Occupy Everywhere Lecture Naomi Klein Michael Moore The New School

 

And at the very same time, it has to be like this with all the people in communities, working people, unions, a homeless people, tenants, immigrants who have been struggling for so long to make particular things happen, and to get back some of the stuff that was stolen from us.

 

So at the very same time, you have to have this kind of distance and autonomy.  And be operating like, like in this way.

 

Nothing can get in between Occupiers and ah…  all of the people who have been fighting for a long time.

 

On race and diversity.  The, the main thing I wanna say is that.  Diversity by itself is not enough.

 

It’s not actually enough for the Occupy Movement to be racially diverse, which it is.

 

I know many, many people of color who are very invested in their local Occupations.  Who have shown up, who have slept on site…who are bringing food and supplies, and water.  And ah leading marches and so on.

 

So the people of color, from my perception whether it started that way or not.  We are there now and we are part of the movement, and we claim the movement.

 

And yet it isn’t enough that there are simply bodies of color and faces of color in the park, in the plaza, in any plaza.

 

Ah the real question is:  Are those people who are there able to influence the agendas of local occupations in particular?  Are they able to help occu-people, who are occu-, who are attracted to Occupy Wall Street get moved back out to all of the organizations and campaigns, and ah efforts to really win things.

 

Because I know you are attracting a ton people that are gonna do work.  They you know can’t hang out at the park all day long.

 

There must be other things that need to happen. Uhm well, maybe you can all day long. But the next day seems like me, there is some room to make something happen.

 

And uhm, it’s like you know when you go to a party.  You get invited to a party and maybe you like the person pretty well and respect the person who had invited you to party.

 

You go to the party and you don’t like the music, but you have no ability to change it that makes your head pound.

 

So the DJ doesn’t take request and the iPod is like glued into the system, and you can’t get it out.

 

If you, if that’s the case, you don’t like the music and you have no ability to change it.  You are not gonna hang out at that party very long.  You’re gonna leave and either make your own party or, or go home I guess.

 

Uhm so the question is not really…  Can you get the people of color to the party?  It’s can they change the music, ah in a way that helps them stay at the party?

 

And I think that if Occupy Wall Street is gonna cause this public shift is really significant part of that shift has to be…

 

The ability to recognize the role that racial discrimination, racial exploitation, racial hierarchy played in getting us to this very depression.   Not just historically…

 

 

Crowd:  (claps)

 

 

Rinku Sen: but 10 – 15, 5 years ago, last month.  Ah the ways in which red lining and mortgage theft, and predatory lending and long term employment discrimination, and housing discrimination…

 

Got us to the place where our economic systems do not work for anybody, including struggling white people.

 

That didn’t, ah struggling white people weren’t many have always been struggling.

 

But there’s you know I was saying in the green room. That the 99% used to be the 98% and somewhere in that 1% are some white people, you know.

 

 

Crowd:  (laughs)

 

 

Rinku Sen:  And they would not have, they wouldn’t be moving to the 99% if in fact there have not been a whole set of mechanisms and structures that were actually designed to take stuff from people of color.

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