Originally posted to It’s Going Down
The last two weeks brought a continued surge in popular action and mobilization, from resistance to the Dakota Access Pipeline, the growing national prison strike, to an out pouring of anger and rioting in the wake of a series of highly publicized police murders in Tulsa, Oklahoma, Charlotte, North Carolina, and Columbus, Ohio. Meanwhile in the background, the drums of war and ‘anti-terrorism‘ began to beat louder, as the far-Right continues to grow in the streets and both candidates attempt to appear relevant to the wider public. As Patrick Martin wrote:
The most important issue in the US presidential election is the one neither of the two main capitalist candidates, Democrat Hillary Clinton and Republican Donald Trump, is talking about: the increasing likelihood that the next US president will order direct military action against Russia, China or North Korea, all countries that possess nuclear weapons.
The mounting danger of such a war was underscored by the US bombing of a Syrian government military post on Saturday, killing dozens of Syrian army soldiers. The US claim that this was done accidentally—against a major, well-known Syrian military installation, the Deir ez-Zor Air Base—has no credibility. A similar US “mistake” could easily lead to the death of Russian soldiers and escalate into a full-scale military confrontation between the two powers that control 93 percent of the world’s nuclear weapons.
Meanwhile, back at home, the rioting in Charlotte underscores the deep divisions that are at play across the US, and the inability of the mainstream “official” organizations to reign the masses back into politics or in the ability of the politicians themselves to calm the fires of revolt. As Joseph Kishore wrote:
Conditions in Charlotte are a microcosm of America as a whole. The “Queen City”—a main corporate center for Bank of America, Wachovia bank, Duke Energy and other companies—has been listed as among the “best places to live,” celebrated as a beacon of progress and “growth” in the US South. However, this applies only to the rich and the privileged upper middle class.
Since 2000, the number of people in Charlotte living in poverty has doubled, from 159,000 to 314,000 (out of a total Metropolitan area population of 2.4 million). It is among the cities with the highest growth of concentrated poverty, with the census tracts deemed high poverty (poverty rates of more than 20 percent) rising from 19 percent in 2000 to 34 percent in 2014. A quarter of all children in the city are poor, and a Harvard study found that poor children in Mecklenburg County have one of the lowest chances of escaping poverty of any county.
In the spirit of bringing it all down, let’s get to the news.
Since our last update two weeks ago, a staggering 30 people have been killed by the police and the amount of people killed in 2016 approaches almost 800, or an average of about 3 people per day. The rate of which the police are killing people continues to be incredibly staggering. For instance, on the days that Terence Crutcher and Keith Scott were tragically killed, on the 20th and the 16th, 5 other people were also killed by police on the same day.
If that doesn’t make your head spin, consider that it was only two months ago that the back to back killings of Philando Castile and Alton Sterling took place, leading to a massive outpouring of anger and action across the US. In many ways, that period of struggle two months ago now seems so far away, as each day and week brings a new atrocity.
We’ll leave discussion on the meaning and role of the Charlotte Uprising to people on the ground, who have already begun to report back on IGD, but we will say that as anarchists and autonomous anti-capitalists, we’re going to have to think long and hard about expanding our tactics outside of what currently exists and begin to maneuver within the current landscape. As the unfolding events in Charlotte show, (yesterday it was announced that the curfew was lifted), we can only sadly expect more of the same and continued use of the National Guard and other repressive measures to put down any collective showing a strength against the police.
This also isn’t to say that resistance isn’t continuing and growing more powerful. As this report was being put together, we learned of a group of young people in Fresno, CA who attacked a California Highway Patrol after it attempted to interfere with a sideshow, busting windows and causing thousands of dollars in damage.
Lastly, we want to share a report that was submitted to us on the recent video that was released showing the police killing of Keith Lamot Scott in Charlotte. They write:
While analyzing the Scott family video along with the rest of the world in slow motion something did not seem correct, something seemed off. Seeing the police litter a crime scene with black latex gloves was weird enough, but realizing what we were looking for was futile. What we were looking for was not there, a gun. Where is the gun the was posted by the largest main stream media groups around the world just one day prior?
This above image shows Keith Lamont Scott laying dead with a gun sitting at his feet after police tape was put up. This image was used by the Charlotte police, and widely distributed by MSM as proof that Keith Lamont Scott was armed.
This above image shows a enhanced still shot from a video that was released by the Scott family prior to the police tape being put up. This image does not show a gun anywhere on the ground.
This video was released by Mrs Scott and recorded the exact moments that her husband was shot, it was slowed down and shows the Charlotte Police littering the crime with black latex glove. What it does not show is a gun anywhere on the ground.
Please let us be crystal clear…this post is not about what the slow motion video shows. It is about what the slow motion video does not show…which is a gun. Where is the gun that Main Stream Media reported? This is the question.
Skinning the Black Snake
Despite a media black out, actions against the Dakota Access Pipeline continue and the camp keeps on growing as people are now preparing for an upcoming subzero winter. In the last two weeks, we saw inspiring solidarity actions take place, with people putting their bodies on the line, as well as the AFL-CIO turning it’s back on the encampment, claiming that the pipeline would be good “for jobs.” The union bosses, long bought and sold to the heads of the Democratic Party, have for over a century been the enemies of all poor and working people, and their backing on this genocidal pipeline only further shows their treachery.
In Minot, water protectors stormed a stage to disrupt an oil industry meeting. According to one report:
Dakota Access Pipeline opponents took over the stage Wednesday as North Dakota’s top oil regulator spoke to an oil industry group’s annual meeting.
The elders of the Oglala Lakota Nation referred to the pipeline as the “black snake” as they took the podium and microphone while Department of Mineral Resources Director Lynn Helms was speaking to the North Dakota Petroleum Council.
“We want you guys to hear our voice and see us,” one woman said. “We’re not just some hashtag out there just making a scene. We want to be heard. We want you guys to understand that we are fighting for our lives, for our children, for our people, the way we have, our culture, our identity.”
In Iwoa, 40 people were arrested as they shut down a construction site for the pipeline, meanwhile protests and shut downs of banks making a profit from the pipeline continue across the US. We hope to continue to see an uptick of actions against corporations connected to funding the pipeline. Let’s get bold, creative, and organized. Remember, there are targets everywhere.
According to DeSmog, Dakota Access Pipeline proponents have been hard at work making fake ass twitter accounts in order to promote the DAPL Meanwhile, pipelines continue to break left and right as Alabama and Georgia have declared a state of emergency and Native tribes have come together to fight. Also, in further weird as fuck #NoDAPL news, the Oathkeepers, a far-Right militia movement, have endorsed the encampment. Check out Last Real Indians for more info and a good critique of these camo wearing dingleberries. Also, we encourage people to check out this excellent critique of non-violence in the #NoDAPL movement here.
In the above video, Corrina Gould discusses further attempts by local governments and developers in the bay area to destroy Ohlone sacred sites.
The Zapatistas marked two years since the disappearance of the 43 indigenous students in Ayotzinapa by calling Mexico a “Narco-Terrorist State.” According to one report:
The Zapatista National Liberation Army denounced the behavior of the Mexican government of Enrique Peña Nieto for “rewarding” people whom the rebel organization accuses of perpetuating impunity in the case of the 43 forcibly disappeared students from the Ayotzinapa teachers’ college.
The National Indigenous Congress together with the Zapatista National Liberation Army, known as the EZLN, issued a statement Thursday condemning the naming of Tomas Zeron as a government security advisor.
Relatives of the 43 Ayotzinapa students announced last week that they were cutting off all dialogue with the Mexican government after Zeron resigned for allegedly tampering with evidence and was then awarded a promotion.
“(The) cynicism and perversion of the political class (…) not only continues to pretend to search for the missing comrades, but instead, with the growing evidence showing the guilt of terrorist narco-state, rewards those responsible for lying and trying to distort the truth even more,” read the statement by the EZLN, referring to Zeron.
“This is what we see when we look up to those in power, for those who murder, engage in cover-ups and lies: rewards and protection – for those who are outraged and protest against injustice: blows and prison,” continued the statement.
Also, the Wixarika indigenous people of Mexico aren’t fucking around, and recently took back a bunch of their ancestoral land. As one article wrote:
With court ruling in a century-old conflict on their side, at least 1,000 Indigenous Wixarika people, also known as Huicholes, are determined to reclaim Thursday a swath of their ancestral land from ranchers in the western state of Nayarit in a mass action that some fear could spark violence.
The Wixarika community from San Sebastian Teponahuaxtla—known as Wuaut+a by the local Indigenous population—in the state of Jalisco, bordering Nayarit to the south, announced plans to accompany federal authorities at 10:00 a.m. local time to enforce a court decision upholding Wixarika rights to the land dating back to colonial agreements with the Spanish grown in the early 1700s.
People in the Ejido of San Sebastian Bachajon also released this communique:
In this meeting which is taking place in the municipal headquarters of Chilón, Chiapas against the acts of the bad government, here with our presence and our voice we want to share the struggle and resistance against all the acts of the bad governors who seek to finish off our people, who want to impose their reforms to the constitution, privatizing oil, education, raising taxes, taking away labour rights and benefiting national and foreign companies so they can exploit our natural resources, forgetting our past and our history.
We want you to know that in this struggle we will continue with dignity and autonomy, we will continue standing in struggle and in expectation of victory, the struggle and the memory of our fallen compañero Juan Vázquez Guzmán still lives and his blood was not shed in vain, our compañero gave his life to transform this world held hostage by the capitalist mentality.
Sports Protest Spread
Colin Kaepernick, a quarterback for the San Francisco 49ers, has begun to launch a strike of sorts, by starting to kneel during the national anthem and refusing to place his hand over his heart. Ironically, in the recent past the Pentagon has opted to pay sports teams to promote the military and patriotism at various games.
While a look at how far these protests have spread across the social landscape in the US deserves it’s own post, to be short and sweet, Colin’s act of defiance has led to many similar acts of defiance in one avenue of social life that historically has been extremely non-political and used as an arena of patriotic and nationalist fever.
The Slaves Will Revolt Again
We’re simple folks here at IGD. We love freedom. We love people coming together to better their lives and communities. We love to see people smash systems of oppression and sling a brick at a Nazis face. Throw in trying to tear down a statue of one of the biggest mass murderers in history of the US on top of that, hell, stick a fork in us – we’re done!
In New Orleans, people gathered to tear down a Confederate statue of Andrew Jackson, and in the process scared the shit out of former grand dumbass of the KKK, David Duke. Duke is currently running for US Senate, something he does every couple of years, and currently looks like really bad chicken that has started to rot. (Fun fact, Duke’s dad was a traveling salesman and his mom was a drunk. Thus he was pretty much raised by his African-American maid – go figure).
The juxtaposition of drumbeats and chants of “No justice, no peace” filled the air on Saturday afternoon (Sept. 24) as hundreds marched toward Jackson Square in an act of protest against the four New Orleans monuments honoring Civil War era figures. For more photos from the protest, click here.
Take ‘Em Down NOLA arrived at Jackson Square at 2:17 p.m., where a horse-mounted New Orleans Police patrol blocked access to the Andrew Jackson monument. At one point, protesters could be heard chanting, “We can’t get no satisfaction until you take down Andrew Jackson,” and some threw liquid-filled balloons at the NOPD command vehicle and spattered EMS Deputy Chief Ken Bouvier of EMS.
New Orleans Police Chief Michael Harrison said seven protesters were arrested during the event. Spoken word poet and activist Chuck Perkins was escorted away by NOPD in handcuffs from Jackson Square. Take ‘Em Down organizer Michael “Quess” Moore said Perkins marched alongside them in opposition to the monuments.
White nationalist David Duke appeared at the locked gates of Jackson Square to speak with the NOPD. Duke, who is seeking to succeed retiring Sen. David Vitter, R-La. in the Nov. 8 election, was only present to speak to the crowd for a few minutes before leaving as things heated up in the crowd.
Kinlaw told protesters they “are prepared to do whatever is necessary” Saturday in their fight for the removal of the monuments. Cars trying to move down Basin Street at Lafitte Avenue honked at the protesters sharing the street with motorists during initial steps toward the French Quarter around 1:30 p.m. An RTA bus had to stop at North Rampart Street at St. Philip Street and watch a black banner displaying the words “Take Em Down” in white glide through the crowd before they eventually entered the French Quarter.
The protesters were greeted with stares from pedestrians in the French Quarter. One man at the intersection of Bourbon Street and St. Philip Street could be heard over the chants as he told his friend that “this is about raising awareness.” Some employees stood in the doorways of their businesses to watch the crowd turn onto Decatur Street before they finally arrived at Jackson Square.
Neo-Nazi David Duke is protected by (oh the irony) police as he attempts to speak for several minutes before slinking back into his shit hole to put his hair piece back on and fix his face-lift.
If you were there in New Orleans, send us a report!
— ATL AntifascistNotes (@afainatl) September 22, 2016
We we reported last time, there is a shit ton of antifa stuff going on and a lot of work that needs to be done, as evidenced by Duke coming back into the picture and Neo-Nazis everywhere using Trump’s campaign like their moment to shine.
In Georgia, a KKK event near Rockmart has been temporarily canceled, however the Hammerskins event on the same day is still taking place at the “Klan bar,” the Georgia Peach. More info here.
Meanwhile, in Houston, TX, there is currently a facebook event for a counter demonstration for a “White Lives Matter” rally outside of the ADL building. If you are in the general region, please come out. Speaking of Houston Nazis, a lawyer dressed up in full Nazi gear just went on a shooting rampage. WTF?! Also, in Dallas, local antifa are organizing against a bar that allows Nazis to openly hang out.
— WarBoy (@WarBoy1991) September 26, 2016
Meanwhile, in Berkeley, administrators are coming down against a person who attended the June 26th mobilization against Neo-Nazis that ended in several anti-fascists being hospitalized.
Mexico On Fire
— jorge dan lopez (@JDyablopix) September 26, 2016
— ubique (@PersonalEscrito) September 26, 2016
— radiozapote (@RadioZapote) September 26, 2016
A lockout of teachers in Brooklyn has ended in a union victory. Meanwhile, in Chicago a strike looms for October 11th as over 96% of the teacher’s union have voted to walk off the job. Also, in Minneapolis, nurses continue to strike.
Meanwhile, anger continues to build in major cities over housing and gentrification. In Vancouver, tenants continue to organize against demovictions while in San Francisco, people are fighting the eviction of a 100 year old woman. In Washington DC, people took action to demand a freeze on rent. According to one report from the action:
The 22nd of September was the national Renter’s Day of Action, with protests in over 50 cities. In DC, tenants from Congress Heights, Museum Square, and other threatened buildings gathered on Alabama Ave by 3200 13th st. Geoff Griffis of City Partners(investor) and Sanford Capitol(landlord) plan to demolish it and the adjacent occupied buildings anyway to build luxury apartments. They are stopped at the moment by Metro refusing to put a related land sale on the agenda. The banner at 3200 13th st read “liberated territory” and police acted like they expected OneDC and Justice First! to sieze the building like what happened at Parcel 42 back in 2010.
Natalia Kresich has a long report up on 48 Hills about the longest rent strike in San Francisco history happening at the Mid-Town housing complex. They write:
Of the 130 households at Midtown, 65 families have been on rent strike for nine months. Striking tenants have refused to pay the increased rent that came with the new lease since August 1, 2015. Some tenants, whose rent is actually decreasing under the terms of the new lease, are striking out of solidarity with their neighbors.
Striking tenants argue that those who did sign the new lease and have already paid the increased rent have only done so out of duress. Some tenants who were interviewed but who declined to be named gave explanations for signing the new lease and rental agreement.
“They told me my rent would be raised to market rate if I didn’t sign,” said one tenant. Another responded, “I didn’t know what to do. I thought I would be evicted.”
So far, nobody has been evicted from Midtown.
This is the largest rent strike in San Francisco since the Ping Yuen North Rent Strike in Chinatown, in which 200 units – out of 434 – stopped paying rent from September 27, 1978 to November 18, 1978. The Ping Yuen residents had been fighting for months to improve the dangerous conditions created by a lack of security around the complex. It wasn’t until the murder of 17-year-old garment worker and Ping Yuen North resident Julia Wong on August 23, 1978 that the tenants’ furor coalesced into an organized rent strike.
Unlike the Chinatown rent strike, striking Midtown residents are only paying the old rent they paid under rent control—the rent that they believe to be fair—making it a partial rent strike. It is unique, however, in that it is entirely self-organized. Of the 139 households, all but 33 of them have had their rent raised. Some of the households who experienced rent decreases are striking out of solidarity with their neighbors by refusing to sign the new lease, as are those tenants whose rent is basically staying the same.
“It’s the principle of it,” says Bowie.
“It doesn’t affect me that much,” says Donald Griggs, whose rent increase was negligible. “But what about my neighbor? That’s my friend we’re talking about.”
Lastly, in Chicago people are rolling up their sleeves and taking over abandoned property and fixing it up to make it fit for human habitation. As one article wrote:
Black men are demanding the city help them with the resources to help rebuild the community. These men are literally in the process of taking over abandoned property and training at risk youth to help fix up the properties that the city is trying to demolish.
Many of the properties are generally in pretty decent condition as far as the frame being solid brick and these men are saying they are not going to allow the city to tear down perfectly good homes.
This happened by way if issuing Interest only mortgages where the borrower paid only the interest and no principal and when the term was up, they were forced to pay interest plus principle which the majority was unable to do therefore losing their properties while hedge fund investors bet against the people and walked away with tons of properties.
These investors slowly take over certain areas which are considered prime real estate and move the minorities out and gentrify the neighborhoods.
Pack the court for Coyote Acabo starting October 3rd. More info here.
Crimethinc’s To Change Everything is now out in a lot of different languages. Check that out here.
The Bay View radical black liberation newspaper is getting fucked with by prisons because of the #PrisonStrike. Please support them here.
Got $10? Buy an antifa flag!
Thanks so much for all of the support that everyone reading IGD has kicked down to us over the last month, the support has been tremendous as we transition towards a sustainable model and begin to offer more content. In the next month we plan to:
- Begin to get together material for a new IGD magazine!
- Get some stickers ready!
- Create more podcasts and hopefully get some new equipment. Speaking of which, if you want to be on the show, email us at info [at] itsgoingdown [dot] org
- Get a t-shirt design ready and printed!
Once again, thanks for all the support that we got this month – a million thank yous to everyone that kicked down. If you haven’t signed up to become a monthly sustainer for IGD, we highly encourage you to do so. Please, even a couple bucks a month helps keep us going and helps us do this full time. Click the banner at the bottom of the page to help us grow and expand.