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Tanesha Grant

I Am a Revolutionary: Occupy City Hall

Delivered July 1, 2020, NYC

August 12, 2020

It is our job, like the young lady said, to carry on where our ancestors left off. So, we in these streets. We in their face. All right? And we’re not begging for anything. We’re demanding that generational wealth that belongs to us anyway. And we need to let them know. If your generational wealth tracks back to a plantation, that’s my money. And we want it. I am a revolutionary.

I am a revolutionary. Fred Hampton, twenty-one years old. He was not only bringing black people together, he was bringing everybody together. Rainbow Coalition. They murdered that man, the police and the government while he slept in his bed with his pregnant wife. His mother and father go to a statue of him and cry. No parent should outlive their child. No parent should have to listen to a cop coming to her house and telling them that another cop has murdered their baby. No parent.

I’m tired. I don’t want no more Breonna Taylors. And speaking of Breonna Taylor, we want them cops arrested immediately. Why are those cops not arrested? Went to that woman’s house and killed her, and a social worker, while she slept and didn’t—sent her man to jail for having a licensed firearm and trying to protect his home and his girl. They shot that beautiful woman eight times. She died a violent death because of no-knock
warrants. So, we’re not free. And we never been free. So, our liberation is everything. That is what we are fighting for. We are fighting for liberation. Because none of this that I speak to you now did I learn in school. I got a whole GED. I was a straight school-to-prison pipeline because my mother gave me up as soon as I was born and I was brought up in the foster care system.

 

It’s time to get our village back. And white people come along but don’t come along with no bullshit. We don’t need no white saviors.

And I was everything they made me. I was angry. I was violent. If you looked at me the wrong way, I would whoop your ass. That’s what we got to understand. They throw us into these systems to make us into something that we’re not. And we not letting them. Are we letting them do that to us anymore? Just like in slavery, they didn’t want us to read. They didn’t want us to learn. So, what happened? We learned anyway. We had our own ways. We had our own culture.

It’s time to get our village back. And white people come along but don’t come along with no bullshit. We don’t need no white saviors.

I’m so tired of these organizations with white people heading them. We don’t need you to head our organizations. You can’t tell us nothing about being Black. But we can tell you something about being white and that’s white privilege. Something we never had. So, again, step back and we going to step up. My name is Tanesha Grant. I am the CEO of Parents Support and Parents New York.

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