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Capitalism Is Theft: A Wear Your Voice Reading List

It doesn’t matter what kind of “rules” you try to apply to this system, they won’t help. Capitalism’s number one rule, first and foremost, is and always has been exploitation.

Capitalism is theft. It is violence. It relies and thrives on the suffering of the most marginalized—stealing our labor, our time, our energy, our health, our sanity, and even our lives. It actively prevents our mobility.

It doesn’t matter what kind of “rules” you try to apply to this system, they won’t help. Capitalism’s number one rule, first and foremost, is and always has been exploitation. It is predicated on the enslavement, subjugation, and colonization of African and other Indigenous lands and peoples. 

It often looks like wage theft and is classified as “necessary” violence—driven mostly by greed and wrapped up in anti-Blackness, white supremacy, and patriarchy.

It creates a culture of sameness, wherein there is never room for individuality. This places cogs in the machine, which leads to working people’s exhaustion; tired of the vacuous shared routines, which then leads to the commodification of care—most notably referred to as “self-care”—and other moments of escape. This keeps citizens too tired, too busy, or too apathetic to protest, and that is what creates what many refer to as the Organizer/Nonprofit Industrial Complex: the commodification of community organizing and other social justice engagement that eventually leads to the production of the Celebrity Activist.

Capitalism touches everything around us because it’s so pervasive and invasive. Wear Your Voice has written at length about the various ways in which capitalism harms all marginalized people and how it benefits the mega-wealthy who continue to squeeze every bit of blood out of our bodies and this planet, into their cups. We intended to write one cohesive piece about how capitalism is at its core a form of theft, but it is too vast, too insidious and too much to tackle with one piece. So we decided to assemble a list of the pieces featured on our site that illustrate just how endemic and destructive capitalism is: 

Politics 

Words Mean Things: Understanding Colonialism

The Depraved Violence of Britain’s ‘Subtle’ Racism

How White America’s Legacy of Voter Suppression Harms People of Color

The Case Against Elizabeth Warren

“Our Sin Was Being Indigenous, Leftist, And Anti-imperialist” — A Primer On Bolivia’s Us-backed Coup

From Lebanon To Chile, Protesters Are Uniting Against The Ruling Class

I’m Not Here For Your Presidential Candidates

Everyone Should Know What Happened To Black Wall Street

Communism, Socialism, And Anarchism 101

The Caste System Is The Biggest Hindrance To The Feminist Movement In India

Prison, Carceral System, Slave Labor

These Are The Companies Profiting From Detaining Migrants At Border Concentration Camps

Abolish It All: A World Without Private Prisons is Still A World With Slaves

Profit Over People: Us Slave-like Labor And Human Trafficking Still Exist

This Labor Day, Don’t Forget About Incarcerated People.

When Incarcerated People Strike, The World Should Listen And Respond

Gentrification 

Gentrification Is Not A Myth, It Is Very Real Violence 

Gentrification: Rich Black People Pushing Out Poor Black Folks Won’t Solve Anything

Organizing and Social Justice Work 

Organizing for Liberation Ain’t Free When Capitalism Rules Everything Around Me

Fat People Must Become a Priority to the Left

Anarcha-feminists Of The Past And Present Are An Inspiration For Today

Environment

Yes, Environmental Racism is Real and It Is Devastating.

The Price Increase for National Parks is Another Form of Environmental Racism

19 Youth Climate Activists Of Color Who Are Fighting To Protect The Earth

The Lasting, Racist Legacy Of Colonialism On The Environment

Economics, Corporations, and Billionaires

Corporations Will Not Save Us

Away’s Treatment of Workers Is Symptomatic of Capitalism’s Violence

Billionaires, Bill Gates and The Scam That Is Philanthropy

It’s More Than A Check: Understanding Reparations

How I Benefited from Tax Evasion and Wealth Hoarding

The Racist History of Tipping

Entertainment 

How I Learned To Resist Geek Consumerism

PARASITE, The Horror of Poverty and The Importance of Class Solidarity

How Thanos Fits Into Real-World Myths of Overpopulation and Scarcity

Transportation 

Lyft or Uber, It’s All A Quick Ride to a Capitalist Hell

Reproductive Control

Reproductive Control is About Far More Than “Women’s Bodies”

Dating and Relationships

Black Love is Hard AF When the World of Capitalism is Trying to Kill You

Desirability: Do You Really Love Fat People When You Can’t Even See Us Beyond The Political?

Health 

Why Living with Chronic Illness in a Capitalist Society is Dehumanizing

Diet

Decolonizing Veganism to Make it More Accessible and Less Racist

Workplace Discrimination

Why Pay Secrecy Is Inherently Anti-Feminist

The Marijuana Industry Alienates Black People and Benefits White Folks

Death

When Marginalized Folk Take Our Lives, It’s Because the State Already Has

For Black Folk with Prostates

Culture

What The Shut Down of Gothamist And DNAinfo Means For Journalism And Workers’ Rights

21st Century Colonization: Becky Came For Our Bindis and Our Chai

Time

I Do Not Have The Same 24 Hours As Beyoncé

Imagination

When They See Us Yesterday: The Black Imagination Beyond State Violence

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