Sunday, August 30, 2009
Last week i headed down to New Orleans for the second time this year with NY2NO. My previous trip in December/January was full of incredible experiences, shock, anger, disbelief, and was concluded with a passion for justice and social awareness. I came back this week with a lot of the same emotions i felt in December although at this point in regards to racism, sexism, environmental abuse, and classism i feel an incredible sensation of intangibility in terms of moving forward. The next thing coming up in my life (School) seems to be one of the most counter productive things possible. I want to feel as though i am building and participating in a movement not just creating a false mentality of individual righteousness.
In the Lower Ninth Ward the urban blight rendered by Katrina is just a physical portrayal of the neighborhoods need for a strong community. This need comes out in several other ways that were established long before the storm ranging from incarceration rates, literacy, health, the presence of drugs.. the list goes on. Where the disconnect between the community needs and the source we have chosen as americans to put all of our faith into; our heirarchial beurocratic bullshit government, lays in institutionalized racism and classism. Spending time at Our School At Blair Grocery a community center and urban farm founded by Nat Turner, which is focused on creating sustainable community empowerment in the lower ninth was a beautifull thing to be involved in. The school/community center which is on its way to model a path of effective and alternative projects that restablish the connection of the residents with their community, earth, and power as individuals. This Was an incredible thing to see progress so drastically in a 6 month period. It gave me faith in grassroots movements and made me feel a drastic need to bring the principles back with me to NYC.