Then, quite suddenly in 1959 and early 1960, the Congolese independence movement was ignited. In January 1959, riots erupted in Leopoldville during a rally of the Association Culturelle des Ressortissants du Bas-Congo (ABAKO), a political party headed by Joseph Kasavubu. At first the crowd was small and orderly, but soon there were shouts for immediate independence. The police began to panic and their commissaire was knocked over while trying to arrest the party leaders. Police started to shoot in an effort to clear the crowd, and pandemonium resulted. The crowds rampaged, looting stores in both African and European neighbourhoods. Reinforcements from the Force Publique tried to cordon off the affected areas, but by nightfall disorder had spread throughout the segregated quarter of the city. The Canadian trade commissioner in Leopoldville later reported that “all white people walking or driving through the native City and the outskirts of Leopoldville were attacked with stones, iron bars, and anything handy, their cars smashed and burnt, some women disrobed.” Police arrested more than two hundred people, including Kasavubu, and some fifty Africans were killed. High unemployment was said to be one of the causes of the riot, but dissatisfaction with the level of political independence from Belgium was also a crucial factor.
—  Canada, the Congo Crisis, and UN Peacekeeping, 1960-64 by Kevin . Spooner

Playing intro with the mouse colonies. Two become one in a nice scentless environment. Looks like everything is going well. #mice #asf #deermouse #colonialism

Orientalist Fantasy: Coldplay’s Hymn for the Weekend

by HH x C360

If Coldplay’s “Hymn for the Weekend” is the theme music for your upcoming weekend, let us stop you right there. Let’s rewind and think about this. What about the video excites you? Is it the music? The lyrics get you pumped. Or maybe it’s the idea of Coldplay and Beyoncé collaborating and they’re your favorite artists. More likely it’s the visuals and novelty of the scenery that makes this video so cool.

Well, great. Let’s dive in. Here are the problems.


This video takes the complexity and vastness of Indian culture and squeezes it into the long-romanticized Western narrative of said culture. India, yoga, and Hinduism entered the Western consciousness in the 60s when LSD-emboldened hippies discovered tie-dye and “vibrations”. Since then, a lot of the imagery around India has been dominated by this colorblind New Age sensibility. It’s evident that director Ben Mor channeled the familiar semi-spiritual caricature of Hindu practices.

“When you take a closer look at India, surrealism and psychedelia immediately come to mind, at least to mine! I tried to use the special effects in a way that just heightened what was already there. Almost trying to make the surreal real.” — Ben Mor, Director of “Hymn For the Weekend”, for Black Dog Films

India does have sadhus, people dressed up Shivji’s, autorickshas, bustling streets, intricate jewelry and textiles, sacred geometry, a myriad of dance styles and colors galore. But to reduce one of the world’s oldest civilizations - with over 29 states, 70+ languages, 8 religions, 200 years of British colonialism, and a culture of deep patriarchy - to four minutes of fetishized Indian fantasy… You gotta do better. We deserve better.


Coldplay, y'all are British. India was under British occupation less than 70 years ago. So that makes the idea of you talking about “feeling drunk and high” over the felicitations of our children a million times worse. Respect our space in re-establishing our identity and the nation’s healing process.


Cultural appropriation is when a dominant group cherrypicks what they like about a minority group, while simultaneously attacking and undermining that minority group on a systematic level. It’s when you are able to take the costume off at the end of the day when members of that group cannot. Our community and our sisters have been bullied, attacked and discriminated against for wearing our skin color and traditions for decades.  Case in point: Donning full Bollywood glitz and garb, while throwing a bone to the slum kids. It’s easy to play Bollywood Queen for a day; however, it’s disrespectful and insensitive to romanticize the plight of the poor because their circumstances cannot be escaped. Despite what the fantasy world in the video suggests, Bey and Coldplay are literally worlds apart from the other folks featured in this video. It’s important to note that Beyoncé is an African American woman that does not benefit from institutional racism in America. But in this case, she operates not as Bey-Who-Follows-Deray-On-Twitter, or Bey-The-Feminist, or even Bey-Who-Dropped-A-20-Track-Visual-Album-Out-of-the-Blue. In this case, she is Beyoncé - the American Superstar Seeking International Crossover Appeal. As much as we love Beyoncé, she is not exempt from her part in the reduction of a people. This video is too real and we have to talk about it. She seems to be portraying a Bollywood actress, despite the presence of an actual Bollywood actress, Sonam Kapoor, who throws some flowers in an irrelevant 2 second cameo. It’s almost as if Sonam was used to justify the blatant cultural appropriation and offset any controversy. Sorry Coldplay, try again. Oh wait, this is already your second offense….. (refer to their first attempt - Princess of China ft Rihanna)


Holi is a Hindu celebration. It happens once a year in the springtime and is surrounded by various stories and symbolisms within Hindu cosmology. It’s not a Color Run, and it’s certainly not a backdrop for Chris Martin’s crossfade. 

“The original kernel was that I was listening to Flo Rida or something, and I thought, it’s such a shame that Coldplay could never have one of those late-night club songs, like “Turn Down for What.” What would we call it if we had one? I thought I’d like to have a song called “Drinks on Me” where you sit on the side of a club and buy everyone drinks because you’re so f—ing cool. I was chuckling about that, when this melody came—“drinks on me, drinks on me”—then the rest of the song came out. I presented it to the rest of the band and they said, “We love this song, but there’s no way you can sing ‘drinks on me.’” So that changed into “drink from me” and the idea of having an angelic person in your life. Then that turned into asking Beyoncé to sing on it.” — Chris Martin for WSJ

From the children playing Holi to levitating sadhus, the video makes itself at home among the most widely-circulated images and stereotypes of Hinduism. This speaks to an interesting element of Coldplay’s Orientalism, where they find a way to experience the ecstasy and transcendence provided by Hindu and Buddhist worlds respectively, yet still maintaining their elevated position as the secular protagonists. They reap the cool aesthetic and perhaps spiritual benefits of a group’s experience without really getting their hands dirty. To paraphrase legend Nayyirah Weekend, they are able to “take the art. slice it from their skin. leave the color behind”. So if the thing that makes the video compelling is the authenticity of the people on film and the vibrance and bustle of spaces, what role do Coldplay and Beyonce even play? They’re ultimately upstaged by the culture on display, which makes us feel a little vindicated.

Mired in patriarchy and post-colonial trauma as it may be, India is one of the fastest growing markets and youth consumer bases out right now - it’s hot. And Coldplay and Beyoncé want in. But… we’re good.

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Australia Day: The Main Event in the National Sport of Denial

Note: The following text was written by some unknown activists who redecorated several ‘ADSHELL’ corporate advertising spaces in the city of Melbourne, in so-called Australia on 26.01.16 in protest against the ‘Australia Day’ national public holiday and it’s accompanying ‘official’ celebrations.

Australia Day: The Main Event in the National Sport of Denial

Today, advertising across the city of Melbourne has been replaced with messages that confront “Australia Day” for its inherent celebration of invasion and the genocide that continues to be perpetrated against First Nations Peoples of this land.

This act of protest seeks to highlight that so-called “Australia” was invaded under false pretenses, and that the sovereignty of its First Nations was never ceded, whilst simultaneously reclaiming public spaces from commercial entities for use as a public forum.

For many Indigenous people, today is a day of anger and mourning. In the wars that followed the initial invasion 228 years ago, hundreds of thousands of Aboriginal people lost their lives in defense of their homeland. Countless more have died since as a result of the national narrative of denial and neglect that has since been perpetuated by governments, businesses and schools. To uphold this narrative through the celebration of Australia Day, is to continue the genocidal mindset of the first invaders and to uphold their actions.

The private entities that pay to control our public spaces know this history. They have helped perpetuate this patriotic myth because they profit from denial. These companies are the same companies that are responsible for the displacement of Aboriginal people from their lands, the pollution of environments and the destruction of cultures. They would have Aboriginal people assimilate or be wiped out and they would have you, the individual, conform or disappear.

We stand against all private entities that would seek to colonise our minds for profit and we stand in solidarity with all Aboriginal peoples fighting to decolonise this continent.

History is shared. Reflect and acknowledge.


Capitalism was born in disrepute, born of the rapes, massacres, occupations, genocides, colonialism and every despicable act humans are capable of inflicting. Capitalism was not responsible for some great, otherwise unimaginable leap in production, which—despite its contradictions—resulted in human progress and enlightenment. What capitalism did was to rip the vast majority of humanity out of the productive process—in Africa, Asia, the Middle East, Australia and what has come to be known as the Americas. The hundreds of millions dead due to the slave trade and slavery itself; the millions exterminated everywhere Europeans ventured—these are people whose hands were forever removed from a relationship with nature that would result in ‘production.’

Europeans achieved their national identity by way of this bloody process. This is not something that only happened a long time ago. The world’s peoples are suffering the consequences of capitalism’s emergence right now. Locked in colonies and the indirect rule of neocolonialism, restricted to lives characterized by brutality, ignorance and violence in the barrios of the Americas, in other internal colonies characterized as Indian reservations and black ghettos, kept under the paranoiac, nuclear-backed, armed-to-the-teeth watch of military forces born of a state power that has its origins in protecting the relationship between capitalism and its imperial pedestal, capitalism has been the absolute factor in restricting production and development. It has concentrated productive capacity in the hands of the world’s minority European population that sits atop the pedestal of our oppressive reality. Capitalism was not the good, “progressive” force that is the precursor to something better for “humanity.” Capitalism was a disaster that rescued Europe from a diseased feudal existence at the expense of the world.

—  Omali Yeshitela

As if the Seven Sisters Festival wasn’t enough (more information about that here:, yet another racist and colonialist bush doof has popped up. White people have no right to appropriate from our cultures. They have no claim to this sacred land. Whilst they’re out their holding their racist festival, I’m still here without my culture and the knowledge that my family last went on walkabout in the early 1900s because of genocide and the racist government policies that were created to ultimately end my people. My culture is not for sale. This whole thing is realllllly ridiculous and disrespectful. Go post on the event page and let them know how inappropriate this all is. 

Note: the event organizers did change the name of the festival to omit the term “walkabout”, but within 5 minutes of doing so have changed the name back to what it originally was. There has been no official apology yet and I was message this by one of the organizers a few minutes ago. 

Why would I, or any other Aboriginal people for that matter, want to come to their racist festival anyway?! Especially on Invasion/Survival Day???

Their intention was never to welcome others and be inclusive. They really don’t care about Blackfellas. They just care about stealing our culture and kicking up a fuss when they’re called out on it. 

Here’s the link to the event page:

If you have friends/family going, please encourage them to not go. Please boycott this event and make it known that their racism and anti-Blackness is not OK and will not be tolerated.

I have also taken out names, except for the organizers (I have no issue with calling them out publicly), to keep people’s identities safe.
Aboriginal-Canadians are 6.4 times more likely to be killed than other Canadians
If you're a First Nations, Inuit or Metis individual living in Canada you are 6.4 times more likely to be killed than anyone else in the country.
By Anna Mehler Paperny

If you’re a First Nations, Inuit or Metis individual living in Canada you are 6.4 times more likely to be killed than anyone else in the country.

The odds get worse if you’re an Aboriginal man. But Aboriginal women are still 5.6 times more likely to be killed than non-Aboriginal women, according to data released Wednesday by Statistics Canada.

I really hate listening to people talk about vietnamese food, or people who act like they know anything about it, but I just don’t have the courage to confront them…


Many Koreans say same exact thing about Vietnamese food. Or Vietnamese restaurants (owned by Korean corporates) advertise themselves as the result of Franco-Chinese cultural mix. Which sounded like a horrible double standard for me because, for instance, any random Korean would get upset if someone told them Korean language is rich because many English books were translated after Japanese translation back in the time of colonization. 

Most articles and statistics don’t even bother to count Native peoples when discussing poverty.  I’ve seen way too many things that said “all races” and then went on only to discuss white, Black, Latino, and Asian (it’s very rare to see statistics in the US break up the Latino population, which includes white people, Black people, Asian people, Indigenous peoples, mestizos, etc.).

So I’m again posting a few brief links on Native American/American Indian poverty in the US (with the note that Canada sure as shit doesn’t typically do any better with treatment of Indigenous peoples):

Native Americans have a higher poverty and unemployment rate when compared with the national average, but the rates are comparable to those of blacks and Hispanics. About one-in-four American Indians and Alaska Natives were living in poverty in 2012. Among those who identify as American Indian or Alaska Native as their only race, the poverty rate was 29.1% in 2012.

Finally the U.S. is beginning to see steady improvement in employment and economic activity years after the worst crisis since the Great Depression. But one group is still plagued with endemic unemployment and widespread poverty.

Native Americans continue to grapple with unemployment levels nearly double that of the overall population, have higher poverty rates and lag behind in education attainment. Making up about 1 percent of the labor force, the native population of 5.2 million is relatively small but diverse. About 49 percent identify as American Indian and Alaska Native only, and 51 percent are combined with one or more other races, according census data. In all, they comprised 2 percent of the population in 2013.

Although many groups have progressed economically in recent years, the native population, oft-overlooked, has a long way to go.

Income and Poverty


The median household income of single-race American Indian and Alaska Native households in 2013. This compares with $52,176 for the nation as a whole.
Source: 2013 American Community Survey


The percent of single-race American Indians and Alaska Natives that were in poverty in 2013, the highest rate of any race group. For the nation as a whole, the poverty rate was 15.9 percent.
Source: 2011-2013 American Community Survey

Health Insurance


The percentage of single-race American Indians and Alaska Natives who lacked health insurance coverage in 2013. For the nation as a whole, the corresponding percentage was 14.5 percent.
Source: 2013 Current Population Survey <>

New Zealand’s indigenous incarceration rate is 3 times worse than that of the United States.

Native Americans make up 1.7% of the US population [1], and 2% of its prison population [2].

By contrast, Maori, the native peoples of New Zealand, make up 14.9% of the New Zealand’s population [3] yet 51% of its prison population [4].

“100% Pure New Zealand” [5]? More like 100% Pure Bullshit.