I’ve written a lot about the Kheprw Institute (KI). This community devoted to mentoring Black youth has been a great source for me, and North Meadow Friends, to learn more about environmental and other social justice issues, and how to rebuild communities that have been devastated by economic collapse, racism, and the lack of resources.
KI has been willing to partner with North Meadow Friends as part of Quaker Social Change Ministry.
One of the great things KI does is hold open community book discussions as a way to stimulate conversations about our situation and what can be done about it.
Today we will be continuing a discussion of Grace Lee Boggs’ book, The Next American Revolution. I’m glad to be able to share this short video, where KI members discuss this. The video opens with Imhotep Adisa, director of KI, speaking.
The Next American Revolution: Sustainable Activism for the Twenty-First Century by Grace Lee Boggs, Scott Kurashige
“The next American Revolution, at this stage in our history, is not principally about jobs or health insurance or making it possible for more people to realize the American Dream of upward mobility. It is about acknowledging that we Americans have enjoyed middle-class comforts at the expense of other peoples all over the world. It is about living the kind of lives that will not only slow down global warming but also end the galloping inequality both inside this country and between the Global North and the Global South. It is about creating a new American Dream whose goal is a higher Humanity instead of the higher standard of living dependent on Empire. It is about practicing a new, more active, global, and participatory concept of citizenship. It is about becoming the change we wish to see in the world. The courage, commitment, and strategies required for this kind of revolution are very different from those required to storm the Winter Palace or the White House. Instead of viewing the U.S. people as masses to be mobilized in increasingly aggressive struggles for higher wages, better jobs, or guaranteed health care, we must have the courage to challenge ourselves to engage in activities that build a new and better world by improving the physical, psychological, political, and spiritual health of ourselves, our families, our communities, our cities, our world, and our planet. This means that it is not enough to organize mobilizations that call on Congress and the president to end the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. We must also challenge the American people to examine why 9/11 happened and why so many people around the world understand, even though they do not support the terrorists, that they were driven to these acts by frustration and anger at the U.S. role in the world, such as supporting the Israeli occupation of Palestine and dictatorships in the Middle East and treating whole countries, the peoples of the world, and Nature only as resources enabling us to maintain our middle-class way of life. We have to help the American people find the moral strength to recognize that—although no amount of money can compensate for the countless deaths and indescribable suffering that our criminal invasion and occupation have caused the Iraqi people—we, the American people, have a responsibility to make the material sacrifices that will enable them to begin rebuilding their infrastructure. We have to help the American people grow their souls enough to recognize that because we have been consuming 25 percent of the planet’s fossil fuels even though we are less than 5 percent of the world’s population, we are the ones who must take the first big steps to reduce greenhouse emissions. We are the ones who must begin to live more simply so that others can simply live. Moreover, we urgently need to begin creating ways to live more frugally and more cooperatively NOW because with times getting harder, we can easily slip into scapegoating “the other” and goose-stepping behind a nationalist leader, as the good Germans did in the 1930s”