This Is America #73: ROAR Conference, Shallow ‘Socialism vs Capitalism’ Debate

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Welcome, to This Is America, May 17th, 2019.

On today’s show we talk with one of the organizers of the Revolutionary Organizing Against Racism (ROAR) Conference (happening this weekend in the bay area of California) about how they have been organizing for three years to put on a gathering that brings people together across several generations.

We then get into a wide range of news topics in our discussion from climate change, Trump’s wealth, disaster relief and white supremacy, attacks on reproductive freedom and health, to the shallowness of the recent debate of “socialism vs capitalism.”

All this and more, but first, let’s get to the news!

Living and Fighting:

This week, as images were going viral of sprawling detention centers in Texas and Trump touted even more draconian anti-migrant proposals, two more children have died in border patrol custody, the 4th and 5th since December.

Meanwhile, the trial of No More Deaths volunteer Dr. Scott Warren continues, as a series of vigils were organized in solidarity across the US. Warren’s defense has also pushed for the case to be dismissed as it:

…asserts that Dr. Warren’s arrest was a targeted act of political retaliation resulting from No More Deaths’ open criticism of Border Patrol’s human rights abuses. On January 17th, 2018, hours before the arrest, No More Deaths released a report documenting Border Patrol’s routine interference with humanitarian aid efforts. The report was released alongside footage collected over several years showing Border Patrol agents destroying and/or removing aid supplies left in the desert.

No More Deaths has noted that in the same area that Warren is accused of leaving humanitarian aid and water for migrants, four sets of human remains have also been freshly discovered, also located “within walking distance” of so-called ‘rescue beacons’ set up by border patrol, which activated, will bring out BP agents who will then in turn, place the person under arrest.

No More Deaths is also asking people make calls to the US Attorney’s office and ask that the charges be dropped:

From May 13th to May 24th, No More Deaths is asking all supporters to call newly appointed US Attorney Michael Bailey and demand that he drop all charges against Dr. Scott Warren.

520.620.7419

docket #CR18-223-TUC-RCC (BPV)

Script: “I am calling to demand USDOJ drop all charges against Scott Warren. This is in reference to case 18-cr-223-TUC-RCC. Given the crisis of death and disappearance of undocumented people on the border, humanitarian aid workers must be allowed to perform their life-saving work without government harassment and prosecution. I oppose the intimidation of aid workers. Humanitarian aid is never a crime!”

Chelsea Manning is sadly back in custody. According to Sparrow Media:

Chelsea Manning was remanded into federal custody, again, for refusing to testify before a federal Grand Jury. In addition to being held in confinement for the duration of the Grand Jury investigation or until she purges her contempt and testifies, District Court Judge Anthony Trenga ordered Chelsea to be fined $500 every day she is in custody after 30 days and $1,000 every day she is in custody after 60 days.

In Houston, Texas, a medical examiner has ruled the killing of Pam Turner, the 44 year-old African-American woman whose death at the hands of police was captured on a viral video, a homicide. Protests also were organized this week.

In South Miami-Dade Florida, hundreds of people flooded the streets outside of the so-called “Homeland” migrant detention facility on Mother’s Day, demanding that it be shut down. According to the Miami Herald

About 3,200 unaccompanied minors are being detained after crossing the southern border without their biological parents.

The Hearld also reports that soon the facility will grow even bigger with more children. The Miami New Times also reports that throughout 2018, DHS heavily surveilled the Abolish ICE movement.

Also on Mother’s Day, thousands of donors were able to pool resources and bail out 106 African-American mothers from county jails, as part of the “Free Black Mamas” campaign. In Durham, North Carolina, abolitionists also blocked the jail entrance and faced arrest.

In so-called Canada, actions continued both by Parkdale residents against cuts to legal aid as well as attempted evictions, as did they in so-called British Columbia, where the Tiny House Warriors continued the fight against “man camps,” or concentrated temporary housing of pipeline workers.

11 people were arrested in Bridgeport, CT, after police attacked a gathering on the two year anniversary of the police killing of Jayson Negron.

On May 10th, people took to the streets against proposed new jail construction in New York. The next day, anarchists rallied outside of the Indonesian consulate against the repression and arrest of over 600 comrades at the hands of a brutal police force.

On May 12th in Seattle, the Puget Sound John Brown Gun Club reports:

Yesterday, some white supremacist fascists came into our open firearms training looking for trouble. Not only were we able to complete the training despite this disruption, they ran off pretty quickly, playing victim, and cried to a security guard that anti-fascists with guns are organizing against them as they were ejected from the space for harassment.

The small group of fascist lackeys, led by Spencer Sturdevant of the white nationalist group Identity Evropa (rebranded as American Identity Movement), stayed outside the venue and attempted to follow and harass members and take pictures of license plates. We were able to escort attendees out of the building safely after some of our members stood up to them as we ejected them from the parking lot.

(They also tried to interrupt class and play smarter-than-thou about gun laws, but ended up reciting wrong information about carrying while driving. Oh, well! It’s not like we had high expectations for these guys, anyways. 😂)

Thanks for validating our existence and the absolute importance of our mission!
The white supremacists of Identity Evropa got involved in another altercation later in the day while walking in a public park wearing body armor and reportedly carrying guns. They’ve tried to spin that altercation as involving our organization which is untrue.

On May 13th, people shut down a major freeway in New York in response to the start of the trial of a police officer who murdered Eric Garner.

On Unist’ot’en territory:

Spring construction camp started this week. Some of the projects under way today. Root seller storage building. Third attempt. Green house attached to building with built in heat in floor.

In Chicago, members of the Autnomous Tenants Union rallied against a landlord attempting to evict them. Also in Chicago, people showed solidarity with those fighting at DeKalb near Atlanta, Georgia.

The Yellow Finch tree sit in West Virginia against the Mountain Valley Pipeline is now on day 255.

On May 15th, antifascists in Long Beach, California continued to take down and destroy Identity Evropa/American Identity Movement propaganda along with put up flyers detailing the threat of Alt-Right groups like IE/AmIM.

Speaking of fascists, groups like the Proud Boys are now using the platform of Telegram to mass report and harass journalists and antifascists who are exposing the Alt-Right. Movement journalist Elizabeth King was suspended from Twitter recently just for cursing at an Alt-Right troll and was mass reported.

Finally, people in New York have responded to the call for #Fuck12 week with stickers and other mediums.

Support Needed:

Upcoming Events:

  • May 18th: Mobilize against American Renaissance conference. More info here.
  • May 18th – 19th: Come out to the Revolutionary Organizing Against Racism Conference (ROAR) in the bay area. More info here.
  • May 25th: Mobilize against the KKK in Downtown Dayton, OH. More info here.
  • May 30th – June 3rd: Earth First! regional rendezvous in Hudson Valley. More info here.
  • In June be on the lookout for ‘Running Down the Walls’ events happening across the world to benefit Anarchist Black Cross (ABC) chapters.
  • June 12th – 19th: Save the Mattole Direct Action Convergence in Northern California. More info here.
  • June 14th-17th: Fight Toxic Prisons conference. Gainesville, Florida. More info here.
  • June 15th – 23rd: Wild Roots, Feral Futures in Southwest Colorado. More info here.
  • June 19th: Mobilize against Nationalist Solutions conference. More info here.
  • June 29th – 30th: Southern Regional Organizing Assembly of the IWW in Richmond, VA. More info here.
  • August 3rd-11th: Institute for Advanced Trouble Making in Worcester, MA. More info here.
  • August 16th-18th: Indigenous Anarchist Convergence in so-called Flagstaff, Arizona. More info here.

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