On Collective Mourning and Protests

I wrote this piece after the non-indictment of Eric Garner’s killer, back in December of 2014. It was published on another site that has since ceased publications. But, as I head back out to protest yet more police killings of yet more black and brown people, I ask myself again why I am compelled to do this. Which reminded me that I wrote a whole thing about it.

The point is not only to stand up, to fight back, to be counted. It is to engage in an act of collective mourning. Crying alone with my office door closed in the minutes between meetings is not healing, or helpful or, really much of anything. At least for me, it’s only by being surrounded by fellow mourners, by collectively feeling the full depth of our fear and sorrow, only in that mass scream of resistance, that I know how to find my hope again, so I can wake up tomorrow, get out of bed, and keep fighting. Continue reading