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What Does Self-Defense Against Riot Police Look Like?

What does legal self-defense against riot police look like? Rob Thaxton, in jail in Salem, Or., 8 years, for what seems to be self-defense in Eugene Reclaim the Streets protest. 231 protesters criminally charged in Mimai at FTAA protests, 0 cops charged. Prosecutors are friends with cops. Judge in Miami says witnessed 20+ felonies by police with own eyes. No 911 response while we are assaulted by riot police. Tacoma Police Chief rapes you, where do you turn? How do we protect ourselves from police??
FTAA protests swarm with riot police (www.ftaaindymedia.org)
FTAA protests swarm with riot police (www.ftaaindymedia.org)
What does Legal Self-Defense Against Riot Police Look Like?
By Kirsten Anderberg

We are in a societal crisis with police in America. I have said for twenty years that I would prefer to see anyone but a cop at the end of an alley alone, because a cop will get away with raping me and they definitely are armed. As a teen, I witnessed my sister have sex with a Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) officer to get out of a felony crime she got caught red-handed in. My other sister said she, and her women friends, had sex with Boston Police to get out of vehicle tickets and criminal charges. This trend of women giving sexual favors to police to avoid criminal prosecution has been going on in front of me since I was a teen in the 1970's. Knowing that many police officers expect sexual favors in return for criminal immunity has haunted me my whole life.

It doesn't end with sexual harassment. I was in an interracial relationship in Los Angeles as a teen, and the LAPD also found a need to hassle us endlessly. As a white girl, it was a wake-up call, regarding the way police interact with minorities, and their interracial lovers. When I heard ex-LAPD cop Mark Furman say during the O.J. Simpson trials, that he routinely harassed interracial couples as a cop, I knew he was being honest. Once I was sitting alone on a park hill in LA with my lover at dusk, and I swear to god, we were assaulted by 3 police cars, 6 police officers, and a helicopter with a spotlight on us. They rolled the cop cars up onto the grass, jumped out with guns, and told us to "drop the blanket." We did. They searched us, they asked my black boyfriend if he was part of gangs, clubs... when he asked what they were talking about, they literally said, "Are you in the Black Panthers?" I was stunned. He replied he was in the Ku Klux Klan. The police called my parents and told them I was in a park with a black man. My parents said they knew that! Finally, the police left. There was no crime being committed except two interracial lovers sitting on a hill at dusk! I learned early on that police are NOT to be trusted.

Now let's fast-forward to 2003. Mothers, community elders and leaders, peace activists, WWll and Vietnam vets, teenagers, grannies, all converged on the Federal Building, to protest Bush's Iraq war. The peace community had obtained the proper permits for marches, and 7 days occupation at the Federal Building plaza with a stage, sound system, etc. Yet when we got there, we were met by lines of Seattle Police officers anonymous in UNMARKED uniforms, with riot gear, guns that said "LESS LETHAL" on them, machine guns (AR-15's), helmets, shin guards, big baseball bat sticks, and they refused to talk to people at all. Seeing this intimidated many a protester to go home and STAY home after Thursday. By Saturday, these hoardes of riot police acting like Robocops, now included snipers, Federal riot squads, and police from every surrounding county. Everyone assumed these police WANTED to riot, INTENDED on rioting (look how they were dressed), and WERE THERE to riot. If any other group of people showed up like that to a protest, YOU WOULD CALL THE POLICE FOR HELP! So, only the brave continued to protest the war, against the swarms of heavily-armed Homeland Security agents at the Federal Building. Finally, on Saturday eve, March 22, 2003, the SPD and Federal riot police finally got to play riot. They contained peaceful protesters in downtown Seattle, myself included, between Marion and Spring Streets on First Avenue, and they would not let anyone leave and then began to beat people. I am not kidding. I was there. They would not let us leave. They would not tell us what they wanted. And they were angry, unidentified, violent, and beyond all law. They acted like terrorists, I was terrified.

Then in April 2003, Tacoma Police Chief Brahm shoots himself and his wife. Now, Tacoma is an area where police ROUTINELY harass the minority population, and police corruption is said to be tremendous. With the death of Brahm and his wife, in front of his own kids no less, it then came out that Brahm had previously raped a woman, and other Tacoma Police KNEW this. Brahm also failed TWO departmental psychological evaluations regarding his potential promotion to police chief. And yet this guy was promoted to Police Chief ANYWAY. Again, I have known police rape girls and women since I was in my teens in suburban Los Angeles. This did not shock me. The fact that Brahms cried after he raped the woman, saying he would go to his church for help, made me even more sick. Brahsm apologized for the rape to the woman in FRONT OF ANOTHER TACOMA COP! Brahms raped a woman, another Tacoma Police officer KNEW he did it because Brahms confessed IN FRONT OF THE OFFICER, and yet he continued on as Police Chief! Then he killed himself, and his wife, because she tried to get away from him! There were warnings all along the way and everyone knows it. Women are simply unsafe when alone with male police officers, is my gut feeling at this point. There is no method for checks and balances, and this is a very, very serious problem.

Then in June 2003, the Law Enforcement Intelligence Unit (LEIU) hits Seattle, with its national convention, and Seattle rolls out the protest carpet to greet this secretive police organization. Again, protesters go through the process of getting a permit for the rally and the march. Yet, again, riot police showed up, ready to riot. Again, these police refused to wear name tags or badges, they assaulted us anonymously, although we do have their pictures. They used unnecessary weaponry, they beat people, they assaulted and entrapped the crowds, not letting them leave again, on Fifth and Madison Avenues. They drenched crowds with pepper spray and mace, as well as shooting concussion grenades, and machine-gunning rubber bullets from AR-15's, into innocent crowds full of mothers, children, attorneys, and peaceful protesters. Again, police violated the people's trust. Again, the police acted in a way that would have made us call police for help, if they were not the police. And since it was police attacking us, 911 and medics would not help us. They would not enter the containment area, and let police beat, assault, and spray us with toxic chemicals. Thus our need for an organized street medic squad. Like Black Cross or BALM, in Seattle.

Rob "Los Ricos" Thaxton is an anarchist youth from Eugene, Oregon, now serving an 8 year prison sentence for what he says was self-defense, from a rabid Eugene cop he was afraid was going to assault him. The protest was in 1999, it was billed as a "Reclaim the Streets" action. Now, once again, I have witnessed with my own two eyes, the Eugene Police, in riot gear, hyped up, out of control, attacking our youth for no damned reason, except macho adrenaline hype without accountability. According to Mr. Thaxton, he was "attacked by Sergeant Larry Blackwell" at the protest. He says, "I threw a rock up in order to protect myself from an imminent beating, and it hit Blackwell, a glancing blow to his shoulder... I was arrested and charged with Assault II - assault with a deadly weapon." I agree with Philadelphia's Insubordinate Zine, that this sounds like self-defense to me. What is your natural reaction when any armed, angry man charges, to assault you? What would you do? Let Sergeant Blackwell just beat you? It is a dilemma!
(You can write Rob at Rob Thaxton #12112716, OSP 2605 State Street, Salem, Or. 97310).

Then we saw the FTAA riots in Miami this November. The pictures coming out of that riot resemble what I have seen in Seattle and Eugene, with swarms of crazed police, overdressed in riotous clothing (talk about people who come prepared and dressed to riot!), acting as if they are contracted terrorists! Is it a coincidence that Seattle Police guided Miami Police in their riot tactics for the FTAA protests, and it turned out so bloody and dangerous? No, it is not. How on earth any city could look to Seattle Police as any example of what to do RIGHT in riots is only laughable at this point. Seattle made WORLD HISTORY due to the extreme violence police caused at the 1999 WTO riots! It is a shameful scar on Seattle's past. Yet no police officers were convicted of crimes for any of that! On Dec. 20, 2003, in the Miami Herald, it was reported that Judge Richard Margolius, 60, a judge presiding over the cases of FTAA protesters in court, said in open court, that he saw "no less than 20 FELONIES committed by police officers" during the demonstrations. According to court documents, the judge was quoted as saying, ''Pretty disgraceful what I saw with my own eyes. And I have always supported the police during my entire career, This was a real eye-opener. A disgrace for the
community.'' The judge said he may have to take himself off the FTAA cases, due to neutrality issues, saying ''I probably would have been arrested myself if it had not been for a police officer who recognized me,'' said the judge.

Judge Margolius also said he could not recognize officers that he knew, because ``everybody had riot gear on.'' Yeah, we have been complaining about that in Seattle incessantly, to no avail. This covering up of all identifiers at riots by police is very incriminating, in my opinion. They do NOT want people to know who they are once they put on their armor and go out, like thugs in the street, to beat people and create mayhem and chaos. They want to be faceless robots in a crowd, which is in direct violation of Muni Code 3.28 in Seattle, which says all police on duty in Seattle need proper ID, at ALL times, while on duty. I have gotten to a point of advocating MEMORIZING your local cops' FACES, so you can say "Hey Bob, how are the kids Betty and Jim, and your wife Margo?" as he starts to beat you, giving him a reality check, letting him know YOU KNOW WHO HE IS, BEFORE HE STARTS THE BEATING. In Seattle, we have downloaded lists of all the SPD officers' names and ranks, and we have taken their pictures at riots, and we have begun making files of police, with information on these police, such as their pictures, files of repeated reported violence from certain officers, which officers spray gases first, which officers carry the grenades, tactical vests, and AR-15 machine guns, profiles of their careers, past police conduct, etc. At this point, we feel a need to police our police. Knowing who these cops are, what their past behaviors have been, etc. guides us in who we should trust or not, who we should interact with or not. Copwatch.com, www.copwatch.com, has a data base of police crimes, and all involved in Miami riots should lodge complaints there. So far, approximately 231 protesters have been charged with crimes in Miami, but no police, as usual, are being prosecuted. I AM SMELLING THE CORRUPT PLEA BARGAINS BREWING AT THE MIAMI PROSECUTORS' OFFICES ALREADY. This is part of the problem of the incestuous relationship between police and prosecutors. Prosecutors do not prosecute their cop friends. As the judge said, it was knowing the cop that prevented him from arrest. According to the Miami Herald, the executive assistant to the Miami Police Chief John Timoney said, ``The chief's not going to comment on something this vague. If the judge would like to file a complaint with the CIP [Citizens Investigative Panel] he can do that like any other citizen.''

Yeah, let's talk about these supposed police accountability panels. Seattle has one of these things too. It is called the Office for Police Accountability (OPA). Many of us lodged complaints against the Seattle Police for violent assaults on peaceful protesters in March and June 2003, and nothing has been done AT ALL. The set-up of the Seattle OPA is hilarious. The Seattle Police spokesman for the OPA is barred from saying anything critical about the Seattle Police as part of her job contract! The OPA is not open to citizen review. There are HUGE problems of accountability in the Seattle OPA, and I can only assume that the Miami CIP is a joke too. We will see. If they start convicting these police for the 20+ felonies that just one judge on the scene witnessed, maybe their system works. But I have yet to see proper prosecution of violent felonious police officers in the recent rash of violence on America's streets caused by riot police out of control, drunk on Homeland Security powers. Yet, this problem precedes 9/11 and Homeland Security. No police, that I know of, were prosecuted in the Seattle 1999 WTO riots that stunned the world due to the extreme police violence!

Is this some kind of bad joke? What are we supposed to do, as peaceful citizens, who oppose our president's policies? Are we allowed to peacefully protest with free speech rights in America OR NOT? NOT, seems the consensus, lately. I am very concerned about police in America right now. They are demonstrating repeatedly that they are totally out of control, lacking any accountability to their own constituents, and are violent in extreme measures, so extreme that intimidation has GOT to be part of the motive here. Intimidation tactics to scare protesters into staying home. Intimidation tactics that say that police have a RIGHT to HURT YOU if you DARE protest nonviolently in American streets. Police who KNOW they will GET AWAY WITH BEATING YOU. Police who will waive criminal charges, if you give them head. Police who sting and pinch and scorch the free speech rights of America off, inch by inch. I want to know how legitimate LEGAL self-defense looks against violent cops in America. I saw Kent State. I have seen our own military and police OPEN FIRE on nonviolent Anti-Vietnam War protesters, killing American students for free speech, on an American college campus, in my own life time. Government officials have learned nothing as a society, from the civil rights and Vietnam-era protests, apparently, regarding police and protest. Or have they learned from those movements to scare and beat the hell out of us BEFORE we become a powerful national movement? I assume police will beat protesters violently at the DNC in Boston and the RNC in NY in 2004. The Boston Area Liberation Medic Squad, www.bostoncoop.net/balm, the BALM Squad, is holding a training in street medicine in Feb. to train protesters in first aid, since emergency services will not help us when assaulted by violent police. Email them at  bostonmedics@riseup.net for info.

What are my options if I am raped by, say, the Police CHIEF of Tacoma? It happened folks, and Brahms was not prosecuted AT ALL. What are my options if I am married to a violent Police Chief who would kill me before he would let me leave him? Well, Brahm's wife told the Tacoma police she was in danger, and now she is dead. The Tacoma Police Chief shot her to death. My sisters, more than one, had sex with police to avoid criminal prosecution. How safe am I, as a woman, in this society, with cops like this? Are the cops really someone I can go to for protection from harm? Are copshops a place to go to report rape by a police chief? And how do I defend myself from violent cops without going to jail for 8 years like Rob Thaxton? How do we get the police review boards to actually work for citizens, not cops? How do we get prosecutors to charge their own buddies with the crimes they commit? This is a mess, folks. Like Judge Margolius has said about the FTAA riots, "This was a real eye-opener. A disgrace for the community.'' I, too, had my eyes opened by violent Robocops on Seattle streets. Once your eyes are opened, you never feel safe closing them near cops again.

homepage: homepage: http://www.kirstenanderberg.com
address: address: Seattle, Wa.


What would Louis Lingg do? 21.Dec.2003 12:19

.

What would Louis Lingg do?

louis lingg would... 21.Dec.2003 14:57

kill himself

louis lingg would kill himself by exploding a dynamite cap in his mouth. is that what we are supposed to do?

Who is Louis Lingg?? 21.Dec.2003 17:43

curious...

see title

little correction 21.Dec.2003 17:55

her

Umm.. Rob "Los Ricos" is going to be 44 years old in a few days (Dec 31st if anyone wants to send a card.) Just because someone is immature doesn't make the an "Anarchist Youth". Plus, he's from Texas, not Eugene.

Louis Lingg 21.Dec.2003 21:15

Blackbird

Louis Lingg was a Haymarket anarchist sentenced to hang under the conviction of conspiring to throw a bomb into a crowd of police officers. Rather than being hung, he commited suicide in his jail cell.

Twenty-one-year-old German-born Carpenter Louis Lingg enthusiastically embraced the principles of anarchism and the violence he thought necessary to emancipate the working class in his final address before the court that convicted him of participating in the bombing.


Ironic, however, that Louis would advocate the use of dynamite against the State, while using a dynamite capsule to take his own life, rather than facing his sentence with the defiance and hope that he so spoke of.

""if they use cannons against us, we shall use dynamite against them." I repeat that I am the enemy of the "order"of today, and I repeat that, with all my powers, so long as breath remains in me, I shall combat it. I declare again, frankly and openly, that I am in favor of using force. I have told Captain Schaack, and I stand by it,"if you cannonade us, we shall dynamite you." You laugh! Perhaps you think,"you'll throw no more bombs"; but let me assure you I die happy on the gallows, so confident am I that the hundreds and thousands to whom I have spoken will remember my words; and when you shall have hanged us, then—mark my words—they will do the bombthrowing! In this hope do I say to you: I despise you. I despise your order, your laws, your force-propped authority. Hang me for it!"

Bearing the question - which is a greater act, taking ones own life as to be untouched by the State (physically, though apparently psychologically), or to take the fate forced upon one by such authority?

source -  http://historymatters.gmu.edu/d/45/

The "violent" Louis Lingg 22.Dec.2003 00:08

xyzzy

Twenty-one-year-old German-born Carpenter Louis Lingg enthusiastically embraced the principles of anarchism and the violence he thought necessary to emancipate the working class in his final address before the court that convicted him of participating in the bombing.
Nobody ever made a convincing case that Lingg actually used violence in the pursuit of his political goals. He did (as your quote shows) advocate violently retaliating to the use of violence (and he certainly had a gift for words in doing so). But so far as I know all he did was advocate, not use.

And the Haymarket trials were rife with irregularities, not the least of which were a packed jury and a biased judge. Read Governor Altgeld's message on pardoning the surviving Haymarket anarchists for a good summary of the gory details. So Lingg's conviction can hardly be said to be evidence for the use of violence, either.

To this day, nobody knows who threw the bomb. Tellingly, Altgeld's pardon message itself mentions that it is only logical and to be expected that violent retaliation of the sort Lingg advocated will happen:

Again, it is shown here that the bomb was, in all probability, thrown by some one seeking personal revenge; that a course had been pursued by the authorities which would naturally cause this; that for a number of years prior to the Haymarket affair there had been labor troubles, and in several cases a number of laboring people, guilty of no offense, had been shot down in cold blood by Pinkerton men and none of the murderers were brought to justice. The evidence taken at coroners' inquests and presented here shows that in at least two cases men were fired on and killed when they were no occasion to shoot, yet nobody was punished; that in Chicago there had been a number of strikes in which some of the police not only took sides against the men, but without any authority of law invaded and broke up peaceable meetings, and in scores of cases brutally clubbed people who were guilty of no offense whatever.
You close by asking:
Bearing the question - which is a greater act, taking ones own life as to be untouched by the State (physically, though apparently psychologically), or to take the fate forced upon one by such authority?
I'd have to say whichever one makes the best propaganda for the cause.

Portland

The war on our streets 22.Dec.2003 02:11

Aunt Sam

This is an incredible article. It is well written and very well laid out. It is difficult to see a way out of this conundrum, isn't there? There are already to many political prisoners inside our jails, and I don't believe we need more. I don't think that fighting the state with sticks and stones is going to provide a way out of the Bastille ™. As more and more of our jails are becoming privatized and corporately run and owned, we need to realize that they want us in there. They then receive the money from us that we withheld in boycott. It is essential that work is done stopping the privatization of our prisons. Next they will be trying to privatize our courts, hmmm? Never a felon seen by Walmarts Judge ™. As they come forth into the courtroom wearing their Gap Robes, and Target Robes talking about freedom, freedom from... .

I have to disagree on some of your conclusions. While I disagree with the institution of cops, jails, and the judicial system, ( note the judge who is accepting plea bargains from activists while the cops whom he gages to have committed twenty felonies in one day in front of his eyes, walk free after raping, maiming, and brutalizing the hard working folks of this fine land.) I must say that this is not the final personality of the police force. I have known fine individuals who were police officers. They were in the positions for job security, pensions, and a general desire to help people. Unfortunately they have been bonded over to the will of corporations, enforcing archaic and racist laws and subject to the whims of dictators.

After a while people go nuts when they live with war. Like Vietnam, Korea, desert storm, the drug war has created weird disorders in our police force. Unable to cope, and unable to seek help, often not rebuked for their violence due to mental distress, these cops are often at the whims of beaurocracies. Without citizen over site, and with out being able to elect the sheriff and deputy, we have essentially created a cesspool of crime. Officers who seek to get help due to the war on our streets are often rebuked for this. Upholding the law is almost impossible to do without breaking the spirit of the law in which it was intended. With these factors tallied, our police force has become mostly a government tracking agency, not bent on the protection of our citizens but the surveillance of our citizens by the increasing corporatized business of the judicial system.

Many cops, uneducated and unread find themselves at the mercy of their disorders and the system in which they can not change but must enforce. Isolated and lonely in their disease, pariahs of society, and leaches to the teat of corporate authority they often seek suicide, alcoholism, and murder as a way out. Police officers should actually be pitied for the intense psychological scarring in which they have been incurring as corporations make them goons in the name of the almighty dollar.

So how do we seek a redress of grievances against an immoral and amoral system? These questions plague me. Obviously the Coup failed against Chavez because of the guards or the military police. The fact is, that the mental disorders carried by a large number of police officers who work "the war on the streets" keeps progress from being made. Many of these war torn humans simply want to be able to go home, put their feet up and relax, and have some fucking love around them. But because of a completely inept system most of them go home to beat their wives, children, and drink too much.

I think that the best place to start is by demanding police oversight. Make a petition in your neighborhood asking to elect your local sheriff and mortician/ coroner. Put this on the ballot. Demand a citizens elected police review board. Also make it common knowledge the names and badge numbers of the entire police department. Also we should have background checks posted as public knowledge. If they can run my Id for a record I should be able to run theirs.

If this had happened in Portland, an infant would never have been attacked physically by a cop perpetuating an intense child abuse at a pro free speech rally against the political fundraising campaign of George W Bush.

Portland we have a long way to go with our police force. With Kroeker we saw a horrid man whose attack and response system of protection often under minded our constitutional rights. Under our new chief of police we must get oversight before more incidences arise. After all we still have the same war torn and untreated veterans standing defiant of our constitutional laws and ready to attack us. And we have few lonely voices of police officers raised asking how long, we as citizens will let our system fail us so terribly?

Implications of this 22.Dec.2003 15:02

anarchist

What this means is this: when the state attacks you with armed force and you have to defend yourself, its for your entire life,it's for keeps!
If you are sucessful in resisting and escaping and do not have to cripple or kill your opponent in the process, its probably over. This is especially true if they don't know who you are and cannot easily find out. If you lose and are captured, you will wish you were dead. In other words, this is to the finish, and you need to have the attitide that they have to burn you to the ground before you would surrender.

First and foremost, when its just you and them, speed is your best defense. There are very few places where running from the cops other than in a motor vehicle is prosecuted as a separate offense at all, so its not even an escalation, contrary to what the cops would claim. If they come after you and you are close to cover, RUN! Do not stop unless tackled or to fight if your opponent is closing on you. Work on running speed nad distance, or on your sprint if you use a bike or skates. Best cover is somepace you can get out of sight and emerge by any of a great many exits. Next best is a crowd friendly to you and hostile enough to the cops to stop a chase, like the mosh pit at a show. Suprisingly good if you can swim and good cover is on the other side is any river or large creek. Most cops will not go in the water because it will soak their uniform and is bad for their gun and radio. Get in and swim fast before they can land more cops on the other side-then immediately get out of sight, somewhere indoors and stay there at least an hour. Do not worry about hypothermia if this is for real-death by hypothermia is far better than being beaten to death or serving life!

If you cannot escape and the consequences of capture are unacceptable(like a beating), you absolutely must,must,must use enough force to win! Otherwise you are in some really deep shit. I would suggest that people who are routinely harassed and not absolute experts in combat should always carry pepper spray in at least the 10% strength. Get it at gun shops or through ads in paramilitary magazines to get that high powered stuff. Do not rely on that dilute pepper spray in 5 or 2 1/2 percent! Although it is still a felony in most places,a maced cop is not the kind of manhunt-generating incident a shot cop is, but will take him out of the fight nine times out of ten. Also, he cannot shoot you if he cannot see you. If the pepper spray fails, the fight continues so be ready to escalate if necessary.

Tasers also work, but have three problems: One, they are expensive. Two, they are hard to get(the dart and wire kind is anyway); and lastly, they stop working the moment you pull off the wires and run for it! In your home, you need to have the best weapons you can make or buy and show no mercy for any attacker, as you will receive none from burglars or anyone else. Let them know that any attempt to storm your house will be resisted "with no quarter asked or given!" That makes a raid an expensive proposition involving a lot of manpower and special equipment and will deter many casual attacks by just that cost factor alone. During the 1990's, many rural police departments would not take on any member of the right wing militia movement for precisely that reason, to such an extent that some members even got away with driving unregistered cars without tags but clearly marked as militia so cops would know who not to screw with. At that(highly provocative) level, it sometimes worked, sometimes not.

If not defending yourself means a certainty of being severely beaten or spending a week in jail and defending yourself means having to kill yourself or serve a decade if you lose, than you damned well better get serious right now about being able to win. This means working on your physical condition beginning today, it means making contingency plans now, having a "go kit," always packed and ready, and having anything else you think you might need. The rules here are the same as when two nations go to war-if you are conquered your enemies can do whatever they want, so don't fool around or use half measures when it comes to resistance.

The best defence is a good offence 22.Dec.2003 19:18

Michael b

Are mass mobilzations enough? I do not believe so. Bush bombed iraq, millions marched, many lawfull acts of civil disobedience occured. Bush declaired to the world that they were wrong and that he would simply plug his ears and retire to his ranch. He's not alone. The leaders of this nation live in an insular world surrounded by others that concur with thier imperialist agenda. Imperialism or the defined act of building an empire through conquest happens inside and out of borders. The -afta's are proof enough. The question remains what are we going to do about it? If we are to have any hope of building a movement that is relevant to the burdens of people in the US it must be capable of excercising control over these oppressive elements. I know of many militants that support social or revolutionary community building efforts. I know of very few community builders who would show public support for forcefully removing the current political structure. Why? I was recently told that community building is "safe." That supporting revolution as defined by most people "the forcefull overthrow of a government" is simply a sign of mental imbalance. Why? Because it rejects your personal safety. I've been told by many involved in community building activities that this is the primary reason why they support mass mobilization and only mass mobilization as the path to social and political revolution. Because "others" wouldn't support it. The question then becomes givin that the power elete of this country run things - At what point is others oppression so great that we will act outside this comfort zone. For Rob Thaxton it was a matter of self defence.
I would and have avidly supported social community building efforts. Time and time again I encounter people ingaging in community building efforts who will do anything they can to undermine support for the overthrow of this currupt regime. This excludes me from many social efforts. I whole heartedly hope that as we go into the future all who would call themselves revolutionaries will work to address this bitter dichotomy, and begin the fight to win.

I am not in any way advocating that people commit themselves to targeted violence at protests. Tacticly the playing field is too uneven. Only fight if you can win or directly let others escape, marshall your strength for that time.

What we need is retaliatory justice, relevant to the times.

check this out.
 http://www.arissa.org/main.html

Lingg 22.Dec.2003 21:04

Carebear

Lingg would suck the black radiator hose

Prisoners need us 23.Dec.2003 11:24

me

Anarchist wrote "What we need is retaliatory justice, relevant to the times". Yea that is what we need alright.
Any movement that does not support itz detainees is a sham - misquote apologies to a prisoner.

This movement is a sham. Sure there are some that never sleep, that care, that keep on caring about the people captured. They need to survive too. Send them money.

This is serious and peoples lack of concern is so bogus. talk talk talk about Lingg all you want. Read for the rest of us. Involve prisoners in your talk via the u.s. mail. They get to read alot too. Send them this thread. They are forgotten while we struggle to survive each day or are trapped in the society of money and ample things. If you have ample money and you care about justice then send money to political prisoners -that includes alot of prisoners especially most women prisoners) . If they are forced to work, they earn little. Support womyn prisoners or programs that support them. search Lori Wetzel and women prisoners. She does good work to help women have support so they don't go back to the ways that got them in prison...it is support. If you have enough money to go to a rally, then send some to prisoners. You do not even have to know them...just send money. Check out Lily at Break the Chains. She can tell you women that need money to see there kids or for personal hygene items or for medicine.

We are letting them take us down. A small amount of attention from out here has effect on the inside. These are basic human rights. Fight for prisoners, for their children, for homeless children for homeless people's right to exist and survive -that it is our birthright. Support forest defenders that are imprisoned. Ask them what they need you to do. Support eco prisoners keep their voice alive.

Where is the protest for prisoners? Where are the tens of thousands?

There is no justice. Eugene is a sham on so many levels, why would i not have suspected it from the courts here. If you think you are protected you are wrong. The Justice system is a sham. Fight and include the prison industrial complex in your readings before you march off to a protest. If you have extra money and or time, and you need to talk to someone about who needs it, i can help.  sequoia022@yahoo.com

Thanks for remembering or mentioning Rob los Ricos in your article on street riots and self defense. It is rare. Rob is not from eugene. Rob receives very little support from eugene. After 4 years incarecerated, statistics rage true...support drpos off (after 2 years)
This town made an example out of Rob and it worked. He was visiting town for the reclaim the street rally turned riots by the cops. My small friends were radicalized on that day-pepper sprayed in the park changed them. The year the eugene copz came out to model their riot gear. 1999. We were not amused.

Rob did not give an address when he was arrested - wrong move in this town...homeless are either fined out of town or into prisons. Had he sid he was drunk and that is why he acted as he did? probably would have been matrixed out. No it is his politics, his skin color and his political wriitngs. He used to be youthful...He is not that anymore. He lives in the only maximum security prison in oregon adn he is labeled as a security threat group member based on his anarchist beliefs. He is a gang member in prison. He is accused of being in elf and he has been in prison...go figure? He is housed with criminals. Murderers, rapists, and people who just are very violent. The chit chat about violence is boring. Violence is fucking prison. Violence is the guards and the judges.
We are letting them take us down. There should be a support house nearby every prison. People are not doing enough! Books for prisoners-great- you are doing something but are you directly supporting prisoners? Are you a rep for them in day to day issues. Great if you are doing something anything. four star - good job - We need to be a voice out here for them in there. We need to be there for them. We are not at this time. This movement is a sham sham sham

re lingg 23.Dec.2003 18:24

clamydia

Ling decided to take his own life rather than be paraded out in front of the masses as a trophy. He chose to die with dignity, by his own hand rather than by the disgusting, disease-ridden hands of the state.

Rob's case as an example of necessity of resistance 24.Dec.2003 10:44

Changing Weather

Rob's case is a classic example of what happens if the pigs attack and you are captured after so much as being accused of using(inadequate) force in self defense. I feel that in this case, assuming he was held without bond and that refusing to appear was thus not an option, he should consider ecaping from prison and fleeing to a nation hostile to the United States. It's up to him to decide what to do, as it is his life, but I feel that the option of taking it back exists if he is willing to forego living in the US and its allies in the future.

Even Supermax prisons have been broken out of. Never say it can't be done. Remember, the Weather Underground was able to break Timothy Leary out, and when they were on the run themselves, even on the FBI's Most Wanted lists, they were able to stay free until the Feds lost interested and negotiated an end to their cases.

Prisoner support means more than talk. It means putting intense pressure on the authorities when someone is abused, like when Free was put in the hole over an article he wrote for the Earth First! Journal. It means making the lives of wardens and guards miserable if our compatriots in the hands of evil are singled out. It means supporting the choices our comrades in captivity may make, whatever they may be with the sole exception of snitching on others in return for a lighter sentence. Guilty plea without testimopny against others, not guilty plea, technical defense, political defense, refusing to appear, fighting to the death when cornered, all off thse are valid choices and all of them need to be respected as no two people are alike.

During the Vietnam War,the Weather Underground took prisoner support to the max(the Supermax?) both in terms of breaking people out, and in terms of retaliating when George Jackson was murdered in custody. In addition, perhaps the authorities need to be reminded that the deadly Attica prison uprising was organized by political people they were stupid enough to put in prison, Sam Melville in particular(of the Jane Alpert Collective). Melville was murdered by the cops at the end of teh rebellion, presumably to keep him from starting another one.

Although Weather Underground politics were riddled with problems, reflecting the factionalism that weakened the Left at that time, they were effective at carrying out tasks they had chosen to do. Anyway, breaking out of prison beats the hell out of having to end your own life-although thats also an option for some that allows them to bear risks they could not otherwise consider. Anyone considering the latter should look into the former first-and remember that each shift of guards has eight hours a day to figure out how to keep people in, but each prisoner has 24 hours a day to figure out how to get out.

There is one other factor here. Prison abuses can rile up other fighters like nothing else. During the Civil War, General Sherman's troops behaved like any other invaders until they found the Andersonvill POW camp, where Union prisoners were tortured and starved to death. After Andersonville, they became as brutal and ruthless as possible. They burnt Atlanta to the ground and pillaged and burned a fiery path of destruction from Andersonville to the sea, commiting some of the worst atrcocities of the Civil War as a result of their anger.

Killer Cops 24.Dec.2003 23:16

Pdx Cops kill on Christmas eve.

I too am a woman that fears the police more than just about any other social predator.

On Channel six right now they are talking about a shooting (police involved)
at 170th and se division.


Let's do something about this.....

para todos los que luchan por libertades, que protestan hoy en todo el mundo 27.Jul.2004 19:58

olga morgan 4 olgamorgan4@sbcglobal.net

El miedo a la policia y a el gobierno se quita con la razon del que hay que luchar. Hay que luchar energicamente, y sin miendo, ya que es la unica manera de un cambio. La violencia se refrena con la resistencia a ella. La union de todos con la razon del derecho a vivir seguros, nos hace valientes, nos da Dios mas que nada la fuerza y energia necesaria para enfrentarnos al opresor, explotador y abusador. La vida es una sola, hay que vivirla con la mayor dignidad que uno pueda. Como quiera que sea, para semillas no quedamos. todos nos tenemos que morir un dia, pero mientras ese dia llegue, hay que seguir viviendo sin permitir que nos destruyan nuestra dignidad como ser humano. Piensa esto! De los cobardes jamas se ha escrito o se ha dicho nada! Que Dios bendiga a todos los que luchan por la justicia, libertades y una vida mejor con esperanza en El! Olga Morgan 4