How the Powerful Co-Opt Racial Justice to Amass More Power (Part I)

A New Series on the Internal Work of Justice

“While we see anger and violence in the streets of our country, the real battlefield is inside our bodies. If we are to survive as a country, it is inside our bodies where this conflict needs to be resolved.” — Resmaa Menakem

Today’s post: How the Powerful Co-Opt Racial Justice to Amass More Power

“America is the story of powerful people struggling to keep their disproportionate amount of power from people who are struggling for the power to be free.” — Ibram Kendi

“U.S. government officials realized that their ability to sell democracy to the Third World was seriously hampered by continuing racial injustice at home. Accordingly, efforts to promote civil rights within the United States were consistent with, and important to, the more central U.S. mission of fighting world communism.” — Mary Dudziak

This pattern of political motivation, delay in implementing civil rights laws, and the lack of enforcement and activation suggests that rather than being sincere efforts in advancing justice, these decisions co-opted the purported equality, well-being, and flourishing of Black people as a mechanism of securing and advancing power.

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