With everything that’s going on right now with the George Floyd protests and riots, I can’t help but see the similarities between dystopian movies/novels and what is going on in the world today.
I read somewhere that dystopian literature has trained the youth of today to detect these signs of injustice and prepare them to fight. As an avid reader, I would have to agree. And while looting and property damage and violence may not seem like the answer to some, how anyone can deny that people of color have the right to be angry and demand change is beyond me. That the moment someone burns down a building, the rights of a people are somehow forfeit.
Urban riots must now be recognized as durable social phenomena. They may be deplored, but they are there and should be understood. Urban riots are a special form of violence. They are not insurrections. The rioters are not seeking to seize territory or to attain control of institutions. They are mainly intended to shock the white community. They are a distorted form of social protest. The looting which is their principal feature serves many functions. It enables the most enraged and deprived Negro to take hold of consumer goods with the ease the white man does by using his purse. Often the Negro does not even want what he takes; he wants the experience of taking. But most of all, alienated from society and knowing that this society cherishes property above people, he is shocking it by abusing property rights. There are thus elements of emotional catharsis in the violent act.” – Martin Luthor King, Jr.
People > property, every time.
How you can help:
- Check out https://www.thecut.com/2020/05/george-floyd-protests-how-to-help-where-to-donate.html
- This website (nixthe6.org) breaks down police union contracts and exposes their flaws, shows you how to get involved with local orgs, and gives you your mayor’s number/email to contact with a script. It even shows the rate for how many bad cops are rehired in your city.
- Check out https://defund12.org/. This tool lets you email all of your city’s elected officials with one click. The general idea is moving city budget money away from police departments (which are highly militarized) and moving them over to community programs that are needed.
- Sign the BLM Petition to defund the police: https://actionnetwork.org/forms/2005_email_blm_defund
- Sign this petition to make the KKK illegal: https://www.change.org/p/us-congress-make-the-kkk-illegal