The following post is short and sweet. The Black Power Mixtapes stands as an important piece of film because of its revealing of precious revolutionary history. Angela Davis speaks in this clip about what violence is and how Black militants view the subject. She makes the essential point that we must understand what the term truly means. Is property destruction (breaking a Footlocker window) during political rebellions violence? Is fighting back against the fascist police violence? Is stealing from a corporate store violence? Davis answers “no”. These acts, which are usually so quickly pointed out by the liberals and conservatives as acts of deviance and destruction are reactions to a systemic injustice. They are reactions to the true violence of the society.
Black folk have been the subject of Capitalism’s dehumanizing violence from our initial encounters with the West. Violence is the ghetto, the slave trade, the police state, inadequate schools, the prison system, the courts, welfare, patriarchy, capitalism, racism, homophobia, unhealthy foods, a lack of nature in your surroundings, the demeaning and degrading of all that your culture admires, being trapped behind cement walls and green shades. Those things are violent acts. So when we talk about what violence is, it is important to remind ourselves of the entire picture. The entire scope.