Paul Kivel's Newsletter 
Resources for Racial Justice

A Note from Paul           Fall 2016
Dear People, 

With all the focus on the elections it can be difficult to remember (or even to find out about) the millions of people organizing for social justice every day. Some of those struggles are highlighted in this issue of my newsletter. The main focus is the tremendously inspiring, comprehensive, and specific Movement for Black Lives vision and policy platform which deserves your attention. Please read it. Better yet, get together with others and read and discuss it together. Then decide how you can get involved in working for one of the policy proposals. 

There is much need for those of not situated in frontline communities such as North Dakota, prisons, or Black communities to look at our own communities and see what the work is at home, while providing solidarity for frontline struggles. In truth, every community is a frontline of some sort. When you have identified where best to get involved I have provided a checklist of resources that you can bring to the struggle and linked to the CRC statement on showing up for racial justice.  

The newsletter also includes links to articles on the economic system which we have to understand and address whatever issue we are working on, as well as other social justice resources. Please share it widely. 

In This Issue

Black Lives Matter Platform
Black Humanity and dignity requires Black political will and power. Despite constant exploitation and perpetual oppression, Black people have bravely and brilliantly been the driving force pushing the U.S. towards the ideals it articulates but has never achieved. In recent years we have taken to the streets, launched massive campaigns, and impacted elections, but our elected leaders have failed to address the legitimate demands of our Movement. We can no longer wait. 

In response to the sustained and increasingly visible violence against Black communities in the U.S. and globally, a collective of more than 50 organizations representing thousands of Black people from across the country have come together with renewed energy and purpose to articulate a common vision and agenda. We are a collective that centers and is rooted in Black communities, but we recognize we have a shared struggle with all oppressed people; collective liberation will be a product of all of our work. 

Read about the full Movement for Black Lives here.  
End the War on Black People
                                               We demand an end to the war against Black people . Since this country's inception there have been named and unnamed wars on our communities. We demand an end to the criminalization, incarceration, and killing of our people. 

For more, read here
W e demand reparations for past and continuing harms . The government, responsible corporations and other institutions that have profited off of the harm they have inflicted on Black people - from colonialism to slavery through food and housing redlining, mass incarceration, and surveillance - must repair the harm done. 

For more, read here
We demand  investments in the education, health and safety of Black people , instead of investments in the criminalizing, caging, and harming of Black people. We want investments in Black communities, determined by Black communities, and  divestment from exploitative forces including prisons, fossil fuels, police, surveillance and exploitative corporations. 

For more, read here
Economic Justice
We demand economic justice for all and a reconstruction of the economy to ensure Black communities have collective ownership, not merely access. 

For more, read here
Community Control
We demand a world where those most impacted in our communities control the laws, institutions, and policies that are meant to serve us -  from our schools to our local budgets, economies, police departments, and our land - while recognizing that the rights and histories of our indigenous family must also be respected. 

For more, read here
Political Power
We demand independent Black political power and Black self-determination in all areas of society. We envision a remaking of the current U.S. political system in order to create a real democracy where Black people and all marginalized people can effectively exercise full political power. 

For more, read here

Suggestions for Leveraging Resources for Racial Justice
You have the resources to leverage for racial justice! 

1. Money - direct donations, hosting house parties 

2. Time - support work, administration, research, filing 

3. Skills - fundraising, web-based, outreach, childcare, writing, music, art, carpentry 

4. Connections - to journalists, politicians, decision-makers, funders 

5. Space - providing space in your house, office building., religious or community organization for meetings, living room gatherings, workshops or art builds  

Click here for more suggestions. 

Community Ready Corps (CRC) for Self Determination
 CRC is a liberation organization that combats white supremacy and actively builds and supports self determination in nine specific areas. 

                    Image result for community ready corps for self determination
Images provided by Oleh Siobodeniuk, some rights reserved.

The 5 Methods of Divestment & Weaponization of White Power & Privilege 

1. Organization - build relationships that are capable of united action to support Black liberation struggles. 

2. Contribution - strategically support Black-led organizations to build campaigns and projects designed to meet the needs of disenfranchised communities, as defined by the competent leadership of disenfranchised communities. 

3. Infiltration - penetrate the enemy's line at weak or unguarded points 

4. Intervention - come between disputing people/groups 

5. Reparation - make amends for injury and wrongdoing 

For further details on these five points, read here

The Harriet Tubman Collective 
        The Harriet Tubman Collective is a collective of Black Deaf & Black Disabled organizers, community builders, activists, dreamers, lovers, striving for radical inclusion and collective liberation. 


As the Harriet Tubman Collective points out in their response to the Movement for Black Live's platform, we have to constantly ask ourselves who is being left behind, who is being left out. I take their critique not to invalidate the platform, but to expand it to include the often ignored presence of Black people with disabilities. Please read the platform before you read their critique! 

Read what this collective has to say in: 

Wear out the Silence

Picture Source Wear out the Silence

 "Wear out the Silence" is a campaign asking white people to wear Black Lives Matter t-shirts every Friday as a way for us to bring the racial-justice conversation deeper into our lives. We want to use these conversations to move more white people into action, and to make visible the many people supporting the Movement for Black Lives. 

To learn more about this campaign, read here

Several Prisons Now Involved in Largest Strike in U.S. History

"Despite the vastness of the strike, the mainstream media refuses to cover it." Source: Marlee kokotovic @ Nations of Change. 

In 40 prisons across the country, thousands of prisoners are joining together and refusing  to follow orders until their worker rights are met. They are striking against low wages earned, horrible working conditions, and violent punishments. Many prisoners have faced threats because of these protests, but they are standing their ground. 

To learn more about these strikes, read here

Rolling Stone: 6 Ideas for a Cop-Free World! 
After months of escalating protests and grassroots organizing in response to the police killings of Michael Brown and Eric Garner, police reformers have issued many demands. The moderates in this debate typically qualify their rhetoric with "We all know we need police, but..." It's familiar refrain for those of us who've spent years in the streets and the barrios organizing around police violence, only to be confronted by officers who snarl, "But who'll help you if you get robbed?" We can put a man on the moon, but we're still lacking creativity down here on Earth. 

 For the full article, read here

protester holds up her hands in front of a line of NYPD motorcycles. 
TIMOTHY A. Clary/AFP/Getty Images

Updates on Website
Below are links to some of the recent posts that have been uploaded onto my website. These have been adapted from my book You Call This a Democracy? (2004). 

Book Suggestions
1.  From the Black Lives Movement to Black Liberation: by Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor 
Radical look at how we got to where we are over the last 50 years and what kinds of strategies it will take to truly achieve Black-centered transformative change in our society. 

2. Citizen, An American Lyric: by Claudia Rankine 
Poetic description at the deep emotional and physical impact caused by the small and large daily attacks on African Americans. 

3. The Fire Next Time: by James Baldwin
Searing, brilliant and deeply insightful description of the causes and consequences of racial injustice in the U.S. and its impact on all of us. 

4. Radical Dharma,Talking Race, Love, and Liberation: by Rev. angel Kyodo-Williams and Lama Rod Owens
Demonstrates how social transformation and personal, spiritual liberation must be articulated and inextricably linked  

5. Living in the Tension: by Shelly Tochluk 
Explores steps towards releasing the transformative power available when activists and spiritual people of various racial backgrounds strengthen bridges between their differing principles and expectations. 

6. When We Fight, We Win: by Greg Jobin-Leeds and AgitArte
Highlights several recent progressive victories, analysis by participants of what made them successful, and is illustrated by beautiful posters from these movement building campaigns. 

Anahi and Comun Tierra
Our youngest son, Ryan, and his partner Leticia welcomed Anahi into the family on April 24 th  this year. We were fortunate to be able to go down in May and meet them. They are temporarily living in Florianopolis until the end of the year and will settle somewhere else in Brazil after that. Information about their 6 ½ year ongoing traveling project to document alternative and sustainable ecological communities throughout Central and South America can be found at . The video they made after four years on the road is a good introduction to what they are doing.