derecka Profile picture
rooting for everybody resisting oppression abolitionist | organizer | writer | lawyer | Guardian columnist | COVID 19 Policing Project |
Victoria Koldewyn Profile picture Darren Schultz Profile picture 2 added to My Authors
12 Apr
remember when the Bucks went on a strike to protest police violence and other teams followed? Remember when Obama called LeBron and Chris Paul and told them to stop striking? And to emphasize voting? And to vote for the man pledging millions of dollars to police? Remember this?
all of those young Black people saw their heroes try to do the right thing by simply saying "go vote" and voting didn't stop the police killings. This is why protests erupt the way that they do. The solutions don't match the problems
and Biden and Harris will issue condolences to the family, say that we need change and fairness, and still give more money to the police, and dare yall not to vote for them again in a few years
Read 9 tweets
3 Apr
im yearning to write stories about all of the poor, black people in my life who refused government assistance because of the paperwork
there trope of people “getting over on welfare” obscures the entanglements of getting help in the first place. It is incredibly difficult and it keeps people in poverty
what kind of government cuts someone off for aid for saving $1,000? The United States government. You know how little money that is? And how hard to save it when you don’t have anything?
Read 5 tweets
3 Apr
watching Godzilla v Kong with my kids and now reading how American versions of the movie have ERASED the fact that godzilla was a critique of American militarism and the nuclear bombing of Japan. My mind is blown because all of the heroes in these movies are in the U.S. military
my kids keep asking me which one is the villain and i'm like the one who did the bombing and created the nuclear beast
wow like the U.S. really bombed and occupied Japan and then japanese artists criticized it on film and the Hollywood was like you know what you be a good movie haha wooow capitalism is wild
Read 6 tweets
2 Apr
Good morning: I appreciate the media requests for legal takes on the Derek Chauvin trial, but I am not accepting them now. I'm not watching the trial. I cannot provide a take on whether "justice will be served" because convictions are not justice. There is no justice in the court
I don't think it will send a message to other cops. I've seen cops get convicted before and that did not save George Floyd's life
I watched Michael Dunn's trial and it did not send a message to other racists, it did not save Ahmaud Arbery's life
Read 5 tweets
20 Mar
i've just learned Alvin Sykes has become an ancestor. Mr. Sykes was a tireless organizer. I cant think of a justice cause in Kansas City where he was not involved. He was a founding member of the National Black United Front- KC chapter & made the DOJ reopen Emmett Till's case.
Here's a story about his life and legacy. It does not capture it all…
what annoys me sometimes is the online dismissal of Black people in our communities who say with "hotep" and embody strong Pan-African traditions. But I saw so many of them open schools, tutor Black kids for decades, raise money for Black families, fight for Panthers in exile
Read 7 tweets
18 Mar
A white elected politician just publicly endorsed and celebrated lynching as “taking justice very seriously.”

Justice for who?
Please remove justice from your vocabulary. When you say justice, you mean the power of white people to punish on their terms. And you might protect that power for other groups because it protects white supremacy
That’s why lawmakers will keep funding police to respond to violence because inherent in policing is the power to punish. They don’t care that violence is inherent to policing or who gets hurt
Read 4 tweets
17 Mar
an individual's motives is never their own. it does not belong to them. The conditions upon which the violence occurs is informed by racism, capitalism, xenophobia, patriarchy, and misogyny. It's partly why punishing individuals does not stop the violence; the society is violent
its why we have to combat the violence that encourages this behavior. We have to combat racism directed towards AAPI communities while also combatting militarism and capitalism and border protection because they are all connected
and if he suggests that he was sexually tempted by these places of business, that also sounds LIKE A CHURCH PROBLEM. Teaching people that sex is wrong can literally lead to violence because you are inviting them to police other peoples' bodies and behaviors too
Read 6 tweets
8 Mar
On #InternationalWomensDay I'm thinking of my little sister who is a "picker" on the floor of an Amazon factory. About my grandmother who resigned from her tailor position because the men just assumed that she would clean. About church ladies who ministered but could not preach
i'm reading @Moore_Darnell's phenomenal piece in Ebony on the limits of Black girl magic…
and i am reminded that i am not fighting for a world where women rise to the top, only to be celebrated to exploit other women. I am fighting for an black, radical, internationalist feminist future
Read 7 tweets
7 Mar
i want an nba strike so bad. the league will suspend you from playing games if you are exposed to covid, but will expose you to covid by forcing you to play an exhibition, non-competitive all-star game to increase your exposure? your families?
the black lives banners are gone. Obama told yall not to protest police violence, play ball, tell people to vote. Yall did. the guy elected is giving police more money. and your owners overwhelmingly donated to donald trump???
How are the coaches wearing coaches for racial justice buttons in a league forcing Black people to play who are disproportionately dying from the virus? Who has had it? Lost their moms? Family members? Whose racial justice is this?
Read 6 tweets
1 Mar
I WROTE 3000 WORDS THIS MORNING where is the confetti
i'm emotional this was such a hard chapter to finish
i write things and am like wow i am really grateful for this tradition. really grateful to know, love, struggle, read, fail, try again
Read 4 tweets
21 Feb
In 1953, Claudia Jones delivered perhaps my favorite statement of all time in court. Along with 12 others facing charges under the Smith Act for being a Communist, being anti-fascist, and being anti-war, this black woman dared the judge's absurdity to sentence her.
some excerpts:

"For, even with all the power your Honor holds, how can you decide to mete out justice for the only act to which I proudly plead guilty, and one, moreover, which by your own prior rulings constitutes no crime- that of holding Community ideas?
A year for another vital Communist belief, that the bestial Korean War is an unjust war? Or my belief that peaceful co-existence of nations can be achieved and peace won if struggled for?
Read 9 tweets
18 Feb
hi, my baby turns 7 today, sharing a birthday with Audre Lorde and Toni Morrison. He writes, too! Finished his second book this book. He's curious, loving, and made it a tradition to give his brother a gift whenever he gets one, including today. i feel lucky to be that kid's mom
don't tell robin kelley but Geuce is actually my favorite marxist feminist surrealist. he prays for workers at night and thinks organizers are superheroes and capitalists are villains. he gets angry when i dont have cash on hand to spare when someone asks, or when they dont ask
the lockdowns in DC happened last year right before his birthday and we moved and just lost my grandmother, and i had no idea that we would still be under lockdown a year later. But we will bake our cake, beat this minecraft pinata, and sing Stevie Wonder's happy birthday :)
Read 4 tweets
17 Feb
Student debt cancellation is not a Harvard, Yale, Penn rich kid problem. It is a racial justice problem.

Per Brookings, "Four years after graduation, black graduates have nearly $25,000 more student loan debt than white graduates: $52,726 on average, compared to $28,006."
"Black-white disparity in student loan debt more than triples after graduation."…
The average school debt for black women with a bachelor’s degree is about $25,000, that level of education does not provide the same level of financial security for black women as it does other groups, including white people with less education.
Read 6 tweets
16 Feb
a year ago today, i lost my wonderful grandmother, Virginia Lee, a strong and fierce dancer, poet, tailor, and mother of six who laughed too long at her own jokes. She kept closets full of coats that was my own Narnia and a metal box full of writings that inspired me to write too
She thought my generation was wasteful for discarding clothes with rips and missing buttons, rather than repairing and loving them. I only wear pearl earrings because she loved pearls. She lived most of her life in poverty or at the brink, so her wardrobe was an investment
As she aged, she would say that sugar took from her. her legs. her sight. her health. It was worse than the cancer spreading in her bosom. Sugar wasn't just sugar. it was the cocktail of conditions that lead to premature death. it took a lot from other Black people. It takes.
Read 6 tweets
18 Jan
the united states has convinced do many people that MLK day is a day of service. MLK wasn't interested in "service," he was interested in the redistribution of wealth to render poverty obsolete. Less service, more redistribution
He was called “the most dangerous man in America” by the FBI, not because he was interested in community service, but because he was promoting anti-militarism and anti-capitalism
He was organizing a poor people's campaign to use direct action against the US government for maintaining economic inequality, not to "help out poor people," but to end the idea of poor people
Read 9 tweets
14 Jan
peep this terrible NYT piece on Shirley Chisholm from the 70s:

“... she is not beautiful. Her face is bony and angular, her nose wide and flat, her eyes small almost to beadiness, her neck and limbs scrawny. Her protruding teeth probably account in part for her notice able lisp” Image
i can’t stop thinking about it. Like wow she was running for president and you said yes to publishing this paragraph
part of the staunch defense of Black women politicians- regardless of their politics- probably comes from having to read nonsense like this about your sheroes all of your life
Read 4 tweets
6 Jan
Biden: "This is not America."

Narrator: "It was America."
The United States is a country built on genocide, theft, and slavery. the spectacular and violent maintenance of white supremacy is exactly what america does, and denying that does not make it not true
and emphasis on the spectacular display of violence today. Most of America's violence is mundane and happens on the floor that was taken over by rioters
Read 4 tweets
6 Jan
exactly. also, lots of excitement for black women like Harris and Abrams who perhaps maintain u.s. electoral politics, capitalism and militarism, not as much excitement for the black women who threaten it, like Ilhan Omar and Cori Bush
the liberal negroes are magical, the critical ones are dangerous.
Notice that the Black women who are saying defund the police, medical for all, green new deal, campaign finance reform, and abolish ice are not that magical
Read 5 tweets
8 Dec 20
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
8 Dec 20
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
Read 4 tweets
6 Nov 20
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