From the internationally recognized civil rights activist/organizer and host of the podcast Pod Save the People, a meditation on resistance, justice, and freedom, and an intimate portrait of a movement from the front lines.
The book is best in its earliest pages, where Mckesson stays closer to what happened in Ferguson and to his difficult childhood in Baltimore ... This is a poetic, passionate and deeply personal book that dutifully disclaims any pretense of leadership, crediting everything to the collective actions of individuals in the streets of Ferguson ... The Other Side of Freedom is a good guide to the ironies and contradictions of this new social movement, and of the individual who has reluctantly come to personify it.
...Mckesson has traveled to demonstrations around the country, from Baton Rouge, Louisiana, to his native Baltimore, and documented them in real time via social media. He is, at the moment, the most visible spokesperson of a certain part of the movement: the protest ... In twelve chapters covering organizing, identity, activism, and more, Mckesson sets out to provide an 'intellectual, pragmatic political framework for a new liberation movement.' But he doesn’t move much beyond poetic rhapsodizing about protest, which he romanticizes to the exclusion of most other aspects of resistance. Indeed, he’s outright dismissive of some ... Mckesson is, it must be said, a master of the tweet...but long-form writing generally requires qualities such as specificity, meaningful examples, evidence, and storytelling, and many of the powerful, pithy statements made in Mckesson’s book turn flat in the absence of evocative description and context.
....In this deeply felt debut, (Mckesson) combines memoir with discussions of race and violence in America, offering an inside view of the BLM movement ... Much of the book focuses on police violence; together with others, the author created Mapping Police Violence, a national database on people killed by police ... In exploring his personal story of growing up a much-bullied gay black youth, Mckesson notes how comic-book superheroes taught him 'how to imagine' a different America based on faith (that things will be better) and hope (that they can be) ... A compelling account of technology-powered protest.