P. O.O.R. .
.Scholaz til we die
The Revolution begins with I
The sounds of survival, thrival and subsistence brushed past
the 21 determined faces of poverty, race, disability, inmigrante and
youth scholars from POOR Magazine (and repping the SF Bayview
Newspaper) about to embark on a revolutionary journey to the US Social
Forum in Atlanta. Residue of past and present domestic violence, low
wage jobs, gentrification and homelessness clung to our bodies as we
piled into our rented van, greyhound buses and friends cars .. This was
the first trip our organization had ever taken anywhere, and the first
trip many of us personally had ever taken, which was not a result of a
poverty crime, a crisis, an incarceration or deportation.
We were in pursuit of a dream. A realization of a vision of
cooperative, non-competitive media justice and media production at the
Ida B Wells Media Justice Center at the US Social Forum. A dream we had
launched, worked on and struggled to attain for the last year.
The first conversation
" Have you heard about the US Social Forum? " almost a year ago when Gretchen Hildebran, filmmaker and alumni of POOR Magazine ´ s Race, Poverty and Media Justice Institute
asked me about POOR possibly doing some media for the forum, I
immediately reflected on other social forums that POOR Magazine never
had the financial resources to attend much less make media on.
I had heard about how media centers were structured at these
forums, how they are often completely inaccessible spaces for disabled
media producers, poor folks who are stuck in the crevasses of the
digital divide and folks who haven´t mastered the dominant (oppressors)
language due to global, local poverty, institutional racism and
classism, colonization and border fascism. In other words
notwithstanding the radical goals and objectives of the Forums held all
over the world, the media production is led by the same folks who
always make media, who always have the channels of access and privelege
" Well, why don ´ t we propose a new vision for media
production, you know, based on the model of POOR Magazine ´ s
indigenous media production. "
Gretchen being one of Mama Dee ´ s best students and a truly
creative and radical thinker responded quickly, " that would be great.