BLM protests at Sanders rally

I think there’s evidence to show that the real harm is to Black Lives Matter. If anything, Sanders is trending higher than ever with more name recognition due to the stunt. I’m keeping track on Facebook and the response from POC for Bernie is overwhelmingly positive while it’s overwhelmingly negative for BLM. Facebook has vastly more real people accounts than Twitter does, so it’s a much more reliable bellwether, in my opinion, that’s much more devoid of trolls, sock puppets, etc. we tend to see at TrollZone Twitter.

I’ve documented this to some extent here:

Since I’m an avid supporter of BLM, I do find this setback for the movement very upsetting and frustrating and hope that they get some changes in leadership, etc. before more mistakes like the kind of shrill hyperbole used against Sanders we saw the other day is repeated.

The more people learn about Sanders, the more he gains and the more Clinton and the other Republicans wane. The more BLM exclusively attacks Sanders like this without focusing at all on Clinton, the more people suspect they’re partisan driven to support Clinton. This will become a growing problem as more Americans find out that Clinton’s billionaire donor also just so happens to be the founder and chairman of the organization that arranged funding for Black Lives Matter.


Crash and #Bern
How presidential elections are detrimental to movement building.

The fact the first real pushback from leftists against Black Lives Matter is around the 2016 election reveals how electoralism can induce activists to side with elites against the grassroots. Many Sanders supporters will be inclined to ignore if not defend every bad position he takes because they believe his campaign is a means to the greater end of advancing socialism.

Leaving aside Sanders is pushing for Keynesianism, not socialism or even social democracy, his campaign is antithetical to movement building. It’s top down, centered on one person, with no space for popular input to discuss his political failings, organization building, the limits of electoralism, or other strategies. After 2016 Sanders will not hand over his organization with its valuable lists and apparatus to the left. Past experience—Jesse Jackson’s Rainbow Coalition, Howard Dean’s Democracy for America, Barack Obama’s Organizing for Action—shows candidates keep control over their organization. Even Ralph Nader’s presidential bid in 2000 under the Green Party banner failed to benefit the Greens despite the 2.9 million votes he won.


First, I don’t really identify as a liberal [eta] but I’d guess I’m pegged as that because of my political and social beliefs.

I like Sanders because he’s the most consistent candidate and he’s shown a willingness to learn. I think those are important. Is he perfect? No. Would his presidency fix things? No. But it would be a sea change on a number of issues, including this specific one. Electing someone who self identified as a social democrat would indeed speak volumes to the rest of the world.

I do agree that many liberals (and progressives) are indeed all the things you’ve said.

I do think you’re conflating Sanders and his supporters, however.

I think the best way to do this is for groups with specific goals continue to do what they are doing. BLM needs to continue to show up and to start a dialogue with Sanders if there is a specific direct they want to see him go. I, unlike others in this thread have no problem with what they are doing. Like i said, this is what democracy SHOULD be, not mindless support of a candidate [eta] or a party or ideology. In order to get candidates to where we want them, people have to apply pressure. This is one way of doing so.

I don’t think that’s fair or called for. This is a life and death issue. I know you’re not here in the states, but they aren’t fuckwits. They are the future of democracy when the majority of their white, middle class peers are unengaged and coddled. They deserved our support and they deserve support from candidates who call themselves progressive. Full stop. I actually appreciate that they continue to put pressure on his campaign.


How does he compare to McGovern? (and are we lucky that the Republican candidate isn’t going to be Tricky Dick?)

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Pig’s arse. I stand by calling the BLM activists attacking Sanders fuckwits, 100%. And I apologise, not for baldly misrepresenting you as you imagine, but for a mistaken recollection, clearly stated as unsure, in my struggle to understand where the fuck you’re coming from. I’m not the one dodging around here.

So, tell us: what’s wrong with Sanders? And what the fuck is right about the bullshit BLM’s inflicted on him, FFS?

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POC are very disappointed overall with Obama in this regard.

[quote=“daneel, post:8, topic:63379”]
Is Sanders going to be better, or worse?
[/quote]Vastly better than Obama, in my opinion. He’s been dedicated to civil rights for decades and nothing has changed in that regard in recent memory. Sanders was caught off guard at first by the hostility (directed at him), but I think he kept his cool this time and is ready to kick some redneck, racist ass after he’s elected (in cahoots with grassroots).

[quote=“daneel, post:8, topic:63379”]
Is he too focussed on fiscal issues to get the minority support he needs to beat Clinton?
[/quote]I think that’s more of a media problem. Sanders had very literally addressed police brutality before the first BLM protest, but it wasn’t properly covered. Sanders supporters are taking care of that task via social media since the corporate media won’t do their jobs.

That said, we’re already seeing Sanders evolve his language on the issue if anyone listens to his event speeches since the first BLM protest. Frankly, I’m much more worried about the BLM movement losing support after their blunder the other day than any damage to Sanders. BLM is getting torn apart by POC while Sanders is getting overwhelming approval (as shown here).

I’m hoping the BLM will quickly adjust strategy before even more approval and support is lost. I’m an ardent supporter of BLM and I find it terrible that it’s losing its way by attacking Sanders while giving Clinton a partisan-appearing pass that’s fomenting distrust and frustration.

[quote=“daneel, post:8, topic:63379”]
is she getting that support instead? If so, what is she doing better?)
[/quote]To be blunt, Clinton is a great liar and she’s supported by a great team of liars. If she’s elected, I think there’s plenty of signs that she’ll inevitably throw BLM under the bus (for the most part) and answer to her corporatist donors.

Her record betrays her current pandering, however she has a complicit media that’s attempting to conceal it for her. This is a battle between grassroots information spreading and corporate media protectionism. I honestly don’t know who’ll win, but by looking at all the incredible, early gains Sanders is already making I certainly think he has a shot.


Do you think some kind of official and invited inclusion at Bernie’s rallies is an endgame for this phase of their overall direction?

Or should it be other more established groups that are invited for inclusion? Does specifically including BLM alone (or for that matter any one group) make a partisan statement to other groups campaigning for elevated awareness of justice for and inclusion of POC in the electoral process?


Sure, I understand the gravity of the issue, but the sheer amount of misdirection here is so goddamn galling.

First, they’re targeting Sanders, the last guy to deserve this. Then, when he’s like, I tell you what, you can use my platform, you can have the mic when I’m done, they lose their shit, as if they had any reason to expect being given the mic in the first place, beyond Bernie’s magnanimity.

Why don’t they see how that shit would fly amongst the folks who are the ones actually engaged in the quasi-genocide, taking money from private prison companies, etc? I’ll be 100% behind BLM then.

ETA: see the problem here? I meant to say I’ll be 100% behind the BLM activists, but forgetting the qualifier meant it looked like I wasn’t 100% behind the BLM movement… time for a new hashtag maybe. #humandecency, how about that?


I’m frustrated with BLM for various reasons, but I think they did have a right to expect to be given the mic to some extent. Sanders has promised to work with grassroots and that’s part of the process. That said, I agree with you that the BLM has screwed up in their approach with Sanders and I hope (for their sake) the BLM movement either changes leadership or has a leadership that’s capable of evolving the strategy with changes over time.

The shit-show the other day didn’t reflect that strong kind of leadership and adaptability that’s needed. For example, the people screaming at Sanders didn’t seem to acknowledge that Sanders had literally just brought someone from the BLM movement into an important role within his campaign among all his speeches at recent, previous events that very directly addressed police brutality.

[quote=“Kimmo, post:28, topic:63379”]
Why don’t they see how that shit would fly amongst the folks who are the ones actually engaged in the quasi-genocide, taking money from private prison companies, etc? I’ll be 100% behind BLM then.
[/quote]Yeah, seriously. They need to approach Hillary Clinton about that, but I do wonder if there’s some political strings attached to their funding since Hillary’s billionaire donor is also tied to BLM movement’s funding.


Given that a whole bunch of people turned up to listen to a presidential candidate talk about income and wealth inequality, it looks like the ladies who grabbed the mike did a fine job of rudely derailing the discussion … :disappointed:

Maybe Sanders needs a ‘Don’t push your Luckdragon’, eh @Falcor?


so long as it’s another hashtag on top of #blm then sure, detracting focus from the core principle of blm in answer to their rhetoric is counter-prodcutive.

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No, they should stick with BLM, for sure. I don’t think it’s misdirection on their part. it’s sheer frustration at being victims of state violence for so very long.

it’s not a top down movement, and that’s important, because THAT’S ACTUALLY DEMOCRACY. Voting is not democracy. Going to political rallies is not democracy - not in America, anyway. Getting out on the street for this is actual democracy. Like I said, I think that Sanders givng them the mic was a good thing. I think he needs to show solidarity by aligning with them and their style of organizing more.

people are being shot for the color of their skin. I care about income inequality too, but this is life and death. I can recognize why there is this urgency there. Do you? If someone was shooting your family members, systematically, would YOU want to talk about income inequality or would you want other people to address your concerns?

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Y’know, I’d really like to see progressives align under a banner of decency.

Something to explicitly call out the right on their attempt to monopolise a claim on it with their moral majoritarian, lazy religious bullshit. Something that calls attention to the heinous indecency of right-wing, reactionary American values, and counters it with a dose of utilitarian reasoning about reducing the most suffering for the most people.

I particularly liked the bit in one of Sanders’ speeches about family values, and I don’t think I imagined the vast ‘FUCK YEAH’ I felt from the audience… IMO it’s time for the pendulum to swing on the moral majority - time for one that’s both rather than neither.


It seems to me that part of the problem here is that some conflate race and class, as discussed in the article posted by @FoolishOwl. They really are not the same thing, especially not in the US. I know, it’s easy, as a white person, to dismiss race as being a real problem and to think that if there are more economic opportunities in black communities, the problem will be solved.

But it’s come to the surface in recent years in incredibly visceral and real ways that race, despite the civil rights movement is in fact still a major problem in the US. Read Coates, read Cobb, go back to the basic texts of civil rights, go back to Dubois… too little has changed over the years. nearly a century after Dubois said that the problem of the 20th century is the color line, the problem of the 21st century CONTINUES to be the color line.

So… what can Sanders do to get on the right page?


I don’t disagree but like I said, I think it’s an issue that requires attention in addition to the BLM movement.

The criticism that the current rhetoric of BLM is drawing is for sure conditioned by the fragmentary nature of the liberal project and I can see how a unified, or at least a more unified, approach would benefit everybody but I agree with @Mindysan33 that the engagement by BLM with democratic protestation is important and needs focus from the political machine.

Concurrent projects that enhance one another.


Intersectionality, right? But racism is something that is specific and critical attention right now. It keeps getting swept aside for other issues. Given my privileged position as someone who teaches history to young folks, I can understand why. When you tell the story of Emmett Till for example, it creates a visceral reaction because people identify. These kids that are the victims of the criminal justice system deserve more and better. They deserve all that my own daughter is getting. How do we create that without brushing aside some concerns or others?

From that article:

It is tempting to use class as an umbrella covering race because it is simpler to say Wall Street is the root of all evil. Nonetheless, most leftists understand economism is as much of a dead end as identity politics. Decent-paying jobs and free public education would not have saved Tamir Rice, John Crawford, Sandra Bland, and countless others obliterated by a society that defines their existence as a threat.

I’m not a liberal.

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BLM does have a top-down structure combined with bottom-up grassroots elements similar to what we found with the Tea Party. The same billionaire donor for Hillary Clinton’s campaign is also the founder and current chief of the organization that made funding available for Black Lives Matter.

Unlike a much more bottom-up grassroots movement with funding we see with Sanders’ campaign, BLM is tied to a billionaire’s organization similar to how the Tea Party was tied to the Koch brothers. If the monolithic funding source is cut… they are top-down fucked.

A wealthy asshole can’t cut Sanders’ funding because we are legion.

I’d love to see BLM reach your “ACTUAL DEMOCRACY” ideal, but it’s not there yet and won’t get there without proper leadership due to its current (in my opinion) flawed, corporatist structure.

Frankly, the rate BLM is going by royally pissing off POC, I could see it break up and away into truly bottom-up grassroots factions in the near future. If they don’t flounder, that would be for the best as long as funding from individuals can start picking up the slack and quick (but I don’t see signs of that right now for various logistical reasons).

[quote=“Mindysan33, post:32, topic:63379”]
Voting is not democracy. Going to political rallies is not democracy - not in America, anyway. Getting out on the street for this is actual democracy.
[/quote]I think all of the above and much more are the vital methods for getting us closer to a more representative democracy within our struggling republic. That’s what we’re doing with the Sanders campaign and it’s been quite successful thus far aside from various hiccups.

[quote=“Mindysan33, post:32, topic:63379”]
Like I said, I think that Sanders givng them the mic was a good thing. I think he needs to show solidarity by aligning with them and their style of organizing more.
[/quote]Yes to solidarity but HELL NO to organizing like the current incarnation of BLM. If anything, the BLM needs to become more like our grassroots movement before they self-destruct like the Tea Party has.

Sanders very wisely tapped a Black Lives Matter activist as his Campaign Press Secretary even before the latest BLM blunder the other day. I think Sanders should continue to bring BLM into our greater, grassroots structure, but he sure as shit shouldn’t start relying on billionaires for the funding like BLM has done.

BLM is one of many grassroots arms that’s going to need to better learn how solidarity works. Otherwise, other anti-police brutality grassroots orgs will step up and we’ll take it from there. That’s the beauty of our grassroots movements. You can cut off one head, but we’re a hydra all clawing our way with one body to similar, symbiotic goals.


Me neither!

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Citation? It seems like the founders aren’t billionaires by any stretch of the imagination:

And the other founder doesn’t have a wiki entry, but instead runs this organization:

There has certainly been corporate cooption of the movement since it popped up (much as there was with , but it was far more authentic than the tea party. I think you’re getting bad information on the movement…

And I’m sorry, but comparing activists WHO ARE TIRED OF SEEING THEIR FRIENDS AND FAMILY MEMBERS DYING to the tea party, is just… that’s just crazy.

[ETA] Again, just point this out… there are a number of communities when we use the term people of color and these different communites have different experiences with racism that we should address. But black lives matter is about the black community specifically. This is important to understand, I think. Yes, they want Sanders to address their specific issues, because it is their lives that are on the line.

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