The right to resist government tyranny and establish sovereignty belongs to white people only
Nothing angers and shakes this country at its core more than a Black or Brown person disloyal to this nation.
No matter how this country, its government and its people, has treated communities of color, specifically Black and indigenous people, intentionally, by design, for centuries, we yet have to be subjected and submissive to it. We have to temper our criticisms and our anger at our mistreatment with assuring statements of our patriotism to it, with “But don’t worry, I love being American, I LOVE THIS NATION, etc, etc.” We have to show our gratitude for how lucky we are, because, you know, it isn’t all bad, and anyways, it could be so much worse (much like a victim of abuse will speak of their abusers good attributes, lest you think it’s all bad). America’s hatred of our resistance, our protest, our rioting is rooted in that nagging fear that we may wish to defect, that we are not faithful to our abusers.
As someone who is, effectively, not faithful to her abusers, and has no spare love for this nation, I have to be careful with how I say that. It is something that instantly sets off “TERRORIST!?!!?!?” alarms in the American citizens’ head. Many of you even I am sure are made uncomfortable by my saying I’m anti-state, anti-government. After all, “They’re anti-American, they’re anti-government” are some of the first derailing and dismissive comments activists and organizers like me often gets, are considered the worst things a young leftist activist can be accused of. Disloyal, treasonous, tyrannical, terrorist, terrorist, terrorist. Since this nation is flawless, perfect, just, a bastion of freedom and liberty, never wrong, and requires no absolution, what else could a person who defies it or challenges it be but evil? Or worse, bitter, over-idealistic, dramatic, immature-all things, by the way, we tend to accuse children of. (The Black and Indigenous person is America’s eternal ward and most of this country’s struggle with racism is its struggle with surrendering it’s paternalistic attitude towards them.)
But the Bundy Brothers, these actual terrorist and political extremists who do not take issue with this country because they want to dismantle white supremacy but because they want more free reign of it, miss the days when they had even more power and authority than they yet do as cis straight white men, they can be anti-government. They can say, explicitly, that they defy and do not recognize the government. That the government has overstepped on them and their rights to land that actually doesn’t belong to them, as it is indigenous. That they want things to go a different way. They can act on their beliefs and found not guilty of all charges for their actions. Time and time again we see this with white right wing factions and political groups, from the Tea Party to Trump supporters. They can express their real feelings about this country not being great for not serving their wants and needs, and the right they have outside of the government’s authority, and even levy threats towards any politician or governing body who they believe might infringe on their rights.
After all, it’s their nation. They are the patriarchs of this country, the ruling class, the fathers if you will. They are allowed to have an issue with the government. This country was founded on the premise of white colonialist entitlement to land being the only true and rightful form of “protesting” an “resistance”. As such, the Bundys are validated in their secessionist values and anti-government ideology. The rest of us, even those indigenous to this land, are just petulant children who need to fall in line with what we’ve been given and stop resisting.
This fact rings especially true as yesterday, the same day that the Bundy Brothers were found not guilty, Indigenous protectors at Standing Rock were having their camps raided, their protesting and resistance against the Dakota Access Pipeline violently besieged by those who exist only to protect the interests of white supremacy and capitalism. The people who belong to this land, who act on behalf of its best interests and those of their people (to the benefit of the rest of us as well), are being cruelly attacked and dragged out of their camps.
We can politely, meekly ask for progressive reform at best, but only the white men are allowed to throw tea in the harbor.