Solidarity and Roles for Allies
Cooperation Jackson and the Malcolm X Grassroots Movement firmly believe in the solidarity of peoples as defined by Samora Machel (a leader of FRELIMO and the first President of Mozambique):
International solidarity is not an act of charity: It is an act of unity between allies fighting on different terrains toward the same objective. The foremost of these objectives is to aid the development of humanity to the highest level possible.
We believe that we all must play a role in fighting and defeating capitalism, colonialism, imperialism, white supremacy, patriarchy, heterosexism and speciesism. However, we all play different roles given our structural positions, identities (race, class, gender, age, ability, etc.) and locations. The key to liberation we believe is centered in recognizing the strategic power and inherent limitations of our respective positions and employing the agency that we all possess to eliminate the systems of oppression that determine these positions and presently shape and determine our lives. We do this by undermining the positions of power and privilege we may occupy, and uplifting the transformative practices and demands of those in (presently) subordinate positions.
In the context of the Black Power, Black Lives and Pan-Africanism conference, we ask that all our non-Afrikan allies respect that fact that is this is primarily a conversation between Afrikan peoples about developing a program to empower ourselves and our communities. We believe that the liberation of Afrikan people will aid in the liberation of all peoples, but there are some necessary self-organizing tasks that must be done by Afrikan people alone. All people can support this project and process by offering time, energy and resources when appropriate and when conditional only by shared objectives.
More practically this means:
1. Being mindful of your place and position in this conversation and starting from a “step back” position of listening, learning, and thinking of ways to be in solidarity.
2. Thinking about and offering ways in which you can contribute to the programmatic outcomes developed by the conferences Black participants.
3. Thinking of and offering ways in which you can and will organize your own community(s) to support the programmatic outcomes developed by the conferences Black participants.