Posted by : Halima Khait Tuesday, November 22, 2005

In the spirit of those lost in the Paris Riots
I can't even take credit for this theory so I'm going to go ahead and say that this is taken from Mumia Abu-Jamal's book We Want Freedom. Stripped down to basics, he says that most riots are an attempt for a group of people to either gain or maintain social status. In history, most riots initiated by Caucasians were meant to insure their status as the dominant race. Most riots initiated by those of African descent were meant to fight oppressive standards of living (this is happening in Paris as I write this). Mumia Abu-Jamal argues that the media has given the word "riot" a negative connotation and connected it with people of color. He argues that the word "Resistance" should be used instead. I agree. I think a clear distinction should be made between riot and resistance. If people are involved in nonsensical violence or violence used to oppress a group of people, it should be referred to as a riot. If people subjected to subhuman standards of living decide to force an enactment of equality, this should be considered a resistance. Can you condemn people for demanding to be treated justly?? How is this something to be viewed in a negative light??

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