Wednesday, April 28, 2010

The Arizona boycott takes a literary turn

As the movement to beat back the racist fascist Arizona law SB1070 picks up steam and the second boycott of that state (first time around it was because Arizona refused to honor Dr. Martin Luther King Day as an official holiday) builds, we're starting to see some action from literary corners.

Today the great novelist Tayari Jones published a letter she sent to the Pima Summer Writers Conference in Tucson, at which she'd been scheduled to appear this year. In the letter she canceled the engagement to protest the Arizona law and support the boycott. Read it on her blog. It's beautiful.

Meanwhile, in a development that reminds me of the creation and explosive growth of the website Poets Against the War in the days just before the U.S. invaded Iraq in 2003, hundreds of people, soon to be thousands, I'd bet, have signed on to a new Facebook group called Poets Responding to SB 1070. New poems are being added pretty steadily. There is some powerful work up there. If you're on Facebook, you ought to join this group. If you're a poet, how about writing something for them?