Charlottesville CASE STUDY
This case study that we are developing through Within our Lifetime's experience working with local movement groups in Charlottesville, VA leading up to the Unite the Right rally August 11th and 12th of 2017 will be coming soon! We partnered with Movement NetLab in using the movement cycle framework as a tool to tell the story of how power and accountability evolves throughout the cycle. It is important to note that Charlottesville is still in the contraction phase of the cycle. For example, at the end of February 2018 the local judge in Charlottesville ruled that the city must remove the black shrouds covering the statues.
Therefore, the information was gathered from multiple groups in Charlottesville's local ecosystem of organizing and emerging movement building efforts is sensitive as they are organizing not only against white nationalist opposition, but also pushing against the complicity of multiple institutions locally in reinforcing structural racism. For this reason, we also provided a video and written accounts from local organizers as well, to get a full nuanced perspective from all of our collective learning as a national network supporting this local effort.
We uplift the stories of local organizers as it provides lessons learned for people in local communities nationwide to be prepared when dealing with acute situations of racialized violence rooted in structural racism, white supremacy culture, and white nationalism. Additionally, it provides an opportunity for national organizers, as well as funders and donors to explore how to be in collaborative solidarity with local communities with racial disasters occur.
From local community members in Charlottesville: Six months. This video only scratches the surface of what we've been through. Before, we remember how our public officials gaslit an entire community. How we screamed and screamed, demanding support, demanding action, & were ignored. A community reduced to Cassandra's curse. It's hard not to feel like a town reduced to a hashtag. A town of victims, a town defined by its worst day. (In fact, it was a weekend. No wait, it was a summer. Really, it's been decades of white supremacy.) Some victories: On the anniversary of Nat Turner's Rebellion, activists rose up & took over a City Council hellbent on dismissing & silencing the community. C'ville elected Nikuyah Walker for City Council, then Mayor. We shut down the permitting of another Unite the Right. We still have so much healing to do. We still have so much work to do. Solidarity Cville @SolidCville on Twitter. DONATE TO THE CHARLOTTESVILLE RESILIENCE FUND: bit.ly/cvillefund