With the recent protests happening around the world after the murders of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor and Ahmaud Arbery by police officers, many in New Hampshire are outraged and taking to the streets to protest police brutality and systemic racism. Many are masked to protect themselves against COVID-19, but are rightly prioritizing the epidemic of police and state-sanctioned violence against black and brown people.

From the beginning of this country, the ruling class has worked to divide groups of people in order to remain in power. In response to Bacon’s Rebellion — a 1676 multi-racial uprising of the colonial servant and labor class of Virginia — the colonial landowners enacted codes that granted privileges for white servants, while limiting rights of Africans and formalizing chattel slavery. This is the historical origin of white privilege. White supremacy has led this country to remain segregated, divided, and unequal.

Laws and institutions continue to oppress black and brown people to this day. Do not take the bait when you see the mainstream media spinning this movement as “looting and rioting.” This is a movement for long overdue racial justice. If you value property over people, then you are falling into the trap of racism and dehumanization.

In the words of activist Tamika D. Mallory, “Don’t talk to us about looting. Ya’ll are the looters! America has looted black people! America looted the Native Americans when they first came here, so looting is what you do. We learned it from you. We learned violence from you! So if you want us to do better, then you do better!”

Study the history of this country and take action to fight for racial justice!

OLIVIA BREGANI

240 Old Harrisville Road

Marlborough