this is written primarily in response to the comments floating back and forth on the call for a black bloc.
as radical anti-authoritarians, we always need to keep tactical strategy in the foreground, even as we admit that there are times when emotion will cause people to rage in ways that may not be tatically sound.
obviously, property destruction is a tactic that black blocers have used in the past, and will use again.
property destruction is very useful for globilazation conferences, because it helps make the whole event seem like more trouble than it's worth - seattle hasn't been itching to hold WTO ministerials anytime recently.
but I concede that property destruction of corporate targets probably isn't the most useful thing for a visiting politician.
that said, I will never hold it against anyone who chooses, out of honest rage, to destroy something that is in the process of destroying everything they've ever held as dear.
which is what these corporate targets are doing. if you disagree with this point, before you criticize that woman with a hammer in her hand and a mask on her face, realize that this -is- what she is thinking about when she 'goes trashing' as they used to call it. and whether or not you agree with her, she reached these conclusions honestly and on her own.
but the bloc, or Ya Basta! [people with padding, usually] are very useful in other ways. usually the bloc represents people willing to take front lines and move crowds forward, taking a brunt of the abuse. the bloc can keep the energy of the crowd up by continually testing and breaking boundaries.
so often, a group of blocers will pick up a barricade and move it, and other people will be moved into the same action.
once the example is set more people will join in after making their own decision about it.
the most surprising people will be found tipping dumpsters over in the street when they realize that it keeps the cops from following them, or the motorcade from getting through.
but the most important thing for people on both sides of this ever-present issue to remember is solidarity.
that over-spoken and under-used word.
there are some great articles of solidarity written up by labor, bloc and pagans [i believe it was] and I wish I had them all to repost here. if someone has them, please post them.
some of the highlights to keep in mind.
- be aware of people you may be endangering by your actions. so if people are locked down in the middle of an intersection, don't show up and break a window or throw a water bottle at the police [throwing water bottles at the police is kinda dumb anyway]
- don't turn other people in. I don't care if you saw that man break the window and you believe that property destruction is violence and you think we should all be ghandi - don't turn people in.
we all need to remember that we hate bush and let each other express that in their own way.
if we could fucking figure this out, we'd win.
those people who tag are right - Unite, Resist.