I feel like this is sort of relevant right now with all the discussion going on. I don’t have a lot to say about the execution of Troy Davis that isn’t a redundant “I really can’t believe the death penalty still exists anywhere, especially if there’s even a single shred of doubt” which, let’s face it, helps no one.
I remember when I first heard of institutional racism, I was like, but I would never dislike someone because of the colour of their skin! There’s no way I could ever be racist in any way, shape or form! I’M A NICE PERSON I WOULD NEVER THINK SUCH HORRIBLE THINGS. For a long time, I thought that saying that I didn’t SEE colour was a good thing because THAT’S HOW LITTLE IT MATTERED TO ME, but then you kind of realise that by saying that you’re ignoring a whole lot of history and issues that you have the privilege to be unaffected by, and probably contributing to under representation and so on at the same time. But the truth is that we are still living in a society where race is inherently an issue, whether it’s explicit racism or that “I’m just being IRONIC” type or shit you internalise from the media and stereotypes that you then find yourself having to examine later. I think so many people get incredibly defensive if they’re told they’re being racist in some way because they don’t WANT to be racist, they don’t think they’re like that, they’re better than those people! But it’s so much better to just try and learn and educate yourself. I think it’s hard, at first, to recognise that you live with a certain amount of privilege in our society if you’re white, maybe just because you don’t experience racism and it’s easy for you to say it’s a thing of the past, or like, a thing only horrible people buy into.
Anyway, I just think it’s something to keep in mind with a lot of the discussion going on at the moment. Sometimes you have to remind yourself of these things so you don’t make an idiot of yourself no matter how good your intentions might be, I guess! (And if you don’t have good intentions and are aware you might be saying some super problematic things then you’re probably just a bit of a dick, let’s face it.)
London: Racist vigilantes on the loose
Here comes the calvary:
This is terrifying. I did tell you the Right was going crazy. Now, the racists have an opportunity to go on the rampage. In Enfield, dozens of white men aged between 30 and 40 were out earlier, chasing down Hertford Road yelling “Get the p**is”. Paul Lewis reports:
It was only a minor skirmish, but a potentially bad sign for community relations. Police, who have flooded the streets, were quickly on the scene when about 70 men started chasing local youths. I wouldn’t mention their ethnicity, but it seemed to be relevant. The men were white - in their 30s and 40s - and shouting that they wanted to get the “blacks” and “pakis”. Lots of them seemed drunk. One man being held back by police shouted: “They’re rats, they mugged my Auntie the other night.” Jay Bradley, 30, a witness, told me: “What happened here? What I just saw - everyone from this area aren’t gonna have any looting. What I saw was a couple of ethnic lads, if you can call them that, black lads, and they chased them away. A lot of it is alcohol - I don’t think the kids were doing anything. They were just on bikes and in masks. But no-one around here is going to stand for any looting. What are we supposed to do. The Co-op is closed and we’re running out of food.”
I don’t believe that this is just a spontaneous response to looters. When the BNP membership list was leaked, it emerged that there were a number of members scattered around the lower middle class areas, and I wouldn’t be surprised if they, along with local EDL supporters, were among those out tonight. The emergence of racist vigilantism is not unique to Enfield. It’s also emerged that racist Millwall fans are supposedly ‘protecting’ Eltham tonight. Apparently, the EDL have been marching through the area. This is why we urgently need a political response to these riots that organises communities around the issue of justice for victims of police violence. The IPCC have said tonight that Mark Duggan did not shoot at police officers. This, to me, suggests that his death was an execution, and that the bullet in the police radio may have been post-mortem framing. Either way, the police certainly lied about the circumstances of Mark Duggan’s death, and this is a major cause of the anger in black communities, as it should be everywhere. There urgently needs to be an intervention on this by anti-racists and the Left.
(Source: hyperbody, via rimmingway)