We Have an Issue: Past, Present, and Future

A look back at the Chicano civil rights movement in Austin; plus, preplanning Thanksgiving

Photo by Jana Birchum

Brant Bingamon spent the summer chronicling Black Lives Matter and anti-police brutality protests Downtown. In this week's cover story, he casts his eye back to an earlier era of political protest: the Seventies' flourishing of the Chicano civil rights movement and founding of the Brown Berets Austin. That history may be nearly 50 years behind us now, but much of it feels familiar today – the persistence of police violence, gentrification, and the passionate resolve of organizers.

While next week technically marks our Thanksgiving issue – look for that on stands a day early – we get a jump-start this week with roundups of where you can find pickup and delivery holiday meals, grocery relief, and volunteer opportunities; your best bets for carbo-loading around town; and even a zero-waste way to wrap leftovers.

Of course, preplanning Thanksgiving this year comes with an extra layer of complication. We're not just juggling oven temps and counter space demands; we're weighing the spiritual needs of togetherness versus the real health risks of gathering outside our home pod. You don't need me to tell you how bad the numbers are or how risky behavior has skyrocketed the COVID-19 caseload nationwide. Instead, I'd like to encourage you to let yourself off the hook.

Have you been stressing over how you could possibly pull off the perfect Thanksgiving during a pandemic? You can't, so let it go. Embrace the unconventional. I'm usually elbow-deep up a turkey butt on Thanksgiving and happily playing host to a houseful of friends. This year, it'll be just a handful of us enjoying sides and pies in my best friend's backyard. I've heard of other people coordinating their cooking for a shared feast over Zoom, or ticking the fellowship box by volunteering somewhere together instead, or forgoing the whole thing altogether for a stay-in-your-PJs day off to just decompress. Every one of these is a better option than stressing out, and vastly preferable to hosting anybody in your home who hasn't been taking COVID-19 as seriously as you.

Whatever you end up doing, take care of yourself, take care of your people, try to take it easy, and try to put some kindness out in the world in any way you can.

Online This Week

Thor Harris and Lyman Hardy's "Dumpster Fire" (Photo by David Brendan Hall)

Art Imitates Life: It's one thing to call 2020 a dumpster fire. It's another thing to turn that idea on its head for a piece of percussive performance art, which is what drummers Thor Harris and Lyman Hardy have done at dadaLab.

A Galaxy Far, Far Away: Relocates to 78727 Mobile gaming powerhouse Zynga announced it will open a studio in Austin dedicated to developing a new Star Wars mobile game.

(Nearly) Worst in Show: An LBJ School study finds COVID-19's toll on Texas inmates is among the worst in the nation.

Big Freedia (Photo by David Brendan Hall)

Last Week in Live Music: Staff photographer David Brendan Hall's gallery features Big Freedia at Luck Reunion's Long Live Music series at the Long Center, Charley Crockett at Love & Lightstream, Fools at the Far Out Lounge & Stage, and more.

Looking the Part MLS team Austin FC unveiled its first-ever jersey on Wednesday.

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