Black clad demonstrators with "NO HATE" signs

Can you be Buddhist and antifa at the same time?

Haven’t processed all of this yet, but this is a great exploration of antifa from a Buddhist perspective. Please read if like me you are troubled by both violence and nazis. Buddhists and the Bloc: An Open Thread On Antifa On perceptions: I also want to think about this on a “Buddhist” level. What do …

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Children leaving the Lodz ghetto for the death camp at Chelmno

The price of collaboration

From visiting the wonderful Dutch Resistance Museum many years ago, I knew about the “Judenrat,” councils of Jewish leaders that Nazis used to facilitate the implementation of their own annihilation. Although I’m Jewish and believe it’s important to remember the Holocaust, I never really spent that much time learning the political history. I foolishly thought that “never …

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Silent Sam, 1913

Silent Sam must go

I graduated from the University of North Carolina in 1993. Even then we questioned why any soldier, not to mention one abstracted from a war that divided the country in an effort to preserve the horrible institution of slavery, should be in such a position of honor for all to see. The purpose of Confederate …

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During University Day 1976, students protested the reallocation of Upendo Lounge in Chase Hall. (The Daily Tar Heel, October 13, 1976.)

Student activism is UNC

I’ve been enjoying this excellent UNC History site with an interactive timeline of the successful student activism that led to the creation of the Sonja Haynes Stone Center for Black Culture and History that we know and love today. Don’t let Carol Folt or anyone else tell you activism is anathema to The University of …

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An African American woman with her fist in the air looks a white man giving a Nazi salute

What happened in Durham

Like many people, a week ago I was feeling pretty down about the state of racial justice and just basic humanity in the United States. But then something happened.

In response to the hate and violence displayed in Charlottesville, hundreds of Durhamites came together for a huge vigil on Sunday night. Many friends of mine posted pictures and powerful testimonials to the collective love they felt gathered together.

But I also noticed that some activists had less satisfied responses, including frustration that the mostly-white event marginalized voices of color and those with more radical tactics. Much of that frustration fed into the Monday demonstration, which had already been planned to take place in front of Durham’s old courthouse, where there was a confederate monument with an inscription to “the boys who wore gray.”

Many times I have passed that statue and wondered what on earth it was doing there. Until last year, I really didn’t realize how pervasive these were and what drove their creation.

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Cassandra at the peak of her insanity.

It’s time for SOLIDARITY, not SURPRISE

It’s been two months since I posted here, although I have new things to rant about every single day. While current events might seem unpredictable, and the bizarre machinations of the Bannon/Trump administration may surprise us, there is really nothing that we couldn’t have generally expected with basic knowledge of how authoritarian kleptocrats work, and by listening to what Trump and Bannon have said themselves.

I keep coming back to the feeling of being Cassandra – cursed to know the future and never be believed. Of course she went insane. I am trying not to follow that path by doing what I can: take care of my physical and mental health, take care of my child, teach him about the real world but also help him grow up to be a happy, healthy, and responsible person, stock up on emergency supplies, and build solidarity with friends and family that we are going to need when The Crisis hits.

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Republicans hate democracy, part eleventy million and one

They have tried criminalizing dissent in several other states, and now this “economic terrorism” bill filed today in North Carolina shows once again that Republicans value money and power more than civil rights, the Constitution, or democracy itself.

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No more innocent liberal surprise.

Friends, please don’t make the mistake of thinking that Trump’s seemingly random and ill-informed actions are not part of President Bannon’s strategy. They’ll bleed the public of money, culture, education, health, and community. They’ll sow chaos and violence. And they’ll beef up institutions that can enforce their coup: police & military. This is truly disturbing to …

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RESIST

Bayard Rustin’s call for civil disobedience and direct action tells us that “the only weapon we have is our bodies and we have to tuck them in places so wheels don’t turn.” Even if it that’s not your jam, everyone has a role in creating a society where we divest from things that punish and invest in real community-based measures that keep us safe. It will take community organizers, cultural workers, farmers, caretakers and builders. Now is the time to go big; we have everything to gain.
– Charlene Carruthers

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