† Criminal InJustice is a weekly series devoted to taking action against inequities in the U.S. criminal justice system. Nancy A. Heitzeg, Professor of Sociology and Race/Ethnicity, and author of The School-to- Prison Pipeline: Education, Discipline and Racialized Double Standards, is the Editor of CI. Kay Whitlock, co-author of Queer (In)Justice and Considering Hate, is co-founder of CI. Criminal Injustice is published every Wednesday at 6 pm CST.
Editor’s Note from nancy a heitzeg
The recent and massive DDoS attacks left me wondering just what we all would really do in the prolonged absence of the Internet. Activism and so-called organizing have become so dependent upon it — even as it has become dominated by a virtual swirl of instant “experts” and branded celebrity activists, many of whom have centered self-promotion at the expense of movement goals.
And then there is the well-intended rest of us – measuring our impact in Prufrockian coffee spoons of retweets and #Fedbook “likes”. Hoping, we will finally type the words or post the image that will cut through the mediated clutter, and move someone, anyone, to truly intersectional, sustained liberatory action in the real world. All, while contributing to our own surveillance.
For those of us committed to abolition, there is an added urgency as Election 2016 careens to a close. Will Raw Fascism or the Neoliberal Death of a Thousand Cuts prevail? Perhaps the latter actually poses the greatest challenge as “bipartisan criminal justice reform” looms as likely. The Smoke and Mirrors of what is actually profit-driven expansion of the carceral state easily deceives, and even apparently radical projects such as The 13th are easily turned to its’ service.
Either outcome will be a daunting one. More daunting too given that struggles for human liberation can no longer ignore the fact that the planet is burning, and all our efforts must take account of this. We must Open the Cages and Open Them All. And too few, really, are ready for that.
So I don’t have a lot else to say right now, but fortunately someone does. Let me draw your attention to a series from Abolition: A Journal of Insurgent Politics – ‘Abolitionism and the US Elections.” The first two posts are well worth a read and stay tuned all for the rest:
- Abolitionist Democracy: Dispelling Fear and Loathing* in the 2016 Campaign by Joy James
Until next week – Carry On…………….