Monthly Archives: March 2012

Occupy by the occupiers part 2

We feature these two articles written by a participant of occupy who was newly radicalized, and an observer of occupy who did interviews with occupy Miami members. MAS doesn’t endorse these articles, but offers them as an insight to the moment of occupy in South Florida.

Continue reading

Occupy by the occupiers part 1

We feature these two articles written by a participant of occupy who was newly radicalized, and an observer of occupy who did interviews with occupy Miami members. MAS doesn’t endorse these articles, but offers them as an insight to the moment of occupy in South Florida. Continue reading

March called in Sanford Florida for Trayvon Martin Saturday 8am-2pm

There has been a march called by the Rainbow-Push coalition in Sanford Florida. Transportation is being arranged from Miami for those who are able to go. More information is here with the event organizers.

Justice for Trayvon Martin Now!

As winter turns into spring, things are heating up in Miami. The murder of Trayvon Martin, a Miami Gardens native, by a neighborhood watch vigilante in Sanford, Florida has brought systemic racism into the eyes of every American. While the details and responses are still unfolding, Miami is taking to the streets to stand against the injustice that pervades society and penetrates communities. Thursday, hundreds of students in Carol City walked out and flooded the streets in Solidarity with Trayvon. In New York and other cities, hundreds participated in a “Million hoodie march” for Trayvon. Students at FA&M, FAU, Barry, FIU, and others are coordinating more actions as we write this. Right now is a time to coordinate and publicize these autonomous actions widely, and take action.

Offering a premature analysis would not be helpful, and instead we want to offer some resources for people in understanding this senseless killing. The situation is made worse by the fact that it was simply a community member and not the police who murdered an innocent black youth. This shows how deep the interwoven system of racial oppression and class exploitation penetrate not merely our communities but also the thoughts of Americans. The radio program Against the Grain did an episode on the rise of the racist prison complex, and the role of the punitive state in our lives. Miami’s PowerU did a recent video on the school to jails pipeline. It’s worth restating that Trayvon was no criminal, and his murderer was not paid by the state to kill. When people willing murder their as vigilantes, it raises deeper questions around the racism and state that penetrates society and our lives. We need to reflect and organize against a society that criminalizes and encourages attacks on oppressed and exploited people.

Interviews with organizers: Canada’s postal struggles & the New School occupation

Beginning with the crisis of 2008, a series of community, labor, and education struggles have unfolded across the world, in the US, and Canada. As experienced organizers face new challenges, and new people are brought into the movement, the challenges and problems posed by building powerful radical movements confronts us.

Today we present two interviews with organizers that helped build struggles against problems they faced in the crisis, and reflect on those experiences and lessons for radicals in these movements.

First, we share an interview with Phinneas a Canadian postal worker. Last year, a series of direct actions exploded across Canada in response to attempts to rationalize and mechanize production, and around the labor contract in negotiation. You can read more about these struggles on the blog Recomposition, which features articles by a number of postal workers across canada. Phinneas’ article Waves of Struggle, is his account of the actions and problems they faced.

Next, we share an interview with Marianne a student organizer active in Occupy and the New School occupation that happened during the most active period in Occupy Wall Street. As more people were brought into that movement, students across the city began to bring the struggle back to their universities, culminating in the spontaneous occupation of a building in the New School last year. Marianne reflects on the successes and shortcomings of that process, and makes suggestions for how we can move forward in the future.

For different perspectives, you can read two additional accounts of the occupation, though MAS & recomposition doesn’t endorse them, here and here.

10 Ways to #BuildPower for #M1GS

by Occupy May 1st

From: https://www.facebook.com/notes/occupy-may-first/10-ways-to-buildpower-for-m1gs/164740520313106

With the American Spring just starting, us folks at #BuildPowerShowPower thought it would be good to wrap up some of the ideas going around on how to help #BuildPower for #M1GS!

[1] Work Within Occupy: There are hundreds of Occupy groups still holding regular meetings and events. Chances are, there’s one nearby. (And if there isn’t yet – it’s easy to start one!) General Assemblies are open to everyone, and everyone has a voice in the consensus planning process. So find your nearest Occupation and go to a GA! If they haven’t already endorsed the General Strike, propose it to the group and start planning marches, distributing fliers, and forming direct action groups. If you have any networks in other cities, try to talk to them about doing the same and getting them involved!

[2] Spread On Social Media: Follow #M1GS, @OWSMayDay, @OccupyM1, and @OccupyGenStrike on Twitter. Also be sure to RSVP on Facebook and follow facebook.com/OccupyGeneralStrike & facebook.com/OccupyMayFirst. You can also look for city-specific events! Try to get these pages posted on as many online sites and locations as possible, whether it is your organization, occupy groups, sympathetic blogs. Make sure to invite all your friends, retweet and share announcements coming from #M1GS

[3] Start Affinity Groups: You can take action on your own. All you need are a few friends. Affinity groups are groups of people who know each other and come together autonomously for a particular action. Find a few people who are interested in helping you out on a project you have in mind – whether it’s making fliers and literature to distribute, or shutting down a Wall Street bank in your hometown. You could start a boycott, or occupy a bank, school, or a public space. Get creative!

[4] Start Strike Committees: The bulk of organizing for #M1GS needs to happen in local communities.  Some cities have built May 1st general strike commitees outside their occupy movements; some cities are working through exisiting May Day coalitions and groups; some cities established/ or are working through an existing commitee of their local Occupy movement.  But a local, public group not limited to any one political group or tendency is a general concept that has taken on different forms in different cities. Start your neighborhood strike committee today!

[5] Talk to Labor: Due to federal laws, most unions are forbidden from organizing strikes for political reasons. However, unions and labor groups are still some of our strongest allies. During last year’s General Strike in Oakland, many unions encouraged their workers to take the day off or attend demonstrations after work. Not long after Occupy Oakland shut down ports in solidarity with striking Longshoreman, their employers caved to the union’s demands in a new contract. Get in touch with local unions and labor organizations, let them know about the plans for a General Strike, find out what they’re working on and how you can help, and encourage them to let their members know about May 1st and get involved in organizing directly.

[6] Outreach to Community Organizations:  The more folks that we can work together with the better.  It’s likely to take on different forms in different cities.  Where unions don’t endorse reach out to sympathetic community organizations and other neighborhood instutions like small businesses who might close shop to let their employees off for the day. This way we don’t lose momentum if some organizations don’t want to get on board. This way we can #BuildPower!

[7] Organize Your Workplace, Campus, or Community: If you’re a unionized worker, encourage your union to support the General Strike. Whether your workplace is union or not, you can encourage co-workers to take a sick day on May 1st. If you can’t afford to lose out on pay, that’s okay – there will be plenty of celebrations, marches, and direct actions throughout all hours of the day. Invite your community to attend. If you’re a student at a high school or college, spread the word to walk-out of class on May 1st. If you’re not a worker or student, organize your friends! Organize strike councils in your workplace! Organize strike councils in your schools! Organize strike councils in your community!

[8] Mass Canvassing:  Depending on your Occupy or Strike Committee’s capacity compared to population size, you might want to divide up the city by neighborhood and go door to door.  Folks with smaller Occupies and Strike Commitees compared to popuplation size might want to find locations with heavy foot traffic of a broad-swath of the 99%.  For anyone who hasn’t done mass canvassing before, it’s good to develop a standard, short “pitch” to get a conversation started, even if you don’t use it/ or don’t use the exact phrasing every time.  The pitch shouldn’t be too long but should provide the basic information of what your trying to talk about and draw someone into conversation so that you can dialogue.  It’s also good to have literature for people to have, but it’s generally more effective to hand out literature after you’ve had a conversation than just to randomly hand out literature if possible.

[9] Creation of Agitational Literature & Propaganda: Each Occupy has made it’s own call. #BuildPowerShowPower and #StrikeEverywhere have made calls for the General Strike! Get your group to endorse or make a call for the General Strike. We need a lot of people to write agitational pieces on #M1GS to distribute locally and share with others to distribute in other cities. We need graphic artists to work on stickers, posters, videos, graphics for online distribution that can agitate around #M1GS. OccuPrint collects, prints, and distributes posters from the worldwide Occupy movement, and they have a ton of amazing General Strike posters! Call2Create has also headed this call! The more the merrier and the more we can try share each others stuff and create a variety of stuff the better.

[10] Join the General Strike Movement: InterOccupy hosts regular calls to organize May 1st activities. Check out their schedule and join in the conversation. Below are links to cities and others that has endorsed the General Strike, if there are any missing please help us by commenting so we can all link up and get involved!

Occupy May 1st Links:

Occupy Los Angeles 19 December, 2011, http://www.occupymay1st.org/2012/01/04/occupy-los-angeles-general-strike-meeting-2/

Occupy Boston, 7 January 2012, http://www.occupyboston.org/2012/01/08/ob-endorses-call-general-strike/

Occupy Tampa, 7 January 2012, http://www.occupytampa.org/general-assembly/ga-minutes-1072012/

Occupy Pasadena, 8 January 2012, http://www.occupypasadena.org/2012/01/

Occupy Phoenix, 8 January 2012, http://occupyphx.org/assemblies/ga/proposals-for-ga-11012/

Occupy Williamsburg, 17 January 2012, http://magicmuscle.wordpress.com/2012/01/23/occupy-williamsburg-banner-drop-quotes-drake-calls-for-general-strike/

Occupy Long Beach, 17 January 2012, http://occupylb.org/2012/01/17/ga-notes-january-17th-2012/

Occupy Oakland, 29 January 2012, http://occupyoakland.org/2012/01/occupy-oakland-decides-to-participate-in-the-global-general-strike-on-may-day/

Occupy Ventura, 7 February 2012, http://occupyventura805.wordpress.com/2012/02/08/minutes-from-occupy-805-ga-february-7-2012/

Occupy Portland, OR, 10 February 2012, http://www.portlandgeneralassembly.org/2012/02/a-day-without-the-99-on-may-day/

Occupy Wall Street, 14 February 2012, http://www.nycga.net/2012/02/13/proposal-in-support-of-may-day-2012/

Occupy Sydney, 18 February 2012, http://www.occupysydney.org.au/2012/03/05/occupy_sydney_general_strike_may_1st/

Occupy Detroit, 21 February 2012, http://www.occupy-detroit.us/2012/02/24/minutes-of-the-41st-occupy-detroit-general-assembly-february-21-2012/

Other May 1st 2012 Related Links:

Strike Everywhere Facebook Event: http://www.facebook.com/events/307864259256522/

Phoenix May Day Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/phoenixmayday

Detroit General Strike: http://www.generalstrikedetroit.info/

http://generalstrikedetroit.tumblr.com/

http://www.facebook.com/events/133920430061332/

Canada: http://www.facebook.com/events/388009564557975/

Occupation Coordination http://www.occupymay1st.org/groups/occupation-coordination/

Occupy Los Angeles General Strike Committee General, Occupy May 1st: http://www.occupymay1st.org/groups/occupy-los-angeles-general-strike-committee-general/

Occupy May Day – General Strike Facebook Event: http://www.facebook.com/events/337068492974144/

Occupy Call 2 Create: http://www.call2create.org/

May Day 2012 Facebook Event: http://www.facebook.com/events/327486667289414/

May Day, General Strike 2012 Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/MayDay.GeneralStrike.2012

Stand with Homestead Against Racial Profiling!

Miami Autonomy and Solidarity is passing along this request for solidarity from a WeCount! organizer to stand with Homestead residents as they express their outrage at the persistent racial profiling by Miami-Dade Police of Homestead residents:

In December, WeCount! delivered petitions with over 2,300 signatures to the Miami-Dade Police Department, calling on the MDPD to stop racially profiling Latino (with indigenous features) drivers. Subsequently, Major Ariel Artime, of the South District of the MDPD has accepted our invitation to come to Homestead to dialogue with members of our community on this important issue.

Please join us on Friday, March 16, at 6:30 pm, at the First Homestead United Methodist Church, 622 N. Krome Ave. in Homestead. The dialogue will be held in Spanish, with translation into English.

WeCount! hopes to count on your presence and support this Friday for our much awaited forum with the Miami Dade County Police. Please make an effort to attend.