First off, just let me say that I dislike violence. I say this as someone who was thinking of becoming a boxer before my current health ailments from living in a ‘sacrifice zone.’ I take inspiration from Chris Hedges, though there are some aspects that I disagree with. I am not totally anti-war, because unfortunately, there are times where one must defend themselves. My community, being in a sacrifice zone and being constantly ignored by the local government and our federal government agencies that are supposed to honor their word and protect us from toxic industrial companies in our neighborhood. We are having violence perpetrated against us by these toxic industrial companies.

Some may argue that this does not constitute as ‘violence.’ Yet, what do we call it when toxic industrial companies poison local communities and destroy habitats of animals? If this is not violence, what is it? Is our government not playing a role in this? What is it called when our children are being poisoned, our families, our loved ones, for no other reason than we are too poor to live other places? Or because we love our neighborhood, and want to protect it, and are willing to not stand for this bullshit any longer.

Growing up, I was taught in school that Martin Luther King was good and that Malcolm X was bad. They teach more about King in school, because he was non-violent, but I think that Malcolm X also had many valid view points as well. He was tired of the way black people were being treated and decided to do something about it. Many times, marginalized people aren’t taken seriously until they get violent, and then it’s “can you believe that this is happening?” Yes, actually, I can. The reason for this is that if you do not address the public and go to parts of society where things are desperate for people, you will never understand the underlying issues. You will never understand how someone like Trump or Hitler was able to take power.

True freedom is living free of corporate conglomerates that pay you so shitty that you are forced to work 2-3 jobs just to be able to take care of your family. True freedom is growing your own food in a community and feeding yourself with your own work in your community, where you can say “i helped make that!” This is the type of life I try and prescribe to, and a life I want for others. Strong, independent communities is how we limit power of corporations, where we limit the power of politics and instead live in communities where we all have to come together and rely on each other.

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