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The problem with the Black Lives Matters movement...

 
 
Reply Mon 25 Apr, 2016 02:48 am
The problem with much of the Black Lives Matters movement actions (not the concept itself, the execution) is that most of the time the participants don't articulate any solutions and just yell at the people who they need to work with. I'm glad Obama is helping point out to them that just yelling about what they are against doesn't help anything. To enact change you can't just be against something you must also be for something. They need to work harder on articulating not just the dissatisfaction with the status quo but also what it is they want from the people they are yelling at to do (many of whom agree with them on the problem but don't understand why they are being yelled at mindlessly).

Quote:
“Once you’ve highlighted an issue and brought it to people’s attention and shined a spotlight, and elected officials or people who are in a position to start bringing about change are ready to sit down with you, then you can’t just keep on yelling at them,” Obama said.
“And you can’t refuse to meet because that might compromise the purity of your position,” he continued. “The value of social movements and activism is to get you at the table, get you in the room, and then to start trying to figure out how is this problem going to be solved.”


http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/world/obama-to-black-lives-matter-yelling-is-not-enough-to-achieve-progress/article29745072/
 
revelette2
 
  2  
Reply Mon 25 Apr, 2016 08:48 am
@Robert Gentel,
I read about that yesterday. I wonder how it is assimilated by the movement. Positive, negative?
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Blickers
 
  2  
Reply Mon 25 Apr, 2016 08:53 am
Here's where Hillary said approximately the same thing in a meeting with Black Lives Matter last summer:

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sozobe
 
  6  
Reply Mon 25 Apr, 2016 08:56 am
@Robert Gentel,
I agree. I think it's not that weird that they're still at the yelling point in the movement -- the movement itself is still coalescing. But yeah, I think Obama's comments were good and I think the movement would be well-served to take them to heart.
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Sturgis
 
  4  
Reply Mon 25 Apr, 2016 09:04 am
Sincerely hope that they will heed President Obama's words.
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Lash
 
  2  
Reply Mon 25 Apr, 2016 03:48 pm
I think the behavior they used is why people were listening pretty raptly for a while.

The sit back and be patient admonitions of the past 150 years didn't get them fair treatment. Then, as we all noticed, blacks were getting murdered or beaten at a pretty hardy clip by cops with little to no provocation - or consequences - for a while. Racism has been built into so many systems in the US... and it looked like, due to the irritating yelling efforts of BLM, the black community was legitimately pushing toward power...but lately, things seem quiet - like they're losing steam.

I'll be happy for dialogue too, but I think possibly the irritating yelling got them where they are - or maybe - were.

revelette2
 
  3  
Reply Mon 25 Apr, 2016 05:34 pm
No, what got attention was the simple fact of unarmed blacks were getting shot down in the streets and other abuses. If anything the movement has hurt the movement, if that makes sense. In other words, it is all about the movement and not enough about what is actually going on with the systematic abuse of blacks in the justice system.
bobsal u1553115
 
  2  
Reply Mon 25 Apr, 2016 09:36 pm
http://www.alternet.org/activism/black-lives-matter-movement-most-visible-twitter-its-true-home-hard-work-organizing


<snip>
Writing in Truthout, organizer Ejeris Dixon, who has worked with the New York City Anti-Violence Project and the Audre Lorde Project, describes base-building as, at heart, relationship-building: “a series of activities designed to introduce, engage, and keep people involved in our movements. That means meeting individuals where they are and building forward from that place—the barbershop, the salon, the laundromat, the doorway—where we come together as people and have a conversation.” The Movement for Black Lives policy table, which grew out of a national gathering of activists at Cleveland State University last summer, recently set out to do just that. In January, the policy table announced the start of a six-month process to develop a national agenda. Ash-Lee Woodard Henderson, a regional organizer with Project South, is a participant. She says she feels the pressure of developing a vision and creating infrastructure while responding to the seemingly endless killings of black people by police: “We’re building the bicycle while riding it and being shot at.”

Henderson’s background, like Carruthers’s, shows deep connections to earlier iterations of the black-liberation movement in the United States. “My mom is an original Black Panther Party member, and my father was very big in the Black Arts Movement in Tennessee and also in the black radio scene,” Henderson says. When a 66-year-old black man named Wadie Suttles died in custody at the Chattanooga jail in 1983, her father took the bold step of naming the police officer suspected of the fatal beating on the air. In 2004, Henderson met veterans of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee and the Southern Christian Leadership Conference when she took a monthlong bus ride with other young activists to register voters and commemorate Freedom Summer.

Among the current organizers, evidence of such long-standing commitment to racial justice is common, notes Barbara Ransby. Many leaders are taking the skills developed in labor or prison or community organizing and applying them to new collaborations. “Oftentimes we don’t do that genealogy, and a new organization feels like it came out of the blue,” she said. “There were new formations, but they were not newly formed organizers.”

* * *

“The work we have to do doesn’t necessarily lend itself to 140 characters.” —Rachel Gilmer, Dream Defenders
What is new, at least for many, is the space for explicitly black organizing undertaken by activists tied to black communities. Makani Themba, a longtime organizer and founding director of the Praxis Project, explains that in the 1960s, the leaders of the movement were the heads of black institutions with sizable bases—think Martin Luther King Jr., Malcolm X, Ella Baker, Stokely Carmichael. That changed in ’70s and ’80s, as black leadership came to mean “the most deeply penetrated black person in white or mainstream institutions,” Themba adds. As civil-rights organizations began to depend more on corporate contributions than member donations, and as Reagan-era cuts decimated organizations serving the black poor, black activists who wanted organizing and advocacy jobs turned to the institutions that had the resources to pay and retain them—often unions and economic-justice organizations that operated outside any explicitly black cultural context.

That pattern has shifted in recent years. The phrase “unapologetically black” appears on T-shirts and hoodies worn by movement activists, and a dedication to using messages appealing to black audiences dominates today’s approach to racial-justice organizing. New groups like BYP 100, the Dream Defenders, and Black Lives Matter have blossomed in the wake of Zimmerman’s acquittal. Denise Perry directs Black Organizing for Leadership & Dignity, whose stated mission is to “help rebuild Black social justice infrastructure…and re-center Black leadership in the US social justice movement.” BOLD launched in 2011 and graduated its first class of trainees the following year. Perry says that the focus on black organizing was new for a majority of participants. “Many of them were organizing in multiracial, multiethnic organizations. That work is important; we’re not going to win on our own. But the space to have conversations about what we need to work on was new for 98 percent of the people in the room.”

* * *

After the Dream Defenders’ successful occupation of the Florida statehouse in 2013, its members were tempted to focus on actions that would satisfy a Twitter following that had jumped from about 4,000 to more than 30,000 in a month’s time. But the work of organizing “has to be done,” says Rachel Gilmer, 28, who joined the group last summer, “and it doesn’t necessarily lend itself to 140 characters that are going to get retweeted thousands of times.”

In the end, the commitment to building local campaigns won out over the lure of high visibility. The organization, which has eight chapters in Florida, is now in the midst of a yearlong effort to determine its long-term strategy, regardless of the ebbs and flows created by social-media buzz. Last fall, the group put a three-month moratorium on social media, which strengthened relationships and built trust among colleagues, Gilmer says. “It was an opportunity for us to take a break from all the noise in order to get back connected with one another.”

It also forced a reality check about relationships in the movement. “We’re like ‘Hey, fam!’ [online], but people don’t really know each other,” Gilmer says. “There’s no substitute for human interaction.”

<snip>
revelette2
 
  2  
Reply Tue 26 Apr, 2016 08:39 am
@bobsal u1553115,
Quote:
Perry says that the focus on black organizing was new for a majority of participants. “Many of them were organizing in multiracial, multiethnic organizations. That work is important; we’re not going to win on our own. But the space to have conversations about what we need to work on was new for 98 percent of the people in the room.”


I am not sure what the above means. Does it mean the organizations were not really focused on issues of blacks in the justice system before?
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tony5732
 
  0  
Reply Sun 14 Aug, 2016 01:25 pm
@revelette2,
Completely agree. Seeing an asshole cop on tv gunning down a black guy running away gets people disgusted and angry. Than there is a protest, stuff gets trashed, traffic gets backed up, and white cops are killed just for being white and the dialogue is flipped.
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tony5732
 
  0  
Reply Sun 14 Aug, 2016 01:26 pm
@Robert Gentel,
They do a lot more than yell....
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tony5732
 
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Reply Sun 14 Aug, 2016 01:33 pm
@Lash,
I disagree. Obama, king, Michael Jackson, and a lot of other Black people did awesome positive things over the years to get respect for black people, successfully. BLM is counterproductive to that, because instead of breaking the stereotype they reinforce it by living up to it.
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