Filed under: Action, Anarchist Movement, Anti-fascist, Pacific, White Supremacy
Report on coordinated action and outreach against white supremacist activity in Northern California. For more background on the neo-Nazi “White Lives Matter” group, go here.
On Saturday, October 15th, anarchist and antifascist crews networked across the bay area and the central valley of so-called California to carry out a coordinated day of banner drops, flyering, stickering, and the distribution of literature across cities including Turlock, Modesto, Stockton, Davis, Sacramento, Berkeley, Oakland and Nevada County.
Reminder that tomorrow neo-Nazis + white supremacists under banner of 'White Lives Matter' plan to carry out banner drops, flash rallies + sticker campaigns. Our report from April on WLM activity in Ohio, Alabama, Connecticut, Indiana, California + Idaho. https://t.co/R4QbUWcEV0 pic.twitter.com/8VZRifQPlo
— It's Going Down (@IGD_News) May 14, 2022
This action was carried out in response to ongoing neo-Nazi and white supremacist activity in the area under the banner of “White Lives Matter,” which has taken place in the middle of every month throughout 2022. Generally, (in California) this activity has looked like banner drops and stickering in the greater Sacramento area (which both antifascists and everyday working-class people have diligently and quickly removed) as well as several flash rallies in smaller east bay cities. Even these attempts have been met with opposition. After neo-Nazis held banners in Danville in May, locals organized an anti-racist rally denouncing the neo-Nazis the next month, ready to oppose them if they returned.
This week in the bay area, folks in #SanLeandro + #CastroValley held rallies at local libraries in opposition to the Proud Boys recent disruption of a #PrideMonth event. Only a handful of counter-protesters showed up, including white nationalist + anti-LGBTQ bigot, Don Grundmann. pic.twitter.com/s8EOHOqMyG
— It's Going Down (@IGD_News) June 23, 2022
This combative spirit continued over the summer, with cities and towns across the bay area, central valley, and beyond pushing back against Proud Boy and WLM attacks on various Pride and LGBTQ+ events. This growing opposition was highlighted on August 27th, when Modesto saw 250 people take to the streets in opposition to a white nationalist “Straight Pride” rally; sending the Proud Boys packing.
Community members in Southern California have likewise been organizing over the last few months, displaying anti-racist and anti-Nazi banners at different freeway overpasses, after white supremacists linked with the Proud Boys and the Rise Above Movement (RAM) attempted to hold WLM events earlier in the year. This type of grassroots activity shows that not only can broad anti-racist coalitions be formed against the rising white supremacist threat, but that community opposition sends the scum back into hiding.
Over 250 people shut down the white nationalist "Straight Pride" rally today in #Modesto in front of Planned Parenthood. Police attacked the crowd with projectile weapons, injuring several, after it successfully repelled an attack by a small group of Proud Boys. pic.twitter.com/1snmjIcq5i
— OFF THE 99 (@Off_The_99) August 28, 2022
While “White Lives Matter” has currently flooded the news cycle and social media thanks to a stunt by far-Right and anti-Semitic trolls like Candace Owens and Kayne West, neo-Nazis have been organizing under its banner since 2016. In 2021, neo-Nazis on Telegram attempted to organize WLM rallies across the US, but were quickly shut-down by antifascists – both in real life and online.
In 2022, groups including the Goyim Defense League, the National Socialist Movement (NSM), various Proud Boys, and members of the Rise Above Movement began to hold monthly WLM events in an effort to bring together different white supremacist crews under a common banner. While the group has managed to pull off some unannounced flash rallies, protests announced ahead of time have been met with much larger resistance. Despite this, in May of 2022, on the same day that WLM events across the US were scheduled, a white supremacist walked into a grocery store in Buffalo, New York, murdering 10 people after publishing a manifesto about killing Black and Jews on a far-Right website.
There were no nazis on our bridges today. Conejo Valley United Against Hate!!! #weprotectus #thehatereplacement #fcknzs Thanks to everyone who showed up. @canyonmod @LCRWnews @JoyceAl93621812 @lildurkheimm @conejogreens @ReporterDawn @SVAnarchistCol @PacAntifa @Sloot_of_Boot pic.twitter.com/LxpLSUjm4W
— 🌽 Children of the Cornejo Valley Antifascists (@CAntifascists) April 17, 2022
Back in Northern California, wanting to seize the initiative in the face of ongoing far-Right and white supremacist activity taking place against a backdrop of escalating attacks on reproductive freedom and LGBTQ+ people, our network activated to put in work on October 15th. Check out the roundup of action below!
Crews dropping banners reported getting lots of supportive honks from freeway drivers who showed solidarity with our anti-racist and antifascist message, and we feel invigorated that our networks were able to coordinate across so many cities. We hope that these relationships can be used in the future: either in the face of the fash attempting to hold events, storm various meetings, or create a presence for their genocidal and authoritarian bullshit.
Robert Wheldon, 30, of San Diego, CA has reportedly been identified by @PacAntifa as a neo-nazi, Proud Boy, and the head of the "White Lives Matter California" group on Telegram.
They report that Wheldon has been putting up nazi banners all over SoCal. https://t.co/vYxmmQZPIG
— Chad Loder (@chadloder) March 26, 2022
We encourage other organizations, networks, and crews to likewise organize similar days for coordinated action: either around a wider campaign, to help build solidarity and our mutual relationships, or simply to spread revolutionary ideas. Lets not forget to build our own movements as we also work to oppose the far-Right. Too often we get into the rut of being simply reactive, which gives our enemies space to take the initiative and set the agenda.
The Proud Boys and neo-Nazis that have come together under the White Lives Matter banner are dead set in echoing whatever the millionaire pundits on Fox News are pushing, while desperately trying to get people to watch some poorly made neo-Nazi documentary about Hitler. Pathetic. Our communities face real problems: a deepening class war, from the exploding cost of living and rising rent, to a growing ecological crisis marked by drought and massive wildfires, and increasing attacks by the State and the far-Right on healthcare, schools and everyday life. The fascists have nothing to offer anyone, only a more horrific version of this current society and a ‘final solution’ of mass death and dictatorship. Let us continue to get organized and take action. No pasarán!
Fargo, North Dakota came out against the "White Lives Matter" rally today and chased away some white supremacists https://t.co/ISvEjctqz1
— New York City Antifa (@NYCAntifa) April 11, 2021
In closing, the next WLM “day of action” is on November 19th. We encourage all those reading this to take the initiative, link up, and make something happen! As the forces of reaction grow louder and liberals attempt to place all hopes for defeating the fascist creep in the voting booth, now is the time to increase the visibility of community self-defense, mutual aid, and working-class solidarity against white supremacy. Next month – show us up!
Dedicated to the memory of Jennifer Laude and all others lost to the State’s auxiliaries, whether in uniform or skull masks.
Stickers, flyers, and zines distributed in Turlock and Modesto, CA.
Banner dropped in Stockton, CA.
Banners dropped in Davis, CA.
Banners dropped, zines distributed, and stickers put up in Sacramento, CA.
Banners dropped in Berkeley and Oakland, CA.
Stickers put up in Nevada County, CA.