The inevitability of violence at a [Black Lives Matter] demonstration – especially a demonstration that emerged to insist upon the importance of bodies who’ve been violently un-cared for – ensures that a certain amount of people won’t, because they can’t, show up. Couple this with physical and mental illnesses and disabilities that keep people in bed and at home, and we must contend with the fact that many whom these protests are for, are not able to participate in them – which means they are not able to be visible as political activists.
There was a Tumblr post that came across my dash during these weeks of protest, that said something to the effect of: “shout out to all the disabled people, sick people, people with PTSD, anxiety, etc., who can’t protest in the streets with us tonight. Your voices are heard and valued, and with us.” Heart. Reblog.
So, as I lay there, unable to march, hold up a sign, shout a slogan that would be heard, or be visible in any traditional capacity as a political being, the central question of Sick Woman Theory formed: How do you throw a brick through the window of a bank if you can’t get out of bed?
I used to think that the most anti-capitalist gestures left had to do with love, particularly love poetry: to write a love poem and give it to the one you desired, seemed to me a radical resistance. But now I see I was wrong.
The most anti-capitalist protest is to care for another and to care for yourself. To take on the historically feminized and therefore invisible practice of nursing, nurturing, caring. To take seriously each other’s vulnerability and fragility and precarity, and to support it, honor it, empower it. To protect each other, to enact and practice community. A radical kinship, an interdependent sociality, a politics of care.
Lue loput: Sick Woman Theory.