Statement against violent arrests and absurd charges against participants in New Year's Eve noise demonstration
On New Year's Eve, our community gathered for a noise demonstration in downtown Minneapolis in support of prison abolition and in solidarity with incarcerated folks. Officers swarmed the scene, abruptly making violent arrests without dispersal orders. It is an abuse of power to disperse a protest without issuing such an order. Instead of ticketing or releasing folks - which is the norm - our friends and relatives were held over the holiday weekend under probable cause charges, which historically has been used by police to give extra time to justify otherwise unlawful arrests that violate everyone’s first amendment rights to protest.
Conversations during and after the Uprising led to people forming up a Whittier copwatch. In that copwatch, connections were made which helped workers get in touch with union organizers and tenants to revive tenant organizing committees and more.
What are some counterinsurgency tactics you've noticed this summer? What things you have seen people—especially people with clear connections to the existing power structure—do that have led to the demobilization, suppression, discrediting, intimidation, or marginalization of the movement for black lives and against police brutality? Learning and recognizing these tactics is crucial. Here are some that people named in one big thread.
As the summer born in flames nears its end in Minneapolis, the counterinsurgency playbook plays out much as expected. As symbolic concessions are granted all over, the material reality of racist police violence driven by propertied interests continues.
As discussions of police abolition and how other models of justice could work move forward and gain a mainstream audience, it is important to reiterate that "transformative justice" does not mean centering the harm-doer and their process of redemption.
Please be very suspicious of today’s police strategic leak around the investigation of “Umbrella man” who broke windows at the E. Lake St Autozone during the Minneapolis Uprising.
Ever since the Minneapolis Uprising, different police brutality groups have been grappling with how to deal with the mass popularity of the “Abolish the Police” demand - and the shocking maneuver of the City Council to at least pay lip service to this demand.
On this date in 1934 the Minneapolis Police opened fire on strikers in the warehouse district, shooting 67 picketers and killing two men – a Teamster and an unemployed supporter.
I'm seeing some commentary about militant actions that warns that the Nazis rose to power by citing the burning of the Reichstag, or even set the Reichstag on fire themselves- and so violence at protests is either being done by or unwillingly playing into the hands of fascists.
This is, frankly, horseshit.
The Nazi Party was already in power when the Reichstag Fire happened, and the biggest block in their rise to power had always been the militant antifascists- a fact which the Nazis themselves recognized, with Hitler admitting that if antifascists had smashed their movement from the beginning, it would have been the only way to stop them.
The movement by auto workers not to make cop cars, tech workers not to make surveillance equipment for repression, furniture workers not to supply ICE, GE workers to build respirators, and so on is a promising sign that the new labor militancy is not only around wages or benefits, but about workers reclaiming some degree of ownership over our work and a say in what we produce.
Here in Minneapolis, we are in the first "trough" of the wave of the uprising. MAJOR concessions have been granted by institutions cutting ties with the MPD and the City Council (including members who have been consistently obstructionist to the movement against policing) announcing a plan for abolishing the MPD.