portland independent media center  
images audio video
newswire article creative united states

community building | environment | green scare

A Response to the “Green Scare”

We must have a movement response to the government-incited "Green Scare." Our response to Operation Back-fire, and the demonizing of environmental and animal defense, must be with our love for, music inspired by, and stories about the natural places and critters we love. I propose organizing a nation-wide tour would be like an old-fashioned radio show, and feature an evening of stories, music, photographs, and poems that define and celebrate the environmental and animal-rights movements.
From within the nooks and crannies of our forests, deserts, grasslands, coastlines, and cities, we must reemerge back into the public sphere. The government-incited "green scare" has forced our love for the environment and our passions to protect all that is wild into the backrooms of our communities. Speaking out for environment can now be held against you. Although the recent arrests of 15 individuals have sent chills down our backs, we cannot allow the ripple effects to be felt in the natural communities that are continually at risk.

How can we fight back?

Vigils and protests are not enough. I propose that we organize a nation-wide tour that presents that soul and spirit of our movement. For most of us, it was the direct experience of bull dozers and chainsaws, contaminated lakes and gutted animals, strip malls, blocked vistas and dammed rivers, that convinced us that, unless we decided to do something about it, all wild places and creatures would be paved under the path of capitalism and progress. And when times have been tough, it has been the music, the stories, the poems, and the spirit that has kept us going. It has always been the musicians and storytellers who have inspired us, and maintained the connection between everyone in the movement.

Our response to Operation Back-fire, and the demonizing of environmental and animal defense, must be with our love for, music inspired by, and stories about the natural places and critters we love. This nation-wide tour would be like an old-fashioned radio show, and feature an evening of stories, music, photographs, and poems that define and celebrate the environmental and animal-rights movements. The way I envision the production would be set up very similar to the current national production of "Appalachian Vanguard"— a collage of stories, music, and photos about the history and passions behind the movement's culture. There would be a narrator on the side of the stage that would say 1-2 minutes about an activist, place, or event, and then it would switch to a musician to sing a song about that person or place. Photographs could be flashed on a screen on the back of the stage. Then a new topic would follow. There would be a collection of different types of performers on the stage who would take turns. There would be a standard screen play that would feature a set of stories/songs, but that there would be flexibility for local input in each city/town in order to stress the local issues and people.

I am envisioning a collective of people who would get together and draft the screen play and a skeleton crew/performers that would actually travel from place to place. But, that much of the show would rely on local organization and performance. We would need to secure good venues and do a good job publicizing the event in order to target all types of people within our communities. Perhaps this could get on the road this summer?

Our movement must be proactive. After years of COINTELPRO and abuse from media and corporations, it is time we take back the public space and bring out the truth and debate about the assault on the environment. While people within the movement may disagree on tactics, we all agree on the fact that crimes against nature continue to happen and we must come together to share the passion we feel towards protecting these wild places and animals.

If you are interested in contributing to this idea or want to be a local organizer in your community, please contact Dragonfly at  muddyriver@riseup.net. Please also post your comments to the end of this piece so everyone can read them.
comment 21.Feb.2006 19:02

author

i think this would be a grand idea as long as it didnt make our current struggles seem like a romanticised past when the animals and foresrs we love are in more danger than ever under current regime.....maybe enact plays and stories and songs in threatened wild spaces so its not just another trendy party or use a bus that runs on veggie oil....

comment 21.Feb.2006 19:02

author

i think this would be a grand idea as long as it didnt make our current struggles seem like a romanticised past when the animals and foresrs we love are in more danger than ever under current regime.....maybe enact plays and stories and songs in threatened wild spaces so its not just another trendy party or use a bus that runs on veggie oil....