Jackson, Mississippi, continues to be gripped by an ongoing water crisis. The task of distributing water among local residents has largely been taken over by civil society organizations such as Coöperatie Jackson and Operation Good. Organizer, Writer and Educator Kali Akunoz joins The Marc Steiner show to explain how the current crisis is a reflection of the failures of capitalism and decades of institutional racism. Although Jackson is more than 80% black today, this is a recent demographic development brought about by white flight and capital flight from the city. The state’s long-standing neglect of Jackson’s infrastructure is a result of deep-seated far-right politics in Mississippi’s public institutions. And what’s happening in Jackson right now is a sign of things going to happen across the country. To fight back, Akuno emphasizes the need to build mass movements and grassroots networks capable of wielding real political power.
Kali Akuno is co-founder and co-director of Collaboration Jackson, and an organizer with the Malcolm X Grassroots Movement (MXGM). He was previously the coordinator of special projects and external funding for the late Mayor Chokwe Lumumba in Jackson, Mississippi. Akuno is the author of “Let your motto be resistance”, and co-author of “Operation Ghetto Storm” and “Every 36 Hours: Report on the Extrajudicial Execution of 120 Black People.”
Post-production: Stephen Frank
The transcript of this podcast will be made available as soon as possible.