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(JAI:  Sent on to me by a comrade who was one of my 9th grade teachers.  It
makes a compelling case.  I know: a look at the webaddress and one sees
'Sierra Club'.  "Treehuggers"  But the article is as thoughtful  as
well-reasoned, as it is a passionate melding of the inner connections
between a capitalism based on people and a capitalism based in color and
the destructions it is visiting on this earth.) Racism Is Killing the

The ideology of white supremacy leads the way toward disposable people and
a disposable natural world

By Hop Hopkins | Jun 8 2020

Last week, my family and I attended an interfaith rally in Los Angeles in
defense of Black life. We performed a group ritual in which we made noise
for nine minutes to mark the last moments of George Floyd’s life. My wife,
my oldest daughter, and I played African drums to mark those nine minutes
with the rhythm of a beating heart. *Da-dum, da-dum, da-dum*, over and over

While we drummed, I realized how difficult it is to keep up any physical
activity for nine minutes straight. Most of us can’t even sit completely
still on our butts for nine minutes; if you’ve ever meditated, you
understand why they refer to sitting as *practice*.

As I struggled to maintain my posture and keep up the rhythm, I thought
about the level of commitment it takes to hold someone down for nine
minutes straight. The realization horrified me. The cop who has been
charged with murdering George Floyd had to have been deeply committed to
taking his life. The police officer had so many chances to let up the
pressure, to let George live. Yet the officer made the choice not to.

To spend nine minutes taking the life-breath from another person: That is
what white supremacy does to white people. That is what white supremacy
does to the rest of us too. White supremacy robs each of us of our
humanity. It causes white people to view Black people as less than human.
Every one of those cops watching George die was convinced that the man
pinned to the ground was less than human, was in some way disposable.

Otherwise, how could they hold him down for nine whole minutes? How could
they bring themselves to do it?

You can’t have climate change without sacrifice zones, and you can’t have
sacrifice zones without disposable people, and you can't have disposable
people without racism.

During the street protests and marches of the past two weeks, many people
carried signs that read “Racism Is Killing Us.” It’s no exaggeration to say
that racism and white supremacy harm all of us, because in addition to
robbing us of our humanity, racism is also killing the planet we all share.

An idea—a long-overdue realization—is growing in the environmental
movement. It goes something like this: “We’ll never stop climate change
without ending white supremacy.” This argument has entered the outdoor
recreation and conservation space thanks to the leadership of Black,
Indigenous, and other people of color in the climate justice movement. The
idea has taken on new force as folks in the mainstream environmental
movement do our best to show up for George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Tony
McDade, and all the Black people still living and subject to police

I know that a lot of people are struggling with the thought that addressing
the environmental crises must involve dismantling white supremacy. At
Sierra Club meetings, some people hear me say something like that and
think, “Damn, fighting climate change wasn’t hard enough already? Now we
have to end racism and white supremacy too? Seriously, man?

Full at https://www.sierraclub.org/sierra/racism-killing-planet
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