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writing for godot

Black Lives Matter, Women's Lives Matter, the Lives of All People in Other Countries Matter

Written by Judy Pasqualge   
Saturday, 06 June 2020 02:48

In the months and years ahead ‒ if connections are not made and silences broken ‒ what we now see playing out regarding racism in the US will be repeated, around issues of greed, hatred and ignorance, and the resulting violence. The focusses will be on the situation of women and children, AND on US active or tacit support for violence against people in other countries.

Action now could accelerate the movement for global social justice. As people around the world come out in support for minorities in the US, there is an opening to expand the agenda.

This is a call for BLM and the broader movement, for the women's movement, and for people in all movements to do just that.

In any society, in any country, and within all groups in society, those with higher positions, status and power often operate with a sense of superior entitlement in a context of impunity ‒ an impunity that works to increase violence. Individuals and groups tend to act in self-interest, misevaluate the issues as not impacting themselves (a form of denial), and refuse to take responsibility. Institutionalised violence is seen in the family, in private and nonprofit groups, and in government.

This often masks anxiety about an external situation/future, or an internal dissonance between ideals and actual priorities and practice. If not addressed, the resulting self-hatred may be projected on to others, and people tolerate the violence perpetrated by their own group.

It is now clear to the world that the dominant ethnic group in the US ‒ nonlatino whites ‒ has usually remained silent regarding the treatment of minorities. Sometimes this stems from an automatic and often unthinking identity with group self-interest, or a lack of direct experience of racism, and almost no education on its own complicity.

Hopefully very soon, there will be a massive and continuous movement by and for women, protesting the institutionalised hatred that has been experienced for thousands of years, all over the world. This is especially clear in the family (wherever servitude is expected and enforced); in the law enforcement/judicial system (where utter impunity reigns); in employment (where women face inferior status and pay, and are bullied by every range of superiors); and in the pervasive practice of physical violence including rape and death.

Men in all ethnic groups can question their tacit identity with their own gender, or their own denial, or their own silence ‒ there is no fence to sit on in this situation of extreme systemic violence either.

The biggest global contribution that people in the US can now make ‒ beyond the fights against racism and misogyny ‒ is to first admit and then oppose the economic and military violence inherent in US foreign policy, which only serves the interests of the privileged and wealthy ‒ the insatiable greed for profit by any means necessary. Education is needed on what is termed imperialism: policy regarding other countries that promotes the extraction of more wealth/value than is put in, AND imposes one acceptable model of development.

And of fascism: one of two modes of political management in capitalism (the other is liberal democracy), in which there is a large state role in running the economy, a lack of democratic institutions, a cult of the leader, and often a prejudice against a particular group(s).

The US engages in military action and supports governments that treat their own people in the very same way we've seen US police act against minorities. In addition, training is provided to foreign security forces so that this can be done more efficiently ‒ one form of 'aid.'

The model promoted sees: extremely low wages paid to workers producing cheap consumer goods bought by all people in the US; long and mandatory work hours; conditions for investment that include the privatisation of public utilities, education and healthcare; requirements for the importation of low-cost US agricultural goods and such services as insurance (undercutting local sectors); and extreme environmental destruction.

Resistance to such outside-imposed conditions of development is often met with extreme brutality by governments supported and trained by our taxpayer-funded government.

The movement in the US against imperialism must:

‒ reject US assistance for or instigation of the overthrow of governments that do not accept the prioritising of US economic interests;

‒ demand an end to the targetted assassination of foreign leaders and other individuals (including the longstanding and pervasive acceptance of huge collateral civilian deaths);

‒ reject the use of economic sanctions on whole civilian populations, which has resulted in the death of hundreds of thousands, if not millions;

‒ question the idea of US entitlement and impunity in all its global aspects, and come out strongly for adherence of our country to international law.

The executive and legislative branches in the US continue to operate with impunity when it comes to foreign policy. Too many people tacitly identify with it via denial of personal impact and/or refusal to take responsibility. In this election year almost all prominent political leaders are failing us on this issue: in the institutions and leadership of both main political parties; in the leading candidates of both political parties; and in all the DP frontrunners for vice-president ‒ of all genders and ethnic groups.

White men with poor records on racism, who support a brutal foreign policy, and don't get it regarding women; white women who are strong on law and order at the expense of minorities, and who support US global supremacy; minority men who do not prioritise the position of women, but do support global supremacy; and minority women who support the same.

When it comes to the positions of women and people in other countries, the calls around racism all apply:

People deserve better than this.

Treat people like human beings.

Make the law real for all people.

Silence is betrayal.

Speak up for others who can't be heard.

When will enough be enough?

Get your knee off our necks.

We can't breathe.

Say their names ‒ of people tortured by US forces or their trainees or by friendly foreign governments, of those killed by drone warfare, of assassinated community leaders.

Do they have to wait for cell phone footage broadcast on national TV? your social media marketing partner
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