I’ve expressed concern about the casual way that Extinction Rebellion exposes its participants to police brutality and arrest.
Of the responses to that, by far the most disturbing were several people who claimed that it was okay because those arrested were ‘privileged’.
I wrote a thingy about that: https://queeranarchism.tumblr.com/post/184397236003/no-one-is-disposable
Let's say it again: at the bureaucracy level governments aren't ignorant about the likelihood of total climate collapse at all.
They've known for a while now. That's why they're militarizing borders and criminalizing aid to refugees. That's why they're trying to increase their control of their own population.
They're building fortresses in which to survive while most of the world dies.
So civil disobedience isn't going to change their mind. Their acceptable casualties run into the billions.
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It wasn't my goal to get my own ideas confirmed but that sounds 100% exactly like what I was thinking about XR.
ES needed a reality check from the very start. We needed it in our system that bureaucracy and hierarchy are no way to manage a movement. That talking on a Discord channel is not and never will be praxis. That just because you call a strike doesn't mean it'll happen.
But honestly, that would've never happened; a Reddit movement will have Reddit mentality. What can I say.
XR needs to get the fuck rid of the hierarchy (both practical and symbolic) in their movement. It needs to realize that its members are passionate, dedicated activists WHO AREN'T EXPENDABLE. They need to realize that the PR and sympathy they get by getting arrested does not even remotely compare to the immense harm of treating activists as disposable. They need to seriously rethink why they do things the way they do. They need to stop being press-oriented.
Activists should definitely avoid XR like the plague. Stay the hell away from any movement that doesn't respect you!!!
"Not everyone can fight, or risk getting arrested, consider accessibility in activism" is very true.
BUT not a good reason to choose reformist movements if you prefer to do revolutionary work.
There are many many accessible ways to be part of and support radical work.
Be on the legal team, hand out the coffee, give encryption workshops, organize fundraisers.
If you can never leave your house, stop doing pointless petitions and start writing to prisoners. Very important revolutionary work.
--This is not an Earth Strike endorsed message--
I largely endorse the sentiments here: https://twitter.com/EarthStrikeInt/status/1120196934516363264
I am sorely disappointed by the inaction and incompetence of #EarthStrike , and can no longer afford to compromise with milquetoast movements.
ENOUGH of this liberal reformism.
ENOUGH of this milquetoast "rebellion."
We're all going to die, literally, from heat stroke. Start acting like it.
Earth Strike is dead. XR is dead. But our solidarity isn't.
Fight like hell. But don't make my mistake, don't tolerate liberal movements, and DO NOT tolerate organizational hierarchy and bureaucracy.
Act locally. Join some friends. Help a collective like the #ELF. If there isn't one, start one. If you don't want to start one, fight anyway. If you don't know how to, read. Recipes for Disaster is a good start. It's far from perfect.
I'll try to be somewhat objective with this one.
Earth Strike has had a host of problems ever since it materialized. With identity and structure and operational planning, etc. But everyone felt optimistic and passionate enough to keep working to improve and redirect it.
We then went through numerous restructure proposals, until hPerk's CCC was implemented. But many thought that the culture of Earth Strike was already set in a way that could not divorce itself from corporate-like bureaucracy.
This bleeds into the core our operation as well. If you Earth Strike's demands, they really are quite liberal (not unlike XR and FFF). Beneath the leftist dogwhistling is a whole lot of doing nothing.
The Twitter hijack happened first, idk who did it.
But personally, Seeing what has recently happened to XR (an org that basically has the same problems as us except amplified to incredibly amounts, and with 10% of the self-awareness), I didn't want ES to burn out more activists
what's the point of 'discoverability'?
When ideas spread anonymously, each idea is weighed on its own without considering the authority of the writer, it is more difficult for 'influencers' to arise and it is more difficult for cops to identity key figures or hold anyone responsible for pieces of writing.
@clarjon1 portrait of me on days when I am selling my labor.
This being XR's main twitter account, it is precisely the impact on 'baby activists' that I'm worried about.
It would be really be great if our babies could learn their A-C-Bs before getting their name, face and fingerprints in a police file. That's not a nice way to start your activism life.
This isn't one naive baby either. XR is very social media aware. I doubt this would have stayed up if many organizers disagreed strongly with it.
I finished my several-day deep-dive into Extinction Rebellion and wrote a long-ish post on why I am staying far away from the movement: http://queeranarchism.tumblr.com/post/184255968508/you-wont-see-me-at-xr
Me: Even though I don't agree with their tactics, I should give this Extinction Rebellion a second look. They're really active and that's kind of...
XR twitter: "Most police are reasonable people."
Me: It's probably just one naive person, I'm sure people in the movement will correct this.
... 21 hours... no correction...
Me: ok, maybe no second look. Maybe I'm just staying so so far away from this.
@queeranarchism I agree the idea of real revolution and just throwing bodies in front of the establishment in protest to let them beat on and jail is a deeply flawed notion. The powers that be don't care that much, they always just wait for people to go away and continue on with business as usual.
I am a little stunned by how polite the second article is about asking Extinction Rebellion to please end the situation where two people have absolute power over the whole movement.
I would probably have worded that a bit more aggressively.
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