Filed under: Action, Anarchist Movement, Anti-fascist, Midwest
“This is a peaceful protest, but we are not to be fucked with.”
-one of the student protesters
Friday afternoon in Minneapolis saw a mass rally outside of Government Plaza organized entirely by high school students, with the specific goal of taking a stand against racism and fascism. After a rally where students spoke and did spoken word performances and led people in chants, we began marching down 5th street along the light rail tracks, blocking the trains. The Unlawful Assembly marching band and color guard joined in and provided great music for yelling “Whose streets, our streets” to, and so did the motorcyclists revving their engines.
The loud and rowdy crowd made its way to Hennepin Avenue, just in time for baseball fans to start arriving at Block E’s many bars to either pre-game before heading to Target Field or watch the game. With a full police escort following the march from behind (because the students did not collaborate with the cops) we took Hennepin Avenue and began marching south, towards Loring Park.
Other than a few which hecklers, some of whom were hilariously put down by black bar patrons arguing with them or even literally putting a hand over one heckler’s mouth, the march went unopposed. There was little interference from the police, and for the students it really did feel like the streets were truly theirs. As we arrived in Loring Park, a mobile police surveillance camera was quickly loaded down with student protesters blasting Kendrick Lamar’s “Alright” and rapping along.
The march wrapped up in Loring Park with a gathering to listen to more performances, give speeches and reflect on the march and what anti-fascism means to them, and socialize. Many of them said this was their first protest and that they wanted to continue taking the streets and finding other ways to stand up to fascism and racism. One student organizer with a megaphone told the gathered crowd “This march is over, but we are just getting started.”
“I’m black, I’m gay, I’m a femme, I’m a feminist, and fuck the government, I’m an anarchist too. I don’t care what none of y’all say.”
-student protester at the end of the march