What do we do when being a good person and being a good citizen are at odds?
What do we do when the only way to support a morally just cause — no less than the end of systematic brutality and codified corruption — is to intentionally take part in a convulsion of destructive rage? To stoke the fire of that burning house?
We must hold space for anger that the police are murdering people of color, sadness and regret that social conditions have driven good people to such a desperate act as rioting. And also, empathy for any POC business owners and workers finding themselves financially harmed by the riots.
Critically, we must look at the structures that have created these events through the eyes of the people most oppressed by them. Right now it’s vital to understand the role of socialist direct action and imagination, and support the coming together of different marginalized groups in this moment of clarity and terror. Stonewall was a riot; as was Paris ’68. Anti-racists everywhere can elevate Black and Brown voices of the left in discourse, and work for the liberation of all. All of us can strive harder, together, to create a world where the police don’t murder people like George Floyd. Where we can hold those with power accountable through peaceful means and trust that they will listen. Some reading: "From Black Lives Matter to Black Liberation", by Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor. Excerpt here.