The other night found me wondering who might rush the stage of a presidential hopeful, and suffer the full force of the Secret Service, and pondering even if it was a worthwhile tactic. It didn’t occur to me that this might have been a young man I’d been following since August of last year, when he and others staged the #StoneMountain7 protest. Luckily he managed to get a sit-down with CNN to explain why he did it:
So if you were wondering what cohones it took, or the strategy behind it, you couldn’t ask for a better spokesperson. Of course the optics of this, coming as it did after the cancelled Chicago one, and a hope that whoever did it, had thought out a plan, was first in my mind. So that surprise is the entire reason I followed the Stone Mountain 7; because they were both forward thinking & bold. Even in the face of abject horror, or as I casually refer to as the racist white supremacist heart of America.
Only sorriest that I’ve been off the Twitters for the last couple of days writing and didn’t even realize what was both about to go down, and the aftermath. Apparently since the event this protester was accused of trying to assassinate the presidential hopeful & hatemongerer, and being a part of ISIS. Which makes his pushing back on these false narratives, distancing himself (rightly) from BLM, and making sure the official story is out there an important step. Even if the low-information supporters of that candidate won’t ever see it.
Just realizing only today when the Stone Mountain 7 was trending on my blog & trying to figure out why!! Glad that it is for a worthy cause, and that noone other than this young activist who will continue to inspire & challenge many if not all of the people watching. The same experience was felt when Bree Newsome took down the Confederate Flag in SC. Instantly launching into the public consciousness what well-thought out activism can look like and an iconic image. Having followed her, based on a short film she made, but then seeing both her prescient & well thought response to this national disgrace. Which was a funeral procession marching past the signs of the old confederacy as we mourned the loss of the Charleston 8 and specifically Representative and Pastor Clementa C. Pinckney. This action did eventually lead to a swift removal of that flag, which in turn inspired actions like what StoneMountain7 did.
It is so easy for the MSM to sweep this latest under the rubric of Trump Protesters & ignore the way in which all this activism is interconnected. Erasing the meaningful gains as they chase the next thing that bleeds so it leads their coverage. Yet, we the people should know, and should connect the dots they can’t or won’t. That is the way white supremacy works, as a way of centering its isolated narrative above & beyond all marginalized voices. So let’s not do that, and let’s take inspiration from continuing to disrupt those dangerous paradigms which are dangerously marching hate-speech as a campaign tactic into the mainstream narrative of an election year.
There are many reasonable & even righteous dialogues we could be having that meaningfully impact all lives, and yet this primary season seems deadset on setting an us vs them mentality which we really are going to have to counteract in ways both big & small if we are to not only win an election but set a tone going forward that doesn’t end in years of more gridlock in American halls of power. Let’s hope the next few months offer us more creative activism & calls to action!