Category Archives: law

Rinaldo Walcott on Riots, Policing, and Traditions of Black Refusal

“The Black riot is a refusal of entrenched policing practices that has boiled over. The riot is an expression of revolt with a historical basis in slavery. In activist circles, riots have been renamed uprisings, thereby giving their actions a deeper meaning. And the difference isn’t merely semantic. Riots often garner the attention of state authorities in a way that so-called peaceful protests do not. The riot, or uprising, is an important element of the quest for Black freedom.”

Johnisha Levi: “A Tale of Two Insurrections”

“The Capitol insurrection and the 1898 Wilmington coup share key similarities. They both divided our citizenry between those wanting to guarantee rights for a broader cross section of individuals versus those wanting to restrict them to a privileged few. Both events were also orchestrated from the top down in an attempt to place party above country and to delegitimize our election process. And finally, both instances were perpetuating a so-called Lost Cause.”

Andrew Lee: “The revolutionary potential of abolitionist demands”

“If abolition may not be fulfilled by the state, to abolish the police is not a task for the mayor but a task for us. It is necessarily us, the people in the street and the bystanders who may join us, encouraging each other to complete the abolition together. Just as the Occupy movement called not upon the president but upon us to occupy everything, it is we who must enact the abolition. What appears a request for redress is in fact a call to arms.”

Nathan J. Robinson: ‘Why Property Destruction Isn’t “Violence”’

‘More than simply being a definitional quibble about a particular term, defining violence carefully is about making sure “what happens to people” is placed at the center of our analysis. What happened to George Floyd is not the same as what happens to a looted Target, and while there are those who will want to say the protesters are “as bad as” the thing they are protesting against, that will only be the case when the protesters start pinning innocent, peaceful people to the ground and squeezing the life out of them. We need to keep the moral differences clear.’

“Far-Right Extremists Are Hoping to Turn the George Floyd Protests Into a New Civil War”

‘Armed extremists are showing up to protests and urging a “boogaloo” — code for civil war — online.’

David Sirota: “Who Exactly Is Doing the Looting, and Who’s Being Looted?”

‘Working-class people pilfering convenience-store goods is deemed “looting.” By contrast, rich folk and corporations stealing billions of dollars during their class war is considered good and necessary “public policy” — aided and abetted by arsonist politicians in Washington lighting the crime scene on fire to try to cover everything up.’

“‘Modi is afraid’: women take lead in India’s citizenship protests”

“Strikingly, the loudest voices of dissent have largely been women. From activists and lawyers to students, housewives and grandmothers, both Hindu and Muslim, women across India have been at the forefront of the resistance to the new citizenship law, and a nationwide citizenship test, known as the NRC, which could result in millions of Muslims being declared illegal aliens in their own country. For many, it is the first time they have had any political engagement at all.”

Alex Kostantopoulos: “The Law of the Zapatista: A Presentation about the Laws Passed by EZLN”

“In the autonomous municipalities of Zapatistas, laws that are passed from the Council of Governance are not enforced by police or a judicial system but through a way that treats offenders as members of the community.  Justice is delivered by the authorities of the Zapatistas. They resolve issues among the members of the community and also between Zapatistas and non-Zapatistas.”

“We are here, even if Macron doesn’t want it: One year of the Gilets Jaunes”

“On November 16th the Gilets Jaunes movement marked one year since it burst onto the scene and threw a spanner in the works of President Macron’s agenda.”

CrimethInc.: “Between the Reaction and the Referendum”

“Several questions remain. How can we make sure that the ways we participate in the yellow vest movement and others like it won’t be simply perceived as an “apolitical” expression of anger, giving nationalists a platform to take credit for our efforts? When we act to create a crisis, how do we prevent far right parties from capitalizing on it by promising a return to normal? How do we confront legalist and reactionary ideas within the movement? How should we prepare for the next round, in which we will either face a stronger repressive and authoritarian state or a massive nationalist and reactionary wave? But also—how can we reinforce our connections with everyone else in the streets and traffic circles?”