Ending Pride Month in Truth
Telling the truth during dangerous times.
But can it really be a “Happy Friday” when the U.S. Supreme Court has made it unmistakably clear that it will restore the United States of America to its unabashed white supremacist capitalist patriarchal glory?
From ruling that evidence of innocence is not enough to overturn a guilty verdict, even in the case of the death penalty, to determining that private religious institutions are entitled to public funds, to deciding that states cannot prevent people from carrying guns out in the open, to now officially overturning the right to an abortion, it seems like we’re living in the dangerous future that Octavia Butler predicted.
We know what’s coming next; the three judges who dissented have warned us: “And no one should be confident that this majority is done with its work.” They are coming for our voting rights, speech rights, Miranda rights, marriage rights, healthcare rights, housing rights, and every other right that they wish to snatch from us. Shit, they might even overturn the 13th Amendment—with Massa’s Favorite Nig leading the charge. What a disappointment to the Ancestors that man is. What an unholy disappointment.
These, dear family, are indeed The Parable Times. None of us are safe.
How do we save ourselves and each other from the horrors in store? You may feel powerless, but you are not powerless. The U.S. Supreme Court has declared war again you. If ever there was a time to actively and intentionally defy unjust laws, surely that time is upon us. This is the tipping point, y’all. I’m not a fan of binaries, but this one seems inevitable: We gon’ fight back or we gon’ die.
Which means that more than ever, progressive thinkers must devote all mindwork to counter-strategy, activists must direct all energy to resistance by every means necessary, and artists must direct all endeavors toward truth in the face of all risks. As Ancestor Toni Morrison said: "This is precisely the time when artists go to work. There is no time for despair, no place for self-pity, no need for silence, no room for fear. We speak, we write, we do language. That is how civilizations heal."
In that vein, if you are in or near the Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania area, I wanted to let you know that I will be appearing for the very first time at the renowned August Wilson African-American Cultural Center (AWAACC) on Wednesday, June 29, 2022 at 7 p.m.
This event is in honor of the Center’s TRUTHSayers series, which has previously featured legendary individuals such as Mae Jemison, Angela Davis, Nikki Giovanni, Michael Eric Dyson, and Tarana Burke. What giant footprints to walk behind!
I will be in a 45-minute conversation with poet, art writer, and librettist extraordinaire Jessica Lanay, followed by a 15-minute Q&A with the audience. We will have to discuss the ways in which the country is, and has always been, committed to harm.
Afterwards, I will be available to sign copies of The Prophets, which will be available for purchase courtesy of the White Whale Bookstore, for anyone wishing to own an autographed copy.
Tickets are $28 each and available at the AWAACC box office.
I’ve never been to Pittsburgh before and I’m very much looking forward to seeing some of the sights, looking at new faces, meeting new people, and connecting in an era of profound disconnection—masked up, of course.
I hope to share in loving community with you. Being in community is the most beautiful way to end Pride Month and is one of the antidotes, I think, to how this country has tarnished itself by attempting to tarnish the spirit of liberation.
For information about all of my future events, in-person and virtual, please visit the Son of Baldwin website’s EVENTS page.
Please try to enjoy your weekend.
Peace and blessings,