Archive for September, 2011

Join Richmond Copwatch at the 2011 Richmond Zine Fest on October 8th from 11 to 6 at the Gay Community Center of Richmond at 1407 Sherwood Avenue.

4pm- Know Your Rights Workshop with Richmond Copwatch
This workshop will help participants learn the basics of asserting their rights when dealing with the police. We highly recommend this workshop for EVERYONE. But especially anyone who engages in any level of political protest or demonstrations.This workshop consists of skits that are performed by Copwatch members and then edited by participants from the audience. We encourage participation, questions, and dialogue around the topics covered in the skit. We are not lawyers, but we are able to provide useful information about a lot of legal questions.

For more information about this workshop or Richmond Copwatch you can call 804 303 5449 or email sbhcopwatch@gmail.com
Richmond Copwatch is a non-hierarchical organization dedicated to ending police abuse. We believe that monitoring and recording police interactions with community members is a vital first step towards ensuring accountability and protecting ourselves and our communities. We are committed to anti-authoritarian principles and seek to transform the nature of the police and explore alternative methods of community conflict resolution.

Join the Richmond Anarchist Black Cross at the 2011 Richmond Zine Fest on October 8th from 11pm to 6pm at the Gay Community Center of Richmond at 1407 Sherwood Avenue.

We will be hosting a workshop at 2pm- The Green Scare with the Richmond Anarchist Black Cross
This workshop will be a discussion of what the Green Scare is (think Red Scare), how it affects activists today, and what can be done to fight it. There will be a lot of intro level material, but folks with more knowledge are encouraged to come share their thoughts and ideas.

The Richmond Anarchist Black Cross is a prison abolition and political prisoner support organization. The RVA ABC is non-hierarchical and works both locally and nationally to support prisoners and fight the prison industrial complex. The RVA ABC has been working in Richmond for over 3 years.

On September 10th the Central Virginia Food Bank showed up in Southern Barton Heights with enough food to provide for 200 households in our community. Here is how it went:

Of the 200 vouchers handed out, 125 were handed in for food. In all, those with vouchers represented 239 adults, 152 children, and 58 seniors; accounting for 449 people total.

We are looking for more community involvement with this program, so anyone who wants to help organize, deal with vouchers, distribute the food day of etc. should get in touch.

The October Mobile Food Pantry will be on Saturday October 8th at 1pm. Many of the Wingnuts will be at the Richmond Zine Fest, so extra help would be lovely.

(804) 303 5449

The Wingnut Anarchist Collective will be screening the film Homotopia on Sunday October 23rd at 7pm.

This movie is directed by some of the same people making the presentation on October 19th at the University of Richmond on Captive Genders: Trans Embodiment and the Prison Industrial Complex. We hope to continue ideas and conversations from that event during discussion after the movie screening. We also think the recent repeal of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell makes this movie particularly relevant for discussion by queers and queer allies.

Set sometime in the future-present Homotopia chronicles a group of radical queer’s dedicated to exposing the trouble with gay marriage, dismantling the State, undoing Empire, while looking totally fierce. Woven into the story of Yoshi’s adventures in love, resistance, and sex, is a critique of the crushing violence of homonormativity and its deadly perpetuation of US patriotism, conservative kinship structures and affective accumulation. Homotopia holds cinematic assumptions hostage through its motley assemblage of never-passing crew. Race, gender, ability and desire are reworked through an anti-colonial take of queer struggle creating a visual rhythm of melancholic utopianism that knows there may be no future but still hopes today is not their last. Love revolution, not State delusion, Homotopia.

Richmond Copwatch is holding its first ever fundraiser next Saturday October 1st.Please come out so we can raise funds to buy new cameras and other necessary equipment.

It will be a Smash-a-que – which means we will be asking for donations for people to take swings at a “Richmond Cop Car Number 187″. We will provide safety goggles and gloves, and a sledgehammer with which to take swings at the cop car. We are asking for a 5 dollar donation per swing, with a larger donation for parts of the car like the windshield.

We will be holding the Smash-A-Que at the corner of West Graham and North Avenue, next door to  the Goal Post and across the street from the North Avenue Market.  We will start at 5pm, and keep going until that car is crushed.

Food will be sold next door at the Goal Post Restaurant during our event. We encourage people to support a local business and buy some food from Ms. Dot.

We will also be projecting the film These Streets Are Watching, which is about Copwatch organizations across the country. We will have a table with literature about Copwatch in Richmond and how to get involved.

The Richmond Anarchist Black Cross wants to update people to the ongoing situation in the California Prison System. As much publicity, support, and solidarity as these prisoners can get the better. These prisoners are bravely fighting inhumane and tortuous prison conditions, including the use of Security Housing Units (SHUs).
Here is an update from the Prison Hunger Strike Solidarity group:

On Monday, September 26th, prisoners at both Pelican Bay & Calipatria will resume the hunger strike to stop the torturous conditions of Security Housing Units (SHUs).

Prisoners first went on hunger strike on July 1st for nearly four weeks, until the California Department of Corrections & Rehabilitation (CDCR) agreed to begin implementing some of the prisoners’ five core demands. The strike became one of the largest prison strikes in California history–stretching across a third of the California’s prisons (at least 13 State prisons), including more than 6,600 prisoners at its height. However, the CDCR’s response has been inadequate to say the least, giving prisoners & their families false hope of timely substantial change and an end to torture. For a detailed summary of the CDCR’s response to the strike, and why Pelican Bay prisoners are resuming it, read “Tortured SHU Prisoners Speak Out: The Struggle Continues.” (more…)

Members of the Wingnut Anarchist Collective and Richmond Anarchist Black Cross will be going to this presentation at the University of Richmond on October 19th. If you would like a ride to this event please come by the Wingnut around 6:15 that evening. We are super excited that this event will be in Richmond and hope that a lot of folks can make it out to increase our community dialogue around prison and queer issues.

Captive Genders:

Trans Embodiment and the Prison Industrial Complex

Book reading and panel discussion

Wednesday, October 19, 2011 · 7:00pm – 9:00pm

Keller Hall Reception Room at the University of Richmond

Pathologized, terrorized, and confined, trans/gender non-conforming and queer folks have always struggled against the enormity of the prison industrial complex. The first collection of its kind, Eric A. Stanley and Nat Smith bring together current and former prisoners, activists, and academics to offer new ways for understanding how race, gender, ability, and sexuality are lived under the crushing weight of captivity. Through a politic of gender self-determination, this collection argues that trans/queer liberation and prison abolition must be grown together. From rioting against police violence and critiquing hate crimes legislation to prisoners demanding access to HIV medications, and far beyond, Captive Genders is a challenge for us all to join the struggle.

with:

Eric A. Stanley works at the intersections of radical trans/queer politics, theories of state violence, and visual culture. Eric edited Captive Genders: Trans Embodiment and the Prison Industrial Complex  (AK Press, 2011) and along with Chris Vargas, directed the films Homotopia (2006) and Criminal Queers (2011).

Ralowe T. Ampu: the seductive fragrance wafting through milieus of unbridled danger and intrigue. Yes, whether it be outing gay Castro realtors as AIDS profiteers with ACT UP and GAY SHAME or trying to free the New Jersey 4, or prevent the non-profit management company in her SRO from killing her neighbors, Ralowe is there.

Toshio Meronek is on the editorial collective for The Abolitionist, Critical Resistance’s newspaper and runs whereslulu.com, a website on disability and popular culture.

www.captivegenders.com

Yesterday we held a demonstration and vigil in downtown Richmond for Troy Anthony Davis. He was scheduled to be executed at 7pm last night in Georgia. There was an inspiring turn out of supporters for the demonstration and vigil, with local groups such as the Anarchist Black Cross, Defenders of Freedom Justice and Equality, Virginians for Alternatives to the Death Penalty, and Amnesty International. There were students from local community colleges, VCU, and UofR.

In Monroe Park ,while we were holding an 8 minute silent vigil, we received word that the execution had been postponed. Clapping went up in our crowd of 40-50 people. We learned that this stay might be as brief as moments, or could be hours, and that the warrant for Troy’s death was good until midnight.

Georgia executed Troy Davis after 10pm last night. Another casualty to the race and class wars in this country. Another victim to be added to the ever growing list of people murdered by the state.

We must not forget Troy Davis. We must not forget, as he said, that there are many more Troy Davis’. We must not forget the failure of petitions, letters, protests, UN requests, Amnesty International requests, NAACP requests and more. Asking did not work. The justice system does not work. The people, locally, statewide, nationally, and internationally are not listened to when we use our voices.

Now is the time to start thinking about how, as a movement, we can be listened to, and what that will take. What we must do to create real change. How we can stop people from being tortured and dying in jails and prisons. We can start addressing all of these issues here in Richmond. We can build stronger movements. There are next steps to be taken.

There is no peace for Troy Davis or anyone else to rest in. We must honor their memories by continuing to struggle for freedom and against oppression in all of its forms.