I spoke to a communist revolutionary today. She was selling newspapers. We spoke about workers, about revolution, about parties and resistance. I said I taught at the university and she asked what I would do if there was a strike for higher wages. She asked would I strike and protest or would I "be a scab and go to work." I thought I could be honest. I felt close to her. I was projecting. I said that I honestly didn't know because I need my health insurance. That I have an incurable disease that costs tens of thousands of dollars a year in treatment. I thought she'd understand. I didn't know what I was looking for until she spoke in response. She told me about the South African miners who protested and the police rounded them up and shot them. "So it wasn't that they lost insurance, they died for the cause," she said. I nodded silently. I don't want to die. I mentioned that I inform my students, that I write, but it all felt stupid. I felt stupid.
I wish I'd asked her what she thought of black lives matter. If she thought that those babies' bodies were worth it because of all this. if perhaps there's rejoicing at black death because they can sell more papers and send more money to Mumia.
And maybe it is worth it, I will not pretend there has not been a value in blood.
But I didn't.
I bought her newspaper for fifty cents and wished her luck.
just some things usually on my mind....