Public intellectual Vijay Prashad challenges the notion that people of color fighting to make their voices heard at OWS is about division and hopelessness. In these trying times for people of color around the continent trying to make sense of all of this, his optimism is emotionally lifting:
Early into the OWS, a few people challenged one of thesentences in a draft, namely that the people in protest were of “one race, the human race, formerly divided by race, class.” So, Hena Ashraf, Sonny Singh, Manissa McCleave Maharawal and others contested the assertion that the divides in our humanity are now superseded. It is such contentiousness that builds our movement; it does not divide it. Capitalism, built on the inequality of property and of social formations that it inherited, is one of the primary engines of social division. The force of goodwill cannot annul or supersede its divisions by fiat. They have to be struggled against, even inside our new movements. That there is now a “People of Color Working Group” in the OWS (http://pococcupywallstreet.tumblr.com/) and a website dedicated to a much deeper commitment to anti-racism in OWS (https://disoccupy.wordpress.com/) is a sign of hope, not despair.