‘We’re Trying to Destroy the World’ – Anti-Blackness and Police Violence After Ferguson

Frank B. Wilderson III

“Police brutality has never identified our problem. Our problem is one of complete captivity from birth to death, and coercion as the starting point of our interaction with the State and with ordinary white citizens.”

[They say to us], ‘You, Black person, must demonstrate to me that I am unethical in my actions.’ Yet, they wouldn’t hold any other paradigm of oppression to that high of a bar. They wouldn’t say that the White French people living in Algeria have to be destroyed because they are unethical in their actions. They would say that they have to be destroyed because they are present, because they are here. They wouldn’t say, ‘Well you know, there’s some good capitalists and some bad capitalists.’ They would say, ‘the capitalist as a category has to be destroyed’. What freaks them out about an analysis of anti-Blackness is that this applies to the category of the Human, which means that they have to be destroyed regardless of their performance, or of their morality, and that they occupy a place of power that is completely unethical, regardless of what they do. And they’re not going to do that. Because what are they trying to do? They’re trying to build a better world. What are we trying to do? We’re trying to destroy the world. Two irreconcilable projects.”