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Aug 23, 19

This Is America #86: ICE Resistance, Portland Report, Recession

Welcome, to This Is America, August 22nd, 2019.

We have a great show for you today. First, we start with a report from West Virginia, on how people are mobilizing against threats of ICE raids and then speak with someone in Rhode Island about a recent mass mobilization against an ICE detention facility that ended in a brutal attack by guards.

We then speak with someone from Rose City Antifa about this past Saturday’s mass antifascist mobilization. We then switch to a discussion, talking about the economy, a possible recession, and also touch on a recent leaked GOP memo, which orders Republicans to down play rising far-Right violence and blame it on autonomous social movements.

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

Living and Fighting:

In the face of tanking support, a slowing economy, continued unrest, and growing anger over his policies, Trump continues to double-down on attacking social movements and immigrants, his go to enemies when it comes to throwing red meat to his base. This week, Trump announced that his government was now inacting indefinite detention of migrants:

…[it is attempting to] keep thousands of immigrant families in indefinite detention, the children along with their parents. He also lashed out at birthright citizenship, declaring that his administration was “looking very seriously” into putting an end to a right guaranteed by the 14th Amendment to the US Constitution.

The change in Department of Homeland Security procedures on family detentions—long advocated by Trump’s fascist aide Stephen Miller—is the most sweeping of all of Trump’s anti-immigrant measures to date.

Its expect that this move will be challenged directly in court, as it violates previous laws which state that migrant children cannot be kept in detention for more than 20 days and sets standards for their care. While Trump backed down in the face of the #AbolishICE movement following his attempt at family separation, his new strategy is simply to go against the existing legal framework right off the bat, violating both the US Constitution and international law.

The push is also tied in to a drive within the administration and the private prison corporations backing it to build new concentration camps, as the new policy means that whole families would be interned together. With existing camps at capacity, the administration is pushing to build more. This placing of migrants into a permanent state of exception is coupled with Trump’s talk of ending “birthright citizenship,” long a goal of white nationalists and Nativists that would upend Constitutional amendments guaranteeing citizenship to those born in the US and instead make it based on race, status, or devotion to the State.

The Justice Department recently sent out an email to all its employees that included an article from the white nationalist and anti-immigrant website, V-Dare, which is headed by Peter Brimelow. Brimelow is a long time associate of Richard Spencer, and attended the 2016 National Policy Institute gathering in Washington DC where neo-Nazis gave Hitler salutes to cries of “Hail Trump!”

As Buzzfeed wrote:

An email sent from the Justice Department to all immigration court employees this week included a link to an article posted on a white nationalist website that directly attacks sitting immigration judges with racial and ethnically tinged slurs,” according to a letter sent by an immigration judges union and obtained by BuzzFeed News.

In new audio obtained by The Intercept:

The American Fuel and Petrochemical Manufacturers, a powerful lobbying group that represents major chemical plants and oil refineries, including Valero Energy, Koch Industries, Chevron, ExxonMobil, and Marathon Petroleum, has flexed its muscle over environmental and energy policy for decades.

In an audio recording obtained by The Intercept, the group concedes that it has been playing a role behind the scenes in crafting laws recently passed in states across the country to criminalize oil and gas pipeline protests, in response to protests over the Dakota Access pipeline. The laws make it a crime to trespass on public land used for “critical infrastructure,” impose a fine or prison time for violators, and hold protesters responsible for damage incurred during the protest. Many of the laws also carry heavy fines to groups and individuals who support such demonstrations.

The Zapatistas are announcing the opening of new territories and new initiatives and have recently released a flood of new communiques along with a call for a gathering in their territory. This new activity comes in the wake of the coming to power of a new Left president who has promised to push threw a slew of mega-projects which directly threaten Zapatista communities and many suspect, are also linked to a string of assassinations of indigenous organizers.

According to ROAR:

The Zapatistas have created seven new initatives and four new Autonomous Municipalities. In doing so, they have significantly expanded the structural and organizational capacity of Zapatista Autonomy.

More information is expected to be released soon, with more communiques. Meanwhile in other resistance news:

  • The ongoing Black Jewel Miner Blockade is still going strong about 25 days. Supporters on the ground are asking for donations to cover back to school supplies and backpacks for kids who parents are impacted by the struggle and loss of work.
View this post on Instagram

This looks a lot nicer than the one we made with our burner phone ? thanks @mikaelacurry !! Ppl doing the online work to keep these camps going don't often get their labor recognized, but we appreciate you, friend!!

A post shared by @ formerbjacamp on

  • The Yellow Finch Tree Sit and blockade continues, now on its 353 day.
  • Thousands of people in Southern Mexico are protesting new immigration rules put in place by the United States, which state that migrants must apply for asylum in the first country that they come into contact with. Currently, thousands of African refugees are demanding humanitarian visas and the ability to pass through Mexico to get to the United States.

  • In so-called Vancouver, actions continue in support of tent city shelters for the homeless.

  • In Chapel Hill, North Carolina, people marched and celebrated the one year anniversary of the fall of the Silent Sam Confederate statue.

  • This Saturday clashes with police broke out in Brooklyn following tensions over water dunkings of police earlier this summer. As Abolition Media Worldwide wrote:

Police ruthlessly unleashed pepper spray upon families celebrating “Marcy Day” at Marcy Houses in Bed Stuy, Brooklyn, New York. Undaunted, residents defended themselves by throwing various objects at the police, injuring three officers.

According to the Brooklyn Paper:

Police claim locals partying at the Marcy Avenue projects near Park Avenue began hurling glass bottles and other objects at officers responding to reports of an unruly gathering at 11 p.m. on Aug. 17.

Locals shared a different version of events on social media, claiming the event was peaceful until police showed up and started breaking up what one Instagram user called a relatively low-key Marcy Day.

Police responded to a second incident three hours later, when multiple gunmen opened fire as officers responded to another riot at Bainbridge and Thomas Boyland streets, according to authorities.

View this post on Instagram

Just was in the middle of a riot on my way home from the deli. Cops beating people up, spraying people with mace, slamming people's heads into car windshields.. i had permission to film the first guy pouring milk into his eyes, the concerned guy telling me to stop filming wasn't aware.. but anyways #marcyhouses check out all the police running there was about 40 of them update: someone was shooting from the roof across the street…

A post shared by Huey Crowley (@hueycrowley) on


  • Donate to bail fund to help those arrested in Portland.
  • A collection of far-Right trolls and media grifters are holding a gathering in New Jersey and a call-in campaign has been launched. More info here.
  • Support families and kids of miners involved in the ongoing coal blockade in Kentucky by helping them buy school supplies. More info here.
  • Donate to help the Tucson 12, recently facing charges following a noise demonstration. Donate here.
  • Long time political prisoner Russell Maroon Shoatz is in need of support has he fights cancel. Donate here.

Upcoming Events:

  • August 23rd-24th: Bend the Bars Conference in Lansing, Michigan. More info.
  • August 23rd-25th: Another Carolina Anarchist Bookfair happening in Asheville, North Carolina. More info.
  • August 24th: #AllOut to #DefendModesto from White Nationalist “Straight Pride” Rally. More info here.
  • August 24th: Anarchist Picnic in Los Angeles. More info here.
  • August 24th: Protest against white nationalist “Straight Pride” parade in Modesto, CA. More info.
  • August 24th-September 12th: Rainbow Ridge Direct Action Mobilization to Save the Mattole. More info.
  • August 25th: Rally in Seattle Against Far-Right. More info here.
  • August 31st: Benefit for Political Prisoners organized by Bakersfield Anarchist Black Cross (ABC). Show with speakers happening in Bakersfield, CA. More info.
  • August 31st: Benefit for Miguel Peralta in Los Angeles. More info.
  • September 7th: Halifax Anarchist Bookfair. More info.
  • September 7th: Running Down the Walls in Philadelphia. More info.
  • September 18th-22nd: Symbiosis Conference in Detroit. More info.
  • September 21-22nd: Victoria Anarchist Bookfair. More info.
  • September 28th: Toronto Anarchist Bookfair. More info.
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It’s Going Down is a digital community center from anarchist, anti-fascist, autonomous anti-capitalist and anti-colonial movements. Our mission is to provide a resilient platform to publicize and promote revolutionary theory and action.

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