If you’re like me, and you have been trying to research and learn as much as possible about racial injustice so that you can better support the Black Lives Matter movement (thank you, by the way) then here is a list of things you can read and watch.
How To Make This Moment The Turning Point For Real Change, by Barack Obama
I wrote out some thoughts on how to make this moment a real turning point to bring about real change––and pulled together some resources to help young activists sustain the momentum by channeling their energy into concrete action. https://t.co/jEczrOeFdv
— Barack Obama (@BarackObama) June 1, 2020
Barack Obama, former President of the United States released this poignant article on Medium about the Black Lives Matter movement and how we can use this to create transformation.
Obama explains that these protests “represent a genuine and legitimate frustration over a decades-long failure to reform police practices and the broader criminal justice system in the United States.”
By detailing the importance of the movement and the imperativeness of combining this energy with using the weapon of voting, Obama reveals that this could establish the change in society we need to see.
Why I’m No Longer Talking to White People About Race, by Reni Eddo-Lodge
Reni Eddo-Lodge, a favourite among many, released this book in 2017 after her infamous blogpost in The Guardian. By ‘White People’ she means the “people who refuse to accept the existence of structural racism and its symptoms.” She explains that anyone who refuses to acknowledge that a problem exists cannot be educated on the subject. This book is particularly significant if you are constantly finding yourself caught in heated arguments with people who choose to remain ignorant and small-minded.
13th is perhaps the most relevant film on Netflix at the moment. With its focus on the history of racial inequality in the criminal justice system, particularly the disproportionate number of African Americans in incarceration. Its title “13th” refers to the 13th amendment in the US Constitution which occurred in 1865. The amendment asserts that “neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction.” It’s research into how this amendment has been manipulated and distorted to unjustly convict people of colour is truly disturbing.
When They See Us (Netflix)
This four part series details the lives of the five Black and Latino teenagers who were wrongfully accused of raping and beating the 28 year old banker, Trisha Meili. The series revealed the unjust ways the police treated them and how they coerced them into giving false confessions by promising them freedom. Watching this will teach anyone about how much corruption there is in the criminal justice system. particularly if you are a person of colour.
Trial By Media: 41 Shots (Netflix)
Much like the story of George Floyd, where persons of colour are shot for perceived misdemeanors (read: they did nothing). This episode in the series, Trial by Media, portrays the 1999 brutal killing of the unarmed Guinean immigrant Amadou Diallo who was merely trying to enter his own home. NYPD officers had shot him an excessive 41 times, and despite this harrowing fact, not a single officer that was involved was convicted.
These texts are certainly confronting, and may leave you feeling uncomfortable, but they are some of the best educational resources for anyone who wants to further their understanding of everything that’s going on at the moment.
Subscribe to FIB’s Weekly Alchemy Report for your weekly dose of music, fashion and pop culture news!