Archive for March, 2011

On Saturday March 12 we had the Southern Barton Heights Mobile Food Pantry. The Central VA Food Bank brought food to the neighborhood and the Wingnut and a few volunteers handed out food.

Of 175 vouchers given out, 123 were brought to the event and 51 people joined us without a voucher.

Those who attended represented 111 Seniors in our area, 297 children, and 290 adults.

In addition to distributing food at the Mobile Food Pantry, we have started to deliver food to those elders or disabled people in our area for whom coming out and carrying about three grocery bags packed full of food is too burdensome. We made 4 deliveries this month, and added two more deliveries to our schedule for April.

The total amount of those represented was 698 people.

Vouchers for the April food pantry were given to anyone who had already been delivered a voucher for March. Those without vouchers were added to the April delivery list; anyone within the delivery range will be given a voucher. Those who fall outside of it (again) will be contacted to pick one up after residents of Southern Barton Heights and the surrounding area receive theirs.

For information on how to start a Mobile Food Pantry in your area, contact Warren Hammonds (whammonds@feedmore.org) of the Central VA Food Bank. It’s very easy to start one! All you need are a location, volunteers to hand out the food, and a method for voucher distribution: here we deliver, but other groups distribute them via faith centers, community service and neighborhood associations, or other organizations.

To get a voucher for the Southern Barton Heights Mobile Food Pantry, just give us a call at (804) 303-5449 and we’ll put you on our voucher delivery list!

Don’t forget to bring some cash and dance moves tomorrow for this awesome event!

Pie and Blind Date Auction to Benefit RVA Anarchist Black Cross

Tomorrow at 10:00pm – Saturday at 1:00am
Sprout
1 North Morris St

Do you like pie, and wish that you had someone to eat a pie with?

Well here’s your chance! Come out to Sprout on April 1st to participate in a pie/blind date auction to benefit Anarchist Black Cross. We’ll be auctioning off homemade pies to the highest bidder, and the winner of each bid gets a date with whoever made the pie! Also, for a small donation, anyone will be able to throw a pie at a member of ABC.

All funds will be going towards prisoner support in their times of need.

For more information, or if you’d like to be one of the pie makers for the event, give us a call at 804-303-5449.

Or shoot us an email at rvaabc@gmail.com

The Richmond Defenders for Freedom, Justice, and Equality just released an announcement that they are holding their own ceremony in regards to the new historical markers along the Richmond Walk of Enslaved Africans. The Mayor, Governor, and others decided to postpone the originally scheduled event this Sunday in order to attend a VCU basketball game. This scheduling change is extremely problematic, considering the fact that VCU continues to park cars on the African Burial Ground despite full knowledge of the many reasons for that to be disrespectful at best.

If you can, please attend the ceremony on Sunday in support of the Defenders and others organizing against racism in Richmond. The statement from the Defenders is below:

PO Box 23202, Richmond, VA 23223  Ph: 804.644.5834  Fax: 804.332.5225
E-mail: DefendersFJE@hotmail.com www.DefendersFJE.org

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: March 31, 2011
MEDIA CONTACTS: ANA EDWARDS or PHIL WILAYTO at (804) 644-5834 or DefendersFJE@hotmail.com

Defenders pull out of City’s Slave Trail Commission ceremony; call for independent event on April 3

In light of the City’s inexcusable postponement of Sunday’s ceremony honoring sites associated with Richmond’s dominant role in the U.S. slave trade, the Defenders for Freedom, Justice & Equality have informed the city’s Slave Trail Commission that we will no longer be participating in this event. Instead, we are calling on the community to hold its own independent event on Sunday, at the time and place of the original program.

Originally scheduled for April 3 – Richmond’s Emancipation Day – the Slave Trail Commission’s ceremony was to celebrate the unveiling of 17 historical markers along Richmond’s Walk of Enslaved Africans. Ana Edwards, Chair of the Defenders’ Sacred Ground Historical Reclamation Project, had been invited by Commission Chair Delores McQuinn to unveil the marker at the African Burial Ground, at 15th and East Broad streets.

The Defenders had initially accepted the invitation because we thought it important to acknowledge the placement of these markers as a good step forward in making Richmond’s Black history visible, and to again demand the immediate closing of the Virginia Commonwealth University parking lot and removal of the asphalt that now covers this sacred site.

However, the Commission rescheduled the event for April 10 after Richmond Mayor Dwight C. Jones and Virginia Gov. Robert McDonnell decided that, instead of honoring their commitment to speak at Sunday’s ceremony, they would instead travel to Houston, Texas, to watch the VCU Rams compete in the Final Four NCAA basketball game.

After nearly 10 years of struggle by the Defenders and many other community organizations and individuals, a bill introduced by Delegate McQuinn to authorize the transfer of the Burial Ground property to the City was unanimously adopted by this year’s General Assembly. Further, a budget amendment introduced by the governor authorizing $3.3.million to compensate VCU for the transfer also passed. And yet, the university – the area’s dominant economic and political powerhouse – continues to use the Burial Ground for a parking lot.

The VCU connection in the decision to postpone Sunday’s unveiling ceremony simply adds insult to this historical and cultural injury, said Edwards. (more…)

Here at the Wingnut, our privacy fence is less for privacy, and more for keeping Grits and Flapjack in the yard. With that in mind, we decided to add a purpose to the blank slate fence we had. We have now made the fence available as a graffiti practice wall of sorts. Anyone is welcome to come practice some art on the fence. When it gets covered up, we suggest that folks just keep on painting, covering it up as they please.

If anyone wants to do workshops for local kids, to teach them techniques from spray painting to stencilling, please let us know! Also, if anyone has any paints or spray paints or brushes etc. they could donate that would also rock! You would be surprised at how fast an 8 year old can go through a can of spray paint.

Graffiti is a means of artistic and political expression for individuals in a world where almost all public expression comes from corporations and governments. We believe that the very act of creating a public statement or art piece can be empowering, and that empowerment in itself is important and valuable.
We are also into the concept of graffiti and street art in general as an anti-gentrification tool. The presence of graffiti in an area can act as a deterrent to an influx of wealthier individuals who can be part of the gentrification process.
We are conscious of the fact that some of our neighbors care about the property value of their house. But we also have many neighbors who struggle with their yearly property tax bills, and many many more who rent their apartments and houses, and therefore will benefit if their rent stays the same or cheaper. Unfortunately, the absurd functioning of the capitalist real estate market is such that increasing property values ends up forcing out many low income people in a community. And in Richmond we do not have fixed rent, so gentrification is a really serious problem for many people.
Fighting gentrification is certainly a complex and not fully understood process. And we are not dismissive of the gentrifying potential of the white skin of many who live at the Wingnut. We hope that being committed members of our community, along with strategies such as our mural and our graffiti fence, might be parts of an overall strategy of resistance to gentrification in Southern Barton Heights. Its something we are pretty much constantly thinking about, experimenting with, and working on.

Here are some pictures of what the fence looks like now- keeping in mind that it is ever changing:

Apparently there are some VCU Basketball fans in the neighborhood : )


If anything, its colorful

Nothing brings down property values like graffiti...


P.S. anyone want to help us build a better gate?


(more…)

The Wingnut went to the 1st annual Charlottesville Anarchist Bookfair on Saturday March 19th at Random Row Books. We had a really great time. It was nice to see so many folks from Virginia and the East Coast. The weather was great too. Thanks so much to all the organizers for the hard work that went into this event. We look forward to it next year!

Jeremy hanging out


Awesome banner the organizers made!


Cameron setting up the FNB table


Kenny with the IWW and David with FNB!


(more…)

Fast Heart Mart, The Good Ship S.S. Perry, and Cole Sullivan will be playing a free show here at the Wingnut on Wednesday March 30th at 7pm!

Troubadours from Albuquerque playing offbeat folk, strummin’ and a-struttin’ and a-backing each other up. Songs about the desert, bears, love and its approximations, and foosball. Hear us, love us, help push our van out of the parking lot. Invite yer friends.

Bring lots of friends and snacks! And feel free to come by early for open hours, starting at 4pm!

As always, this is a sober event, so please no drinking or drugs.

What to Expect When You Are Expecting… To Be Arrested

Richmond Legal Process Guideline for Anarchists and Others

This is an outline for some important things to keep in mind when embarking on any enterprise which may lead to police detainment or arrest. This guideline is specifically aimed at folks who might be at risk for arrest due to the political nature of their activities – from protests to civil disobedience to other forms of direct action. Even when it is no one’s intention to be arrested, the police state will do what it do. Preparing ahead of time, mentally and logistically can make both those incarcerated and their support network a lot less stressed out.

This guideline is a work in progress and we encourage any suggestions or additions – let us know at wingnut_collective@yahoo.com

Before the event/action/whateverweliveinapolicestateforgoodnessake

Know Your Rights Training (Richmond Copwatch offers this training for free!)

Security Culture Training (Wingnut Anarchist Collective offers this training for free!)

Group discussion with participants if possible- to discuss goals of event, response to police, etc. ie. if its civil disobedience then maybe a goal is for people to be arrested. But if you are not trying to get arrested what is the plan? Where should people meet up? etc.

Collect the following from participants: contact info, legal names, emergency info, medical info (do they need meds?), job info (do they want you to call their boss?), pets info (does someone need to feed their fish?), etc. BEFORE the arrest if at all possible. (more…)

The event organizing guide is meant to be a sort of outline or checklist to help folks not forget important parts of organinzing events or meetings or what-have-you. If you have suggestions or additions to this guide please let us know at wingnut_collective@yahoo.com

This is in no way complete or meant to be set in stone, it just reflects some aspects of organizing that we think could use a more clear process so we don’t overlook the things we know better than to overlook. Meetings frequently run long and we tend to get excited about ideas and end up hammering out the details outside of the largr meetings. A guide of sorts might help folks understand more clearly what parts of an event could/should be organized together ahead of time. Hopefully as everyone develops their communication and organizing skills we can have more positive community radical and anarchist events that aren’t super stressful to organize or attend.

There will be a specific outline of processes to consider when dealing with detention or arrest of people in Richmond which will go on this website in the near future.

Initial Planning

What is the event?

When will it be? (Time, date) (taking into account weather and darkness)

Where will it be? (public, private, permit, no permit, venue, rules)

Who do you want to attend? (participants, audience)

Goals of the event: (Its good for organizers to assert what they want out of the event, that way folks can be on the same page as much as possibe. Ie- fundraising, awareness, empowerment etc.)

Promotion of Event (more…)

In an effort to help activists and anarchists in the Richmond area from having to rebuild the wheel, the Wingnut Anarchist Collective is posting this Press Contact list. Hopefully this list will be helpful whenever groups need to send out press releases or contact reporters when an event is occuring.

If you have additions to this list please send them to us at wingnut_collective@yahoo.com and we will gladly keep this list up to date as a resource for our community.

We have categorized these contacts by media type. We also recommend that people program in the phone numbers to their phones so that the media can be contacted quickly when unexpected events occur.

We will be adding the snail mail addresses for these contacts in the near future.

TV:

Channel 6 – newstips@wtvr.com  Call (804)254-3684 – 24 hours a day

Channel 8 – news@wric.com   (804) 330-8814

Channel 12 – (804) 345-1212    onyourside@nbc12.com newsroom@nbc12.com

Print:

Richmond Magazine – nancyn@richmag.com

Chris Dovi – dovidovidovi@gmail.com

The Richmond Defender – defendersfje@hotmail.com (804) 644-5834

Richmond Free Press – news@richmondfreepress.com  (804) 644-0496 (more…)

We have gotten a bunch of awesome new books in the past 2 weeks for the Wingnut Radical Lending Library. Some we picked up at the Monroe Park Occupation, some at Charlottesville Anarchist Bookfair, and some we got through being friends of PM Press.We are missing some of the books from Charlottesville- at Food Not Bombs in Monroe Park last Sunday someone picked up the wrong Milk Crate. If you know where those 7 books are please let us know, we were really excited to share them.

Come by during Open Hours to browse and check out books. Wednesdays and Fridays from 4-9pm. If you are interested in helping facilitate Open Hours or participating in any of the projects that come out of the Wingnut Anarchist Collective please get in touch!

Our entire collection is available for search online at http://www.librarything.com/thewingnutrva

 

The Paul Goodman Reader by Paul Goodman

Capital and Its Discontents: Conversations with Radical Thinkers in a Time of Tu… by Sasha Lilley

Lucasville: The Untold Story of a Prison Uprising by Staughton Lynd

Ensenando rebeldia: Historias de la lucha popular oaxaquena (Spanish Edition) by Diana Denham

Moments of Excess: Movements, Protest and Everyday Life by The Free Association

TVA Baby (Spectacular Fiction) by Terry Bisson

Soccer vs. the State: Tackling Football and Radical Politics by Gabriel Kuhn

(more…)