The new Beyond the Moment campaign carries forward his radical vision.

April 4 marks the 50th anniversary of Martin Luther King Jr.’s historic 1967 “Beyond Vietnam” speech. At a gathering in New York’s Riverside Church convened by the antiwar group Clergy and Laity Concerned About Vietnam, he condemned war, U.S. imperialism, materialism, racism and the excesses of capitalism. Exactly one year later, King was assassinated on a balcony of the Lorraine Motel in Memphis, Tennessee.

Luke Cage: An Exploration of Black Identity

By Marquise Griffin

“Man, it is what it is.
You can’t understand a man
if you ain’t live what he lived.”
            -Method Man “Bulletproof Love”

I have a vivid memory of being in the Chicago Union Amtrak station in 2014, waiting for my next train, while CNN footage of Eric Garner being choked to death by New York’s finest played on a loop on the TV screens. Until that point, I had managed to avoid seeing the video since part of me dies each time I see my brethren unjustly killed. I felt disgusted seeing the video, not only because I was not prepared to view it, but also because of the (non)reactions of the people around me. The ones staring at the screen looked impassive, unbothered by the repeated display of Garner surrounded by several officers, as the caption stated that Daniel Pantaleo, the officer who grabbed Garner by the neck, would not be indicted. It occurred to me that while video footage has provided undeniable proof of police violence against Black and Brown people, the public is nevertheless largely unsympathetic to our lived experiences. Repeatedly showing footage of police killing Black people seems to normalize police violence rather than challenging it. This demonstrates that it’s not enough to show that Black and Brown people are killed by police. Critical Race Theory emphasizes that racism has been invisibly normalized in society and asserts the importance of storytelling in order to provide a counter narrative to the dominant hegemony of White supremacy. It is in this context that Luke Cage, a Marvel Netflix original released last year, truly matters and excels.

From #BlackLivesMatter to Black Liberation

https://youtu.be/nyE5nI1nRJI 150 Years to the day following the unconditional Confederate surrender to the Union Army, Freddie Gray was arrested in Baltimore and severely beaten. His subsequent death, and that of other African Americans at the hand of police, exposed the factual chasm between formal equality before the law and actual self-determination and self possession inherent to actual freedom. Recorded at TEDxBaltimore January 2016.

Ligatures for Black Bodies

By Denise Miller

Denise Miller’s stunning artwork is featured on the home page of Praxis Center’s website. Here, she shares three poems from her forthcoming book, Ligatures for Black Bodies, with Rattle Press in November. For Denise, poetry tells the stories of individuals in order to give the entire society its full voice. In Audre Lorde’s words: “our labor has become more important than our silence.”

With Love and Respect: #ScholarsRespond to A Vision for Black Lives

By Keisha N. Blain and Ibram X. Kendi | African American Intellectual History Society

Praxis Center is pleased to collaborate with the African American Intellectual History Society to present featured blog posts from their “#ScholarsRespond to a Vision for Black Lives” online forum. Organized by AAIHS Editors Keisha N. Blain and Ibram Kendi, other participating scholars include Gerald Horne, Duchess Harris, Peniel Joseph, Clarence Lang, Trimiko Melancon, Megan Ming Francis, Hasan Jeffries, and Matthew Delmont. These leading national scholars offer their compelling insights in response to the Movement for Black Lives’ (M4BL) vision statement  released on August 1, 2016. Together, these essays provide a platform for serious engagement with the six policy demands presented in M4BL’s vision statement: 1) end the war on black people; 2) reparations; 3) invest-divest; 4)economic justice; 5) community control; and 6) political power

Policy and Possibility in the Movement for Black Lives Platform

By Matt Delmont | African American Intellectual History Society

Praxis Center is pleased to collaborate with the African American Intellectual History Society to present featured blog posts from their “#ScholarsRespond to a Vision for Black Lives” online forum. Organized by AAIHS Editors Keisha N. Blain and Ibram Kendi, other participating scholars include Gerald Horne, Duchess Harris, Peniel Joseph, Clarence Lang, Trimiko Melancon, Megan Ming Francis, Hasan Jeffries, and Matthew Delmont. These leading national scholars offer their compelling insights in response to the Movement for Black Lives’ (M4BL) vision statement  released on August 1, 2016. Together, these essays provide a platform for serious engagement with the six policy demands presented in M4BL’s vision statement: 1) end the war on black people; 2) reparations; 3) invest-divest; 4)economic justice; 5) community control; and 6) political power

The Black Lives Matter Syllabus

From the killings of teenager Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri; to the suspicious death of activist Sandra Bland in Waller Texas; to the choke-hold death of Eric Garner in New York, to the killing of 17 year old Trayvon Martin in Sanford, Florida and 7 year old Aiyana Stanley-Jones in Detroit, Michigan—-#blacklivesmatter has emerged in recent years as a movement committed to resisting, unveiling, and undoing histories of state sanctioned violence against black and brown bodies. This Gallatin seminar links the #blacklivesmatter” movement to four broader phenomena: 1) the rise of the U.S. prison industrial complex and its relationship to the increasing militarization of inner city communities 2) the role of the media industry in influencing national conversations about race and racism and 3) the state of racial justice activism in the context of a neoliberal Obama Presidency and 4) the increasingly populist nature of decentralized protest movements in the…

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