author – activist – faculty – mom
Around our nation, white supremacists have been making moves: loud and proud with the protection of a white house administration whose current definition of terrorism focuses on brown people flying planes into buildings but not white people driving cars into crowds.
We feel anger and fear and outrage that we are seeing white supremacy everywhere. But it was always everywhere. Like Malcolm X said: “stop talking about the South. If you’re south of the Canadian border, you south.”
Racism has drilled deep into the earth of this entire nation. From Northern fortunes built on slavery to this native Bay Area land: where a cinema and an Ikea desecrate sacred native burial ground, where we rally against racism in a park named for the Ohlone people our society has fragmented and displaced.
Racism was always here. It just wore a cloak of invisibility, but some of us have been steadily calling out how racism has been operating in every institution of this nation. While I never welcome racism, I do welcome its unmasking—shedding that cloak of invisibility. Racism has been marching barefaced:
I see you racism
I see you anti-Semitism
I see you white nationalism
I see you assembling yourself into seig/heil formation behind he-who-must-not-be-named, occupying the white house.
But where there’s an invisibility cloak, there’s a potential for magic. And we need magic today because people are scared. Scared we won’t make it out of this. Wanna sit home and eat cake, but he who must not be named and his dementors feed on your despair–now is not the time to lose your faith in magic. We can’t afford for any of us to think a like the Dursleys today.
Particularly to white folks who lack hope, you need to follow the leadership of POC, because we—particularly black people and esp black women—have always made a way out of no way – Black Girl Magic.
So each one of us is in wizarding school now and like KRS One said: YOU MUST LEARN. We need to take Defense against the white arts, team taught by Professors Garza, Cullors, and Tometi founders of Black Lives Matter who have a new vision of black leadership and a movement for Black Lives.
We need to study with professor Steve Phillips who looked into the Pensive and broke down the vision in his book Brown Is The New White: demographic changes have made a new American majority where a coalition of POC and progressive whites can win any national election if we have candidates that take bold steps to the left.
So it’s time to bring on the magic:
The Democratic Party needs to stop chasing white racists and start engaging voters in communities of color. The Democratic Party needs to stop thinking like muggles and start living like wizards!
But it’s not just about voting. Voting is just one critical tool to create the conditions in which we organize. Democrats aren’t the answer. Our movements are the answer.
But voting matters! Because republicans in office do everything in their power to enrich corporations, embolden misogyny and white supremacy and crush our movements. Don’t get caught in the trap of expecting perfection from elected officials. You’re not electing a savior, our movements are the savior. Because only powerful, broad-based movements of the people will create the true transformation of our nation and our world. And for that, we need all the spells and all the magic and all the community organizing and all the coalition we can conjure.
I want to see miracles. I want to register enough Latino voters to turn Texas blue. Its’ not about Hillary vs. Bernie. It’s about the forces of progressive change vs. the forces of destruction.
So draw a lighting bolt on your own forehead because we are all the chosen ones. White supremacy has come to destroy us again and again, but we remain.
I don’t yet have the words for the spell that will end racism in my lifetime, but I believe we can do it, and this gathering is a next step.
So I want everybody to look east, toward the white house and repeat after me:
Take that, he-who-must-not-be-named. We’re coming for you.