years ago, i stopped praying to be fearless and started praying to be relentless, so that even when i am afraid, i try
fear gives us information. we need it. and it is okay to be afraid and not know what may happen. fear also can invite wonder that we may never know otherwise, if we weren't afraid in the first place
so i hope that if you are afraid like i am today, that you also search for relentlessness and wonder
"This is my song
And nothing can make it die
It's been so long and it's stronger
I know why
And I wonder if you really, really know
That as long as I live I will sing my song
That as long as I live I will sing my song
That as long as I live I will sing my song for you"

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More from @dereckapurnell

8 Dec
hi, some personal news— so grateful to write two books that I deeply believe in, for my city, for all of the protestors, organizers, and thinkers who make our liberation work possible, and for you, too.

so eager to learn what you think! Image
very thankful to my literary agent @AliaHanna and wonderful editor, @alessandra115 for making this project possible!
and tremendously thankful for so many of my political homes and comrades, most recently Belinda Hall, the Ferguson Collaborative @ActionSTL, @Dreamdefenders for trusting me as a thinker, lawyer and organizer
Read 6 tweets
6 Nov
hi, Abrams played a part. But these takes that anyone “singlehandedly delivered a win” draw from capitalist logic that one person can be responsible for the hard work of many. Organizers and coalitions did this, have been doing this for years
Lots of black women did this. Lots of black people did this. Multiracial coalitions did this
oh I see. We cant let centrist narratives force us to obscure the truth. Centrists downplaying Abram's work doesn't mean that we have to downplay organizers who got this done. It means we tell our own narratives - not simply respond to bad or wrong ones. We are better than that
Read 5 tweets
19 Sep
Resistance, organizing, protests and struggle have done much more for social movements than the Supreme Court ever has. A vacancy is concerning, alarming even, surely. But history teaches us to resist, not defer to courts
I literally said that the vacancy may be concerning and alarming. And please stop trying to explain to me, A LAWYER, what the courts do fam. I know
Actually, I know exactly what the courts do. I study court cases. I also study social movement history. And none of those wins would have been possible without resistance. Courts are important. Not the only, or even most important tool, in the box
Read 6 tweets
12 Aug
hi, I wrote about why progressive Black women and women of color might feel torn about Kamala Harris. Truth is, we are tired. We are gonna have to play defense because of racism and offense because she's moderate dem.

theguardian.com/commentisfree/…
Yet the defense against racist, sexist attacks must not interfere with the necessary offense required to push the Biden-Harris political ticket, for people who choose to play the electoral politics game.
When activists criticized President Barack Obama, we were scathingly reminded how hard it was for him to be a Black man in the White House. He had significant executive power to shift resources, call for legislation, and even free people from prison. We were told to wait.
Read 7 tweets
9 Aug
Six years ago, I hosted a conference for young Black girls. @MsPackyetti was the keynote. After the conference, we found out a Black boy in St. Louis was killed by the police. That boy was Michael Brown.
My furniture was held on W. Florissant in a Public Storage. I was supposed to pick it up and drive from Ferguson to Cambridge to start harvard law school. I had no idea I'd be protesting and organizing against police violence that summer
Darren Wilson killed Michael Brown. Left his body in the August heat for four hours in an apartment complex. an Antigone without any brothers
Read 9 tweets

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