May 20, 2010
LONDON, England – After 12 days of occupying the Mansion building at the Trent Park campus, occupiers were forced to vacate the occupation on Saturday, May 15.
This evening [May 20] around 50 students and staff from half a dozen different programmes at Middlesex University’s School of Arts and Education occupied the library at Trent Park campus.
This building is full of books on philosophy, literature, art criticism, music and culture. These books – and the courses and departments associated with them – are severely endangered by management cuts. We are determined to preserve them.
The Campaign to Save Philosophy at Middlesex
Thursday 20 May 2010, 7:30pm
May 19, 2010, New York, NY —Wednesday, on the anniversary of Malcolm X’s birth, the community organization Picture the Homeless and its Housing Not Warehousing Coalition orchestrated three banner drops. Transgressing into vacant buildings in Brooklyn and East Harlem in the early morning, they dropped banners that read “Homes Not Shelters / Casas No Refugios,” and “Let Housing Bloom…berg.” After an afternoon community concert and rally in the Bronx, they marched to a Chase Bank, from which a third banner-drop read, “Chase: Give us Back Our City! Release Vacant Properties to House the Homeless!” The activists’ presence forced the bank to close-up an hour early.
The day of action comes soon after Mayor Bloomberg installed Seth Diamond as the new Homeless Services commissioner, bringing media and community attention to the administration’s entrenched policies as failed, counter-productive, and cruel towards struggling New Yorkers. The homeless-membership-led grassroots organization Picture the Homeless has long asserted that the many vacant buildings and lots in New York City are a great potential stock of properties to create truly-affordable housing for low-income New Yorkers. PTH is currently advocating for the pending city council legislation Intro 48, which would mandate that the City conduct and publicize an annual census of vacant properties.
The vacant buildings used for the banner-drops are located at 2106 Third Avenue between 115th and 116th Streets in Manhattan, and 24 Bartlett Street between Harrison and Throop Avenues in Brooklyn. The East Harlem building is currently owned by the Starwood Corporation, and has been vacant since 1985. The Brooklyn building has been vacant since 1979, and is held by JPMorgan Chase, the target of a PTH corporate campaign focused on transferring Chase’s vacant, un-used properties into a community land trust for housing for the homeless. The Chase branch the activists marched to is at 270 East 137th Street in Mott Haven.
PTH’s members, supporters, and community allies rallied Wednesday afternoon at Brook Park in the Bronx—not far from the PATH office, where families in need of emergency shelter go. Homeless members of PTH highlighted the citywide housing issues facing all community organizers these days. There were several performances, including by the Bronx-based hip-hop crew Rebel Diaz, and a fresh, full meal was served to all attendees.
PTH member and shelter resident Arvernetta Henry: “Commissioner Diamond needs to know that for people entering the shelter system—it’s horrifying what you go through. Children’s education and adults’ jobs being disrupted and disrespected, adults being told what time to go to bed… You get stuck in the system without the real programs any of us would need when we’re facing hard times. The city pays more to keep someone in shelter than the cost to rent an apartment! Everyone deserves their own space, the dignity to have your own home.”
PTH member Alease Lowe: “Today we are here for our direct action campaign—to lay claim to the housing we all so rightfully need and deserve. We need to end policies in this city that prioritize condos over communities, and a billion dollar shelter system over decent housing programs. Homelessness is not a crime, though we often face bogus ‘disorderly conduct’ tickets for no good reason. Housing is a human right. We’re putting pressure on JPMorgan Chase, which got $25 billion taxpayer handout—because they’re holding onto vacant buildings and lots around the city that are put to no use, while so many people here need a place to call home.”
On Malcolm X’s birthday, PTH members recalled his words: “I for one believe that if you give people a thorough understanding of what confronts them and the basic causes that produce it, they’ll create their own program, and when the people create a program, you get action.”
May 1, 2010
We’ve been getting some calls and texts that a May Day breakaway march caused havoc in the East Village today around noon, with several banks and corporate stores smashed up. More information to follow.
April 29, 2010
From Anarchist News:
By Marek A. Edelman
Let us not be melodramatic or ironic, SB1070 is some fascist shit. For years now ICE has been rounding up our fellow workers, stealing them from their families, children, and communities, often regardless of their immigration status. In 2009, 380,000 people were detained in 350 facilities, and the roundups continue. Detainees are held for months, even years, in conditions often worse than prisons built for “citizens” (although many who are “legally” in the US end up there anyway). Along the US-Mexico border, defense contractors have built massive walls at the safest crossing points, forcing migrant workers to make perilous desert crossings. Many [Editor’s note: hundreds a year] will not make it alive.
This was all true before next week, and now matters are significantly worse. SB1070 will require this Gestapo-like behavior from all law enforcement in Arizona. It gives racist pigs the opportunity to round up whomever they please, for any reason, whenever they want, and turn them over to ICE where they will be, essentially, disappeared.
As anarchists we are aware of the extreme racism that exists in our culture, and that all legislation increases the power of the state, so we are not surprised at the extreme violence and hatred that SB1070 represents, but that does not mean we are not OUTRAGED. More than ever, it is time to attack* ICE, defense contractors, racist organizations who are pushing for this legislation nation-wide, and the politicians who support it all.
This is just the latest step in the expansion of the police state. Let us not forget the Anarchists currently in CMUs alongside unknown hundreds of Arab-Americans locked up without evidence since September 11th.
As one Anarchist News commenter said: “Arizona is now free game for ANY kind of resistance, this ‘Germany in ’36’ shit ain’t gonna fly here. And unlike most of the time when ‘anarchists attack’, I think there’ll be more support for us than usual. It. Is. On.” But we cannot limit our scope to Arizona. Those who support and profit from SB1070 are everywhere. It is time to research, conspire, and act.
The Importance of May Day
Since May 2006 Hispanic-Americans and their allies have marched by the millions across the country. Their solidarity inspires us, but marching is not enough. Demonstrations are not meant to show the dedicated size of an electorate contingency, but are meant to threaten or actualize physical resistance to capitalism, the state, and the police. Mass-movement organizations will pacify crowds at every turn, attempting to control our anger and suppress direct action. A full scale riot almost broke out at the Arizona Capitol Building after Governor Jan Brewer signed the bill into law, video shows police unable to control the crowd, but the peace police did their job for them.
We must make efforts to end the recuperation of May Day— an international day of struggle– by leftist organizations and political parties. Two ideas on how to do this:
1. Show up to your area’s main march in black, agitate, and break-off. Head towards a target. There are some listed below.
2. After/before/instead of the march create an affinity group and attack the target on your own.
Start talking to your friends and comrades today. Find a target near you. See you in the streets. Read the rest of this entry »
April 9, 2010
From Portland IMC:
Today, fifty anarchists arrived at five p.m with the intention of taking and holding space at the intersection where the death of James Chasse occurred. At some point during the night, a creative and sneaky comrade had changed the street sign at the intersection to read “James Ave,” a tribute to the lost community member who was killed at the hands of the Portland Police in 2006.
Immediately, individuals began to break into affinity groups and carry out the tasks they had agreed to do together. While people began stringing caution tape across the intersection, others grabbed wooden pallets and began to stack them together to create a barricade. Banners were hung across these impromptu structures. Others grabbed trash cans, cardboard and other reinforcements. Soon, a dumpster was reclaimed from a near by business and rolled into the intersection and then overturned. Another dumpster soon followed. These dumpsters soon became drum sets, and voices rose to greet them with chants of “another man is deceased, who’s to blame, the police.”
Crowds begin to gather, curious to see why people are demonstrating here. Someone explains that this is the intersection where James Chasse was killed by the Portland Police Department, a man who was a singer and poet, beaten to death by our “boys in blue.” It took the Portland Police Department twenty five minutes to respond. The Portland Police Department deployed roughly fifty bicycle cops and fifteen motorcycle cops. It was also noted that many plain clothes police officers were seen casing the area. The police blocked off two streets and watched while anarchists chanted, spoke and danced inside their barricades. It looked as if the police were very unsure as to how to proceed, and understood that they were being watched by almost two hundred by-standers. The march was able to disperse safely at six p.m, as decided. The action happened on their terms, just like it was intended to. The downtown area was still swarming with police at 6:15 p.m. So far, there have been no reports of arrest. Read the rest of this entry »
March 31, 2010
PORTLAND, Ore. — Someone vandalized the Portland Police union headquarters doing thousands of dollars in damage early Tuesday.
Spokesman Scott Westerman said just before 1 a.m., bricks and rocks were thrown through their windows, doing about $20,000 worth of damage to the outside of the building.
Eight people were arrested and three officers were injured Monday night when protesters clashed with police in downtown Portland in a rally against two recent officer-involved shootings. DETAILS: Police protests
Westerman said computers and other items were damaged inside the office.
No suspects have been named in the case.
More videos from Monday’s march: Read the rest of this entry »