Minneapolis’ Denny have a new song out today – but in light of the police murdering George Floyd in their city and the continuous acts of violence against people of color in this nation by the police, the band have refused self-promotion.
by Denny’s Alex Rollins
Denny is releasing a new song today.
Normally we would tie in a press release and personal notes about the song’s concept and meaning, but in light of the police murdering George Floyd in our city and the continuous acts of violence against people of color in this nation by the police, we refuse self-promotion.
I live a handful of blocks from Minneapolis’ Third Precinct, and I have watched my city burn in front of me.
This is not a crisis of looting or rioting or any of the bullshit narratives that our cowardly, crony government is spreading. This is a crisis of systemic dehumanization. This is a crisis of a nation built on racism and exploitation of people of color.
Denny is made up of white, upper-middle class men. The color of our skin and our socioeconomic statuses have meant we’ve lived life with few barriers. We have never feared law enforcement and grew up often ignorant of our own biases and privilege. I originally had words prepared about the inspiration behind this song being about my parents getting divorced when I was 19, and the heartbreak that came with it. Then I watched my neighborhood go up in flames and nothing else really matters right now. I wrote a song about an incredibly formative and emotionally jarring period of my life, but that’s about as bad as I’ve had it. We live in a rigged, racist society and I am its beneficiary.
We need rapid, societal change in this nation and deep change in our hearts. We need to challenge the capitalist power structures that have silenced the voices of and murdered our black and brown neighbors. We need widespread education and acknowledgement of the grave abuses our system is guilty of. We need the voices of the oppressed and disenfranchised to be amplified and we need the speaker cranked to 11 so everyone hears. We need leadership that leads for all people, not just people with white skin and corporate interests. And people like me stop sitting in the wings of discourse, protest and action.
Social media shares mean nothing without action. Internet solidarity only goes so far if you don’t recognize the prejudice in your own heart, listen before speaking, stand up or stand aside for those who have had their voices stripped.
This country has favored and benefited white people and worked against people of color. Change is necessary and possible but we cannot revert back to passive participation and sideline solidarity. Silence (or temporary, trend-inspired pseudo-action) is no longer an option. Continuous protest, community engagement and support are needed to dismantle and redesign the system as it is while shirking the influence of subtle and coercive propaganda designed to cull anti-establishment sentiment. We need to stay vigilant as powers at play work to mire the clarity of the truth. Facts, context, words and actions matter now more than ever.
There’s a new Denny song out today, but you’re going to have to go to Spotify on your own if you want to listen.
Educate yourself or to donate to important organizations advancing the cause, feeding the displaced and hungry or rebuilding our communities. Links below. If you read this and have organizations that you don’t know about that we can use our modest platform to promote, please connect with us on social media (@dennytheband).
- Resources to support the Minneapolis protests and community:
- Reclaim the Block
- Helping feed children & families in our community, as destruction has created food deserts
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? © Alex Rollins
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