From New University - by Megan Cole
The skies of Santa Ana were frigid and gray last Saturday, but the only storm in sight was brewing under the roof of El Centro Cultural de Mexico. Here, dozens of vendors, volunteers and community activists gathered for Orange County’s First Anarchist Bookfair.
You arrived in Israel in the mid-1980s, and now, 38.5% of families from Ethiopia live below the poverty line, against an average of 14.3% for all Israeli Jews . You are only 2% of the Israeli population, yet you are 40% of prison inmates. You’re pejoratively called the “Falasha”. Since your childhood, you have suffered mockery, beatings and moral violence because your skin color is not the same. Because you’re “bad Israelis” and “bad Jews”. But these days, you are no longer simply collateral damage of the old dreams of the movement of “national liberation” or Zionist expansionist Israel today; you are no longer mere victims – you hurt fifty cops, attacked the town with stones, and although the mounted police fired stun grenades to disperse you and to protect the municipality of Tel Aviv, you blocked one of the main motorways.
There is something very important happening not only in Baltimore, but across black America. As of now there have been no reported deaths at the hands of protesters in a city where 250 people are killed a year, nearly all of those homicide victims being black. In spite of the fires and the looting, the young people of Baltimore are still showing a greater restraint in their conflicts with police and store-owners than they have shown in their conflicts amongst each other. I say this because for years it has been my family too that has done some of the killing and much of the dying.
The mainstream media attempted to portray the May 1st blockade of the Oakland tech commute a failure. An article on SFGate.com carried the headline “May Day rally fails to block tech bus in Oakland.” Further below in the same article, the author goes on to write, “When the lone bus pulled up at 7:40 a.m., it stopped across the street from protesters and left before they could assemble. Other buses were either rerouted or cancelled in anticipation of the protest.” It is unclear why SFGate and its parent the SF Chronicle would have the same interests as Google and Facebook in this matter. The normal tech commute at MacArthur BART, consisting of over twenty individual buses from Facebook and Google, was reduced to just two buses on the morning of May 1st. Despite the trickery of the mainstream media, the tech commute did not take place.
The most common misconception about anarchism is that it is in favour of ‘chaos’ or some sort of world generally devoid of order and democratic institutions which would leave us at the mercy of predators within our society. Therefore it aims for the destruction of civilisation and democracy itself, which in this view are represented by the state – the guarantor of peace, freedom, and of course, roads.
With schools closed in Baltimore on Tuesday, as a result of yesterday's riots, worker-owned Red Emma’s Bookstore Coffeehouse has stepped in to help. “We’re opening the space up as a safe place for students, and giving them a free lunch,” said book buyer Cullen Nawalkowsky. She added that she regards the city’s decision to close schools as “ill-advised” since, in part, many impoverished kids rely on free school lunches.
Things are looking up a bit for the Emma Goldman Papers Project, a long-running effort to archive the letters and ephemera documenting the vivid life and heady times of the eponymous radical immigrant, feminist and anarchist. Publicity about the project’s imperiled condition has generated a wave of financial support that will keep it going at least through June.