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Students must have initiative; they should not be mere imitators. They must learn to think and act for themselves — and be free.

César Estrada Chávez (via sinidentidades)

The best way to get kids to read a book is to say: ‘This book is not appropriate for your age, and it has all sorts of horrible things in it like sex and death and some really big and complicated ideas, and you’re better off not touching it until you’re all grown up. I’m going to put it on this shelf and leave the room for a while. Don’t open it.

 Philip Pullman (via abookblog)

The Berlin Wall made news every day. From morning till night we read saw, heard: the Wall of Shame, the Wall of Infamy, the Iron Curtain…

In the end, a wall which deserved to fall, fell. But other walls sprouted and continue sprouting across the world. Though they are much larger than the one in Berlin, we rarely hear of them.

Little is said about the wall the United States is building along the Mexican border, and less is said about the barbed-wire barriers surrounding the Spanish enclaves of Ceuta and Melilla on the African coast.

Practically nothing is said about the West Bank Wall, which perpetuates the Israeli occupation of Palestinian lands and will be fifteen times longer than the Berlin Wall. And nothing, nothing at all, is said about the Morocco Wall, which perpetuates the seizure of the Saharan homeland by the Kingdom of Morocco, and is sixty times the length of the Berlin Wall.

Why are some walls so loud and others mute?

Eduardo Galeano in Mirrors: Stories of Almost Everyone  (via penultimateairbender)

because some walls are for white people

(via audscratprophetlilith)


Ana Teresa Fernández, Borrando la Frontera, performance, 2011.

The surreal act of erasing a border is documented in the short, Borrando la Frontera. A woman in stilettos and a black cocktail dress scales a 30 ft ladder on the sandy beach of Tijuana, bringing the sky back between Mexico and the US, as she paints the dividing fence blue. The film depicts the peace offering of creating the illusion of a “hole in the wall.” The protagonist becomes more visible as the wall starts to disappear into the blue sky. Her attire, the little black dress reflects the notion of prosperity in the US, moreover the funerary symbol of luto, the Mexican tradition of wearing black for a year after a death. Mourning those who have died in attempts of crossing this border to prosper.

Woodstock Film Festival

The settler, if known by his actions and how he justifies them, sees himself as holding dominion over the earth and its flora and fauna, as the anthropocentric normal, and as more developed, more human, more deserving than other groups or species. The settler is making a new “home” and that home is rooted in a homesteading worldview where the wild land and wild people are made for his benefit. He can only make his identity as a settler by making the land produce, and produce excessively, because “civilization” is defined as production in excess of the “natural” world (i.e. in excess of the sustainable production already present in the Indigenous world). In order for excess production, he needs excess labor, which he cannot provide himself. The chattel slave serves as that excess labor, labor that can never be paid because payment would have to be in the form of property (land). The settler’s wealth is land, or a fungible version of it, and so payment for labor is impossible. The settler positions himself as both superior and normal; the settler is natural, whereas the Indigenous inhabitant and the chattel slave are unnatural, even supernatural.

Settlers are not immigrants. Immigrants are beholden to the Indigenous laws and epistemologies of the lands they migrate to. Settlers become the law, supplanting Indigenous laws and epistemologies. Therefore, settler nations are not immigrant nations.

Decolonization is not a Metaphor (via la-key-ma)

Eve Tuck, and K. Wayne Yang

(via takhtee)


Hunger Striking at the White House

A group of three people and their supporters began camping out in front of the White House on Saturday, coinciding with a national day of action against continued deportations by Obama’s administration.  And today, they’ve started an indefinite hunger strike. 

Jose Valdez, a 55-year-old construction worker from Arizona already knows what it’s like to stop eating. Valdez, who’s been working with the Puente Movement, participated in a 15-day long hunger strike in Phoenix that started in February—during which time someone threw burritos at him covered in racist slurs. But the bigger blow for Valdez, was that his 31-year-old son Jaime, who was also on a hunger strike at the notorious Eloy Detention Center, was deported. Valdez concluded his strike in March and is now starting another just a month later.

Jaime Valdez, who says his deportation was retaliation for his participation in the hunger strike at the detention center, turned himself in at the Nogales Port of Entry on April 1, demanding humanitarian parole. Jaime Valdez is now at the Florence Detention Center in Arizona, waiting to hear back to learn whether he will be allowed to reunite with his family. In the meantime, his father hasn’t given up hope.

“I’m in DC hunger striking again to see who will support me,” says father Jose Valdez—adding that he didn’t get much support from politicians during his first hunger strike. “I want to know who will help stop deportations and detentions, and who will help provide some kind of relief for undocumented people.”

This new hunger strike kicks off as a 48-hour fast wraps up on the National Mall. Some 100 women fasters, organized through the We Belong Together campaign, were visited by several members of Congress today, as they conclude a month-long series of fasts to highlight immigration as a women’s issue. 

Changing the way we talk is not political correctness run amok. It reflects an admirable willingness to acknowledge others who once were barely visible to the dominant culture, and to recognize that something that may seem innocent to you may be painful to others.

David Plotz, Why Slate Will No Longer Refer to Washington’s NFL Team as the Redskins

This is the most important thing to understand: something that may seem innocent to you may be painful to others

(via howtofightloneliness)

I recently had someone say to me, “Well X group can’t just expect us all to be mentally updating our list of words that are insulting to them.” I was like “Yes… they can?” It’s not “ooooh evil political correctness,” it’s basic human decency.

(via feministfeels)