Saturday, December 6, 2014

The Fight For $15, #blacklivesmatter, and how they're the same protest.

The other day someone posted a picture I saw. It was a history lesson to white people on how black people learned violence from us. My first instinct was to start checking the veracity of the entire post. Fact checking is something I believe in heavily. However, after my initial reaction, before I had time to act on it, I realized I was falling prey to the same stuff everyone else has.

The thing is, it isn't a black problem. It isn't a white problem. It isn't a white versus black problem. This is a class warfare problem. Let's face it cops kill white folk too. Difference is, when it happens to a white person it gets half as much media attention because when it happens to a non-white it becomes a racism story.

Here's a sad truth about racism: It sells. You put a story in your news paper, or on your late night news that involves racism and people are gonna watch, they're gonna buy. They wanna see how it plays out. The racists want to see that those they hate got what they "deserved." Non-racists want to see justice done and equality achieved.

What they don't get into in these stories is the income level of the various victims. You see more police violence against blacks than whites because, even today, you have a larger number of African-American households living in poverty than you do white. (27.4% of African-American households, 26.6% of Hispanic households, and just 9.9% of white households).

Here's the thing... when poor people die no one cares! We've worked out a system where we don't have to provide adequate healthcare for poor people. We don't force employers to provide living wages for poor people. We give employers an incentive to cut hours for poor people (because, now, if you give them too many hours, you have to give them healthcare). We have done everything we can over the last 35 years to work towards taking more and more away from the poorest people out there. Now we've started killing them, and not punishing those people responsible. It doesn't matter if the victim is white or black, Hispanic or Asian. If you're poor, you've got a target on you, and no one is going to care.

We need, all of us, to stop making it a race issue. When we do that, and when we allow the media to dictate that we look at it in those terms, we only empower those people who would work to continue to oppress everyone in the name of larger profits. Make them pay you a living wage, and you can start to make people notice. Continue fighting for separate causes, and no one will care.


  1. It's deeper than just keeping the poor under the's about maintaining a control over them, because if they become a coalesced force, they would be capable of anything.

    1. Nothing stronger than the power of the proletariat as a single unified force. Maybe that's why union busting laws are so popular.