We're a little crazy, about science!

Day 314: It’s all part of the act…

Ringleader

Step right up boys and girls! Hurry, hurry to the greatest performance you’ll ever see… Who doesn’t love a good show, right? I mean you get to escape reality for a moment, forget your troubles, and see a whole different world. Unfortunately, once the show is over, it’s business as usual and that can’t happen, not this time. So why are the people in charge doing the same song and dance?

Black lives matter. It’s  a statement of fact, but it’s also been a rallying cry for so many people tired of the country and it’s institutionalized, ingrained, racism. I didn’t honestly think it would happen in my lifetime, or the next generations lifetime, but here we are. We the people are ripping out the racist statues that were protected by the people in power for far too long. I for one welcome with open arms this future. Racism has no place in a supposedly free country.

The people in charge change street names to Black lives matter, or paint giant murals saying Black lives matter. Yet, in the same breath fund the racist institutions that are the problem. It’s white performance at it’s best. Placate the angry masses for the moment with words, not meaningful actions. Because it’s easier than actually doing work. After all, they wouldn’t be in charge if they actually did any work… right?

That goes for you too. Yes you, are you white? Are you in a position to do something more? Chances are if you answered yes to the first question, then I can tell you the answer to the second is yes as well. White privilege and white performancism have often gone hand in hand. We cannot do that any longer. By we, I mean you. I hold no power in this system, I was taught at an early age that “a lot of bad people have my last name,” by the same police that are ensuring that the power dynamic doesn’t change.

Look around, we have laws in place that benefit white people. Schools are a great example of this. They get funded based on the taxes from the district they represent. We have clusters of wealthy white people making sure that the schools their children go to are well funded. Meanwhile the poor and who are often Black or people of color are the ones who could arguably use their education to change the circumstances of the life they were born into. Instead they have to go to schools where funding is virtually non-existent and where they are automatically set up for failure. This is intensional, this is the design, it’s not a bug in the system, it is the point of the system.

When Black people carry around firearms openly, legally, it’s called mob rule (previous post). Yet when white people do it, it’s a beautiful expression of the freedom …they get to enjoy exclusively because they are white. I make this point a lot, but the only time the NRA supports gun laws is when it hurts Black people. Does that sound like the NRA mission to you? It does to me, because they are racist bastards. Hey don’t take my word for it, look at what they’ve done actions speak louder, right?

We are all part of this racist system, but that doesn’t mean we all have the power to effect change. If you’re white then it’s time to stop being part of the show and start actually, physically, doing something. Saying you support the cause or that Black lives matter is not the end of your involvement, it’s just the first baby step. Painting streets or giving pretty speeches, creating task forces or committees, this is white performance at its most basic level. Nothing changes and that’s by design! This is white people saying, “well we’ll look into it and get back to you.” Fuck that, it’s been generations, we need action not a committee and suggestions. We need actual, visible, physical change. We all know what is broken, it’s time to fix it.

That starts by eliminating the police force and replacing it with organizations (multiple!) that can actually do the job they proudly claim to do. Protect people, to serve the community, to help people. Instead the police are just an occupying force. Make no mistake about it, they are designed and built to keep the status quo. That needs to end here and now. We finally have momentum, we can’t waste this chance.

My plea to you is this, if you find yourself with privilege in this world by virtue of the color of your skin at birth, then it is time to help. It isn’t comfortable and we cannot wait for permission. We can’t let the people in charge tell us there is a right way and a wrong way to do this because their right way would have us do nothing. Change is uncomfortable especially for the people in charge, but it needs to happen.

It’s time to end the act, the curtain is closing and the show is over. So why keep trying to perform when there is work to do?

But enough about us, what about you?

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