Why are demonstrators from the Black Lives Matter movement interrupting the campaign rallies of Bernie Sanders? After all, Sanders is the presidential candidate who is farthest to the left, making him the most likely to be sensitive to the concerns of an organization known for its radical activism. Wouldn’t it make more sense to disrupt and co-opt the public appearances of candidates perceived to be the least sympathetic, such as Rand Paul?
Jamelle Bouie of Slate tries to explain it this way:
In this environment, if you’re trying to make a splash, you go with Sanders, especially when he’s more open to change and adjustment than the alternatives. Disrupting Sanders gives you more bang for your buck: It keeps you in the news and puts indirect pressure on other campaigns that know they’ll have to answer to the movement’s questions.
Bouie may be right, but I suspect there’s something more fundamental going on here.
The left is full of sincere, concerned people who, like many on the right, hope to use political power to advance their particular agendas.
Political power requires physical violence or the threat of physical violence to achieve particular ends.
Black Lives Matter is self-described as “an ideological and political intervention in a world where Black lives are systematically and intentionally targeted for demise.” The organization tries to draw attention and public resources to the problems of police brutality and social injustice toward African Americans.
Environmentalists on the left want to use political power to protect our natural resources and battle global warming. (I’ve always found it cur…