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General Strike

Kyle Mckinley

Produced by Kyle Mckinley

This image was inspired by an un-signed street-art piece that I encountered. I really didn’t so much “create” it as “modify” an existing idea by changing a more symbolic “love” heart into something more anatomical. So I’m flattered and slightly uncomfortable with being attributed as the “artist,” but I am very happy to see it circulate so widely. It seems to me that it resonates with people because it captures this idea that love and resistance are intertwined. On the one hand this has been something of a cliché in anarcho-punk circles for decades, like the ubiquitous patch explaining that “your heart is a muscle the size of your fist.” But on the other hand that sentiment is taking on new meanings in our current political moment, as folks organize together with their neighbors and chosen family for safety and protection in the face of vigilante terror and the growing specter of state violence. That is what solidarity looks like. In that sense this image serves as a daily reminder for me that there’s nothing weak or passive about loving and caring for one-another, and, by the same token, that resistance to racist, misogynist hatred needn’t be – indeed cannot be – macho or tough. We have to be fiercely caring and careful with each other.

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