The 7 Jobs Capitalism Asks of All of Us:
1. Measure Self Worth by Work: Don’t believe in the inherent goodness of people. Instead decide that everyone’s worth is only as much as they achieve.
2. Accept that Oppression is the Norm: This starts with adultism the moment we are born and conditions us to accept that all other forms of oppression and privilege are just a fact of life, for the rest of our lives.
3. Believe the Dream: Believe that to be American means that your success is eventual, and that any failing is your own individual fault.
4. Get Numb and Numb-er: Close off your feelings and just suck it up. Find a form of addiction that is either secret enough or socially acceptable enough so that you can get by. Then tsk tsk anyone with a less hidden addiction, blame them for the problem and offer them no support.
5. Isolate: grow increasingly more distant from people and community. Develop a nuclear family from whom you may attempt to get all of your needs met, and lash out at them when it doesn’t work.
6. Disassociate from your Body: Make your mind and body separate entities. Find pieces of yourself to love and pieces of yourself to hate. Attempt to buy things to close the gap. Tell yourself that you only deserve rest, pleasure and play when you’ve worked for it.
7. Assimilate: Strive to look like, act like, and be like the typical white U.S.-er you are supposed to be. Forget your history, forget your religion, forget your ancestors: they are no longer a part of this narrative. Stop trying to pursue the art, community and visions you once had: they no longer matter.
The 7 Forms of Resistance All Around Us:
1. Movements: Collectives, groups, organizations, neighbors and friends can get together and learn about oppression and envision liberation. Organizing has worked over and over again throughout history and will continue to.
2. Self Care and Community Care: We can decide we are worth it and we are vital just because we are alive.
3. Tell Our Stories: We can tell our personal stories and the collective story about the white supremacy, colonialism, patriarchy and christian hegemony that founded this country. With our stories we can refuse to be lied to.
4. Healing: We can use therapy, support groups, co-counseling, somatic practices, art therapy and more to get ever bigger, bolder, stronger and more powerful. We can use the wisdom gained from our healing to create better policy and support communal healing through practices like reparations for slavery.
5. Connection: We can dare to cry, laugh and share our real feelings with all of the people in our lives without placing a limit on the number of people our hearts can love.
6. Love: We can refuse to buy into the idea of spreading self-hate. Even in our hardest moments we can remember we are a human with a human body and we deserve the goodness all humans deserve.
7. Art and Culture: Artists can rise up everywhere all the time to say we will not accept this world, we will build a better one. We can choose to learn about our ancestors, their histories and traditions and find ways to reclaim them afresh for ourselves.
I believe that we will win.