use your gifts for the movement

kendra taught me we have really narrowed what gets defined as movement work to “put your body on the line with direction action.”

putting your body on the line is helpful. needed. for sure. but the narrative that the best/only thing you can do to support black lives is putting your body on the line is a partial one.

IMO,the (often reductionist) narratives around things like the civil rights era are actually very limiting. the history books focus on the part of the work that focused on the bruality. and the brutality was real.

but focusing on the brutality was a part of a broader strategy to win specific victories by raising to the level of national attention particularly viscious white supremacy.

that’s only part of the story, though.

what those narratives leave out are all the people cooking and driving folks where they need to go and doing childcare and house cleaning and yard tending and grocery shopping and on and on. they leave out all the study groups and folks bunking down to run and teach freedom schools for young people.

and so much more.

if you are coming into movement this week, or bringing others in, my ask is that you get real clear about what your gifts are and find ways to use them. follow the leadership of black folks, absolutely. stretch yourself, yes. AND know that putting your body on the line is one of MANY MANY ways you can show up for black liberation (which is actually about liberation for all people).

UPDATE: my roommate drew this the same morning i wrote this. please share (or feel free to illustrate any of the other 198 methods of nonviolent action)