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Christian Alonso

The "American Dream" is dead.

- The American dream? This one has died in the most undignified way.

The "American Dream" is dead.

Burn Minneapolis. The flames are fanned in unison by thousands of protesters who chant the slogan "I can't breathe", which recalls the desperate plea of George Floyd, an Afro-American citizen murdered by a police officer.

Floyd's death was captured in a video that quickly went viral on social networks, and represented the breaking point of a tired society. He exposed the systematic violence that is still present in the "country of the" freedom ". And, as an inconvenient truth, he has shown that racism is embedded in each of the sociopolitical structures of the United States.

His agony has been shared by various African-American citizens who have lost their lives at the hands of the police. Some of these crimes, not to mention most, have gone unpunished. The main justification given by the system, and shared by many, is that of "excess force for resisting arrest." However, this term does not represent the reality and the symbolic weight immersed in the true act, the murder.

Incredible as it may seem, there are those who continue to justify the actions of the police and give greater weight to the disturbances caused by the protests of recent days. The clear example of all this can be found in the President of the United States, who through social networks has expressed his disapproval of the uprisings and has made an apology for violence by mentioning the possible use of the armed forces to dispel protesters.

The truth is that Donald Trump's statements are not unipersonal. They represent the thinking of a large percentage of the population who, from their structural position, have not been able to discern an overwhelming reality that has been lived for more than a century: racial violence.

Today violence is internalized in a large part of society. The perception of reality often does not allow its presence to be glimpsed. There is a daily life where murder, robbery and any violent act are so recurrent that we see it as part of our lives.

Violence can be categorized into three categories: subjective, systemic or objective, and divine1. In this context we will focus only on two. Subjective violence is characterized by being perpetuated by an agent of action that can be easily identified (police, military, drug traffickers, etc.), these through their structural position exercise direct control over others.

On the other hand we have objective violence which, in my opinion, is the most dangerous of all. It is characterized by not having a clear perpetrator and it is very common for it to go unnoticed. This type of violence is immersed in social structures, in institutions and in the minds of individuals, being reflected in their behavior and language.

Despite the existing dichotomy in the conceptualization of violence, these concepts are widely linked and help us to analyze a myriad of structural problems in any society. The clearest example of this is found in racism.

For more than a century, African Americans have suffered the ravages of segregation. The invention of the races has been a key factor for these to have been considered as "inferior humans" compared to the white colonizers. Despite the fact that for years there have been key figures who have fought fervently for equal rights, racism continues to permeate much of American society.

There is a dualism between subjective and objective violence. However, it is difficult to discern. Racism is an intangible entity. It is internalized in the minds of individuals at any level in the leadership. Through language, racism tries to reduce the personal value of various minorities by giving them endless negative connotations that serve to justify the actions of repressive agents.

To understand it, it is enough to observe the recent situation. A couple of weeks ago, countless white American citizens held absurd demonstrations asking that the confinement end so they could resume activities as simple as cutting their hair. The police did not repress or kill anyone, despite the fact that these protests took place in the midst of a pandemic.

Today, when thousands of individuals have taken to the streets to demand justice for the murder of an innocent person, the State has used its repressive apparatus to demonstrate once again that the problem is not to demonstrate, the problem is not to be white and to do so. .

The murder of George Floyd is thought to be the only reason America is burning today. However, the truth is that his death is a symbolic reflection of all the problems that are looming over the country and around the world today.

The American dream has been shattered. The curtain of effective democracy, prosperity and defense of human dignity has fallen. Today, the fire that spreads from coast to coast in the country is evidence of the thousands of deaths due to racism. An uncomfortable truth for the more than 30 million people who live in poverty. The hopelessness of those who cannot access a free health system. The inevitable fact that the system falls apart.

Despite the fact that the truth hits harder every day, there are those who still refuse a transformation. I earnestly hope that the fire and the desperate cries of those who suffer can open their eyes and show them that a different reality is possible.

Until human dignity prevails over capital, that the rebellion continues to be a political act.

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Alonso, Christian. “Ha muerto el "sueño americano"..” CEMERI, 29 jun. 2023,