Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: anarchism, anti-police brutality rally, ☭☭☭, ⚑, columbia, every heart is a revolutionary cell, hakim bey, insurrection, new school, nyu, occupy everything, peter lambourne wilson, pigs, police brutality, take back the night
Off the sidewalks, into the future! Swoooosh I guess we’re rupturing the spacetimecontinuum vortex now? As per usual an anti-police brutality rally was met with, surprise, more “police brutality”. Even with this it’s worth thinking about what “police brutality” looks like – or doesn’t look like at a majority white, privileged space like the New School. NYPD has a community affairs unit, who knew? It’s starting to feel like an insurrectionary circuit is being traced from union square via new school to washington square park and back. How do we abolish exchange? Perhaps our vegan potlucks in the park should become mutualist potlatches. Maybe we should start eating the pigs? Rev Billy showed up to preach but I guess we weren’t all buying what he was selling. Has even anti-commercialism been commodified? And how does his hair defy gravity so bouffantly? I want to know.
A few hours later was Columbia’s annual Take Back the Night. Much as I love and respect many of the women organising it, this year it left me feeling insipid and disempowered. It wasn’t just the small turnout, or the awkward women in front men in the back gender binary, dissected with striped poles (though I understand the sentiment of a female-identified space). But the righteous batoned police escort and the sanctioned, rehearsed performative feel of it. And some banners, and the cheering on frat row – a show of support, right? – feeling instead like dog biscuits being thrown from above. Coming from being shoved to the ground a few hours earlier, where’s the comfort in being surrounded by pigs? Does an escort really create a safe space for survivors? Why should our streets only be safe when blockaded, not with our bodies but with New York’s finest? I later got an email from a good friend involved in its organising:
I agree with you that in many ways, it feels weird to have the police effectively following up through the route, and a a few policecars at each intersection. There’s something very strange about having flyers that report the gross percentage of abuse by correctional authorities — which presumably include members of the police, at some level — and then seemingly marching with these same people, or ‘allowing’ them to ‘protect’ us. In reality-as-i see-it, the police block off traffic. If/when they do more, we as members of the march need to address how and this is happening, and how to stop it.
We’d talked of an anarch@-feminist black bloc of it (but didn’t), perhaps along the lines of APOC’s ‘smack a white boy‘ at the recent ANSWER march in DC. Yet the speakout left me feeling, as always numb. People are talking about doing similar at NYU’s TBTN – I don’t know how I feel about the politics/vibes of this anymore?
The future tells us to kill the Hegel in your head. Perhaps we should cut it off instead? Hakim Bey-ji spoke earlier in the day, with an interesting green anarchic-bent – seemingly because he avoids tv, internet etc and gets his news only through the (green) anarchist press. He’s working through ‘temporal pastoralist zones’ now – I’d have to read it but it seems awfully secessionary-because- we’re-first-world-and-privileged-enough-to-do-so. Maybe that’s unfair -more on it later, when I can collect (forage for?) my thoughts.
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