I found this on a flyer in my neighborhood.
On may 19th, three people associated with the Occupy movement were arrested in Chicago, just before the anti-NATO protest. Two infiltrators had been working with them for months, trying to persuade them to escalate their tactics – just as in the recent Cleveland bomb scare. Whether the infiltrators would have succeeded in pushing them further than they wanted to go, we’ll never know. Desperate to make an arrest that would intimidate the NATO protesters, divide the Occupy movement from its most radical members, and create an impressive spectacle, the police attacked. Their most substantial evidence is beer-making supplies at the house the NATO 3 were arrested in, which they ridiculously claim are bomb materials.
While we are confident that the NATO 3 will beat these ludicrous charges, they are being held in solitary confinement on 1.5 million dollars bond each. It often comforts prisoners to know that people on the outside love them and are thinking about them, so a solidarity demonstration was called for May 24th, in St Louis, MO. It was noissy, vibrant, nighttime march, enjoyed by the people it passed. “Solidarity with all who resist!” was painted on a business window, and, of course, a businessman got angry, and, of course, there was an altercation; the cops showed up, hit people, were allegedly hit in return, and so on. By the end of the night, ten people were in jail – one charged with five felony counts of assault, property damage and riot, as well as two misdemeanors. Others are charged with felony resisting, interference, and misdemeanor riot. Upon their release, we learned that while being interrogated one prisoner had a knife held to their throat, that they were choked and lifted off the ground and punched in the chest for non-compliance. One comrade, who is facing the most serious charges, was brought to the interrogation room where a detective repeatedly struck him in the face, breaking his nose while he was shackled to the floor. They continued to make threats of violence if he continued to “not comply.”
As a wise woman once said, “If you hit me and I hit back, we still ain’t even.” There is no way in society as it exists today to have a fair fight with the police; they have vast, systemic power, and will always be better equipped and better financed than we are. Nor can we let them hurt anyone, particularly those close to us, with complete impunity, without a response from us. We must fight, but we must fight asymmetrically. If we must respond, we are forced into reaction instead of attack, let it be waves of reaction – if strange and inadequate, funny and off putting – that build off each other to create an ocean of solidarity. Solidarity actions in response to the repression of solidarity actions with people we’ve never met accused of crimes that never occurred – this is utterly bizarre, but this is our life.
You should care about this. You should care that the government is making tactical strikes against its enemies. Maybe you don’t think of yourself as an enemy of the government or capitalism; maybe you would never consider it publicly, in a quiet, accepted way or otherwise. Still, think about your life: do you feel safer, happier, more fulfilled because of your job, the police, the taxes you pay? Even if you feel those things on a surface level, do you feel like something is missing, that you could be living in a way that is more glorious and beautiful? Do you see people around you who suffer, or read books about terrible things in America’s past, or hear of people in far-off lands whose lives seem impossibly hard, and wish that you could do something about it – something more meaningful than giving to a charity or voting in the election? We suggest a first step:
Show solidarity to all who resist.