The World Would Have Us Make a Quiet Thing of our Grief
You are reading this on the 30th day of the genocidal assault by Israeli Occupation Forces on the people of Gaza.
I am writing to you after spending an entire month swallowing the echoes of screams for mercy, of feeling the anguish of a people my “government” will tell me not to mourn.
I have watched war-mongering politicians send my money to drop bombs on innocent people.
They will say this is a “war.” It is not. They will ask us to call Palestinian resistance, terrorism. We will not. They will say our disapproval of the state of “Israel” means we hate our Jewish kin. We will know they are lying. We will not buy into their hate.
They will ask us to look away. To continue life as usual. We will refuse.
We will bear witness and let our hearts break over and over again. We will maintain our humanity.
Over the past three weeks, I have been keeping time differently. Each hour is marked by another massacre. Each day I attempt to memorize the name of another martyred journalist. Attempt to fathom 825 families erased from registries. Seeing another parent holding another dead child, another Palestinian looking for a sibling, a friend, a lover amongst the rubble. We are watching hope be extinguished for thousands as they mourn their dead.
We have watched 10,000 people die on our cell phone screens.
It is imperative, as a company working on the unceded lands of Lenapehoking peoples, as a company run by queer and trans* people of the global majority, as children of the Caribbean, as children of Lebanon, of Ireland, as people with ancestral histories of resistance…that we publicly condemn the illegal settler colonial project known as “Israel” and the ongoing genocide unfolding in Palestine.
Throughout history, artists have carried the torch of liberation across movements, and we cannot align ourselves with that legacy without taking a stand.
Ninth Planet stands whole-heartedly with the armed resistance of the Palestinian people.
Ninth Planet stands with the armed resistance of oppressed people everywhere.
We are still learning, but our belief is clear: from Palestine to Haiti to Sudan, Tigray to Syria to the Democratic Republic of the Congo, from Armenia to Afghanistan to Turtle Island to Puerto Rico, all oppressed people will be free.
The global settler colonial project (which includes the United States of America), with its roots in white supremacy, will end. Empire will crumble. Land will be returned to its rightful stewards. Prisons will be emptied.
Queer and trans people will be supported in their right to bodily autonomy and self-determination.
The hungry will have food, the houseless will have shelter. People of the diaspora will be safe from harm.
Our disabled kin will be respected and protected. Borders will vanish. Walls will be knocked down.
Children will be safe to dream and play. Families will be reunited.
Our planet will flourish. We will finally be free.
Ninth Planet not only supports the call for an immediate ceasefire and end to US-support of “Israel,” but also the complete end to the “Israeli” occupation and the return of the land to the Palestinians.
This fight will not end once Palestine is free, we must then turn our attention to the other atrocities taking place globally. We will look at the neglect and terror being inflicted on our people at home.
We will knit our struggles together.
We are showing up to this imperfect, with much to learn, and perhaps, a bit late...but we are showing up.
- Nia Benjamin, November 5th, 2023