Saturday, April 08, 2023

Main Blog Moved to Kersplebedeb.com!

Since March 2013, the main Kersplebedeb website has been migrated to a primarily wordpress format.

What this means in practical terms is that everything you are used to seeing on Sketchy Thoughts is now being posted straight to Kersplebedeb and simply being automatically mirrored here. So in general, you will probably have a better reading/viewing experience if you head over to Kersplebedeb.

For those who prefer the Sketchy Thoughts blogger layout for whatever reason, this page will continue to be automatically updated whenever something is posted to Kersplebedeb, for at least the short-term future. However, as additional functionality is added to the Kersplebedeb site via wordpress, the Sketchy Thoughts page will probably begin to show its age more and more.



Monday, November 13, 2017

Invisible No More: Police Violence Against Black Women and Women of Color

invisiblenomoreA timely examination of the ways Black women, Indigenous women, and other women of color are uniquely affected by racial profiling, police brutality, and immigration enforcement.

Invisible No More is a timely examination of how Black women, Indigenous women, and women of color experience racial profiling, police brutality, and immigration enforcement. Placing stories of individual women—such as Sandra Bland, Rekia Boyd, Dajerria Becton, Monica Jones, and Mya Hall—in the broader context of the twin epidemics of police violence and mass incarceration, it documents the evolution of movements centering women’s experiences of policing and demands a radical rethinking of our visions of safety—and the means we devote to achieving it.

available from leftwingbooks.net



on the main Kersplebedeb website: http://ift.tt/2ies7ve



Sunday, November 12, 2017

The war between Vietnamese fishermen and the KKK signaled a new type of white supremacy (repost)

It was shrimping season in Texas, and things were getting ugly. In the late 1970s and early 80s, a group of Vietnamese refugees had fled a humanitarian crisis at home and legally resettled in the Galveston Bay area.

Read the rest of this post on the original site at The war between Vietnamese fishermen and the KKK signaled a new type of white supremacy



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Dead fascist poets society: why CasaPound are no book club (repost)

The liberal commentariat seems to be completely unable to resist the allure of the far-right. The latest example: an article on Literary Hub that portrays violent neo-fascist gang CasaPound as some sort of edgy poetry club.

Read the rest of this post on the original site at Dead fascist poets society: why CasaPound are no book club



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The war between Vietnamese fishermen and the KKK signaled a new type of white supremacy



It was shrimping season in Texas, and things were getting ugly. In the late 1970s and early 80s, a group of Vietnamese refugees had fled a humanitarian crisis at home and legally resettled in the Galveston Bay area.

Read the rest of this post on the original site at The war between Vietnamese fishermen and the KKK signaled a new type of white supremacy



Dead fascist poets society: why CasaPound are no book club



The liberal commentariat seems to be completely unable to resist the allure of the far-right. The latest example: an article on Literary Hub that portrays violent neo-fascist gang CasaPound as some sort of edgy poetry club.

Read the rest of this post on the original site at Dead fascist poets society: why CasaPound are no book club



Thursday, November 09, 2017

Support Herman Bell’s Attempt at Parole

15-lens-herman-bell-embed-blog480We’re writing to ask if you are able to write a letter in support of Herman Bell’s next parole attempt, which will be taking place in February 2018. As you probably all know, it’s been a difficult fall for Herman, as he was assaulted viciously by guards earlier this year. However, his health is recovering and he has been so deeply touched by all of the support that he was showered with from all of you. And of course beating the charges was such an incredible win!

Because of the tremendous support Herman received behind the assault, and because activists in New York recently succeeded in having the worst parole commissions removed from the parole board in NY state, and new parole commissioners appointed in their place, many of us feel this 8th time will be his best chance yet of finally getting out of prison, after four-and-a-half decades. We’re all most certainly going to put forward our very best efforts toward this goal.

A pdf packet is linked to here containing information re: parole-support letters for Herman. The due date for all letters is December 15, 2017. The address of where to send the letters is in the attachment. All of the information contained in the attached documents can also be found on Herman’s website, on the Parole Efforts tab (freehermanbell.org). We are trying to focus on getting letters from “influential” people, on getting letter from people who have met or corresponded with Herman, and having as many letters as possible on professional letterhead. Also, ideally letters would be mailed rather than emailed.

This is an important initiative; Herman has spent most of his life behind bars, a result of the U.S. government’s war against the Black Liberation Movement. It is time we got him out!



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REVEALED: The white supremacists behind alt-right posters around the city



Two groups were photographed on U of T campus last night, and Torontoist has identified several participants. Last night, two groups of white supremacists were caught on camera putting up “It’s Okay To Be White” posters up around the University of Toronto campus.

Read the rest of this post on the original site at REVEALED: The white supremacists behind alt-right posters around the city



REVEALED: The white supremacists behind alt-right posters around the city (repost)

Two groups were photographed on U of T campus last night, and Torontoist has identified several participants. Last night, two groups of white supremacists were caught on camera putting up “It’s Okay To Be White” posters up around the University of Toronto campus.

Read the rest of this post on the original site at REVEALED: The white supremacists behind alt-right posters around the city



on the main Kersplebedeb website: http://ift.tt/2AmMs8x



Wednesday, November 08, 2017

montreal: GRANDE MANIFESTATION CONTRE LA HAINE ET LE RACISME / Mass Demonstration Against Hate and Racism

manif12

A quick reminder: in Montreal this Sunday November 12 come out to the mass demonstration against hate and racism, at place emelie gamelin at 2pm (metro berri uqam)

For more information, see http://ift.tt/2zIcXVF or on facebook at http://ift.tt/2ztXN7y

For more information on the struggle against the far right in Quebec, see http://ift.tt/2xgRMcl



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feministfair2017

The Feminist Twins are proud to present the 4th annual Ottawa Feminist Fair taking place on Sunday November 12th at the Montgomery Legion.

Where: Montgomery Centretown Legion; 330 Kent St., Ottawa, Ontario K2P 2A6
When: 11am-4pm, November 12
facebook: http://ift.tt/2Ar5aMR

This event is a vendor’s craft market, fundraiser, and showcase for several non-profit organizations. It is ALL AGES, pay what you can (no one turned away for lack of funds!), with proceeds going to Voice Found. We are also accepting toiletries donations for STORM which support STW and women at risk. We are also seeking volunteers.

Some things you can expect from our vendors include buttons, pins, patches, jewellery, clothing, bags, books, zines, prints, art, cupcakes, and more! Come support local artists!

VENDOR LIST

Second Aura
Sadie & June
Felix Embroidery
Lucky Little Queer
Prickly Business
Cotton Pony
Kitsch&Curiosities
Ode to August
MyOhMy Jewellery
Chidima Dezigns
Kersplebedeb Publishing and Distribution
Anxiety Slug
Astropuke
Nicole Murphy Photography

COMMUNITY TABLES

Purple Sisters
Ottawa Rape Crisis Centre
Match International Women’s Fund



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Thursday, October 26, 2017

Some Antifascist Events in Montreal October 26-Nov 12

ANTIFALancement du livre: Antifa – The Anti-Fascist Handbook, de Mark Bray / Book Launch: Antifa – The Antifascist Handbook, by Mark Bray
vendredi 27 octobre, 19 h 30 / Friday October 27, 7:30pm
@ CEDA , 2515 Rue Delisle, Montréal; Métro Lionel-Groulx
facebook: http://ift.tt/2hdYSsf

Contingent Antiraciste ET Antifasciste dans la manif contre l’austerité organisés par la Coalition Main Rouge
Samedi, 28 octobre, 1pm / Saturday Oct. 28, 1pm
PARC VILLERAY (coin Jarry et Christophe-Colomb)
facebook: http://ift.tt/2zGFhaQ

Grande manifestation contre la haine et le racisme / Mass Demonstration Against Hate and Racism
dimanche le 12 november, 14h00 / Sunday, November 12 at 2 PM
Place Émilie-Gamelin
facebook: http://ift.tt/2hcQzgb
web: http://ift.tt/2zIcXVF

Pour de plus amples informations au sujet de la lutte antifasciste à Montréal, visitez http://ift.tt/2xgRMcl

For more information about the antifascist struggle in Montreal, see http://ift.tt/2xgRMcl



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Monday, October 23, 2017

David Gilbert’s Looking at the U.S. White Working Class Historically

Llwwch_coverooking at the U.S. White Working Class Historically tackles one of the supreme issues for our movement, the contradiction embodied in the term “white working class.” On the one hand there is the class designation that should imply, along with all other workers of the world, a fundamental role in the overthrow of capitalism. On the other hand, there is the identification of being part of a (“white”) oppressor nation. Gilbert seeks to understand the origins of this contradiction, its historical development, as well as possibilities to weaken and ultimately transform the situation. In other words, how can people organize a break with white supremacy and foster solidarity with the struggles of people of color, both within the United States and around the world?

Gilbert began this project in the early 1980s, while in jail facing charges stemming from his activities in the revolutionary underground. It  started as a pamphlet reflecting on writings about race and class by Ted Allen, W.E.B. DuBois, and J. Sakai.  In the 1990s, Gilbert added a retrospective essay, reviewing lessons from the 1960s and the New Left he had been active in at the time. Over the years, Looking at the White Working Class Historically (as it was known in previous editions) has been widely circulated across multiple waves and generations of activists. As Gilbert writes in the introduction to this 2017 edition, this text remains the most popular of his writings for younger radicals seeking to build movements against racism.

This new edition contains all the material from previous versions (including an essay by J. Sakai), along with a new introduction, Gilbert’s take on the election of Donald Trump, and an extensive new text surveying changes in the global political order since the 1960s. More than ever, Looking at the U.S. White Working Class Historically explores and illuminates perspectives for radical change and resistance to racism in the United States today.

 

What People Are Saying

“This book embodies what I have come to expect from all of David Gilbert’s writings: precision insight tempered with humanity, nuanced historical analysis for the purpose of learning lessons, and an everpresent willingness and even insistence on questioning everything, especially his own work. Gilbert’s honesty in his introduction about what this book lacks strengthens rather than weakens its impact – He does not pretend to have all of the answers, instead insisting the only right answer is a collective one. He invites conversation and critique rather than running from it, highlighted so clearly with a rebuttal by one of the people’s work he delves into. This book, like the politics needed to build a new future, shows struggle as the dynamic living growing creature it is.” —Walidah Imarisha, author of Angels with Dirty Faces: Three Stories of Crime, Prison, and Redemption, and co-editor of Octavia’s Brood: Science Fiction Stories from Social Justice Movements

“David Gilbert’s analytical clarity, commitment to universal justice, and unswerving integrity shine through his words.” —Barbara Smith, founding member of the Combahee River Collective, and of Kitchen Table: Women of Color Press, author of The Truth That Never Hurts: Writings on Race, Gender and Freedom

When Malcolm X said John Brown was his standard for white activism, he could have easily meant David Gilbert. He is our generation’s John Brown. His support of Black liberation as a method of freeing the world is to be studied, appreciated, and applied.” —Jared A. Ball, author of I Mix What I Like! A Mixtape Manifesto, and professor of Media and Africana Studies at Morgan State University

“If we want to organize white people against racism and for racial justice, if you want to build up a broad-based majority for economic, racial, and gender justice, if you are enraged at the devastation of structural inequality in our lives and on our planet, then this book is key.  Class inequality is organized through white supremacy, and the ruling class strategy of divide and rule of pitting working class and poor white people against communities of color, must be understood.  David Gilbert gives us historical analysis to understand this ruling class strategy, and how we can unite white people across class to a collective liberation vision with racial justice at the center.” —Chris Crass, author of Towards the “Other America”: Anti-Racist Resources for White People Taking Action for Black Lives Matter

 

About the Author

David Gilbert, a longtime anti-racist and anti-imperialist, first became active in the Civil Rights movement in 1961. In 1965, he started the Vietnam Committee at Columbia University; in 1967 he co-authored the first Students for a Democratic Society pamphlet naming the system “imperialism”; and he was active in the Columbia strike of 1968. He later joined the Weather Underground and spent a total of 10 years underground.

David has been imprisoned in New York State since October 20th, 1981, when a unit of the Black Liberation Army along with allied white revolutionaries tried to get funds for the struggle by robbing a Brinks truck. This tragically resulted in a shoot-out in which a Brinks guard and two police officers were killed. David is serving a sentence of 75 years (minimum) to life under New York State’s “felony murder” law, whereby all participants in a robbery, even if they are unarmed and non-shooters, are equally responsible for all deaths that occur. While in prison, he’s been a pioneer for peer education on AIDS and has continued to write and advocate against oppression. He’s been involved with the annual Certain Days Freedom for Political Prisoners Calendar since 2001 and has written two books from prison that are available from Kersplebedeb: No Surrender and Love and Struggle, as well as the pamphlet Our Commitment is to Our Communities: Mass Incarceration, Political Prisoners and Building a Movement for Community-Based Justice.

You can write to David at:

David Gilbert #83A6158
Wende Correctional Facility,
3040 Wende Road
Alden, New York 14004-1187

 

Looking at the U.S White Working Class Historically can be ordered from leftwingbooks.net here

The press sheet for this book (pdf) can be downloaded here



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Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Antifa: The Antifascist Handbook

antifa handbookIn the wake of tragic events in Charlottesville, VA, and Donald Trump’s initial refusal to denounce the white nationalists behind it all, the “antifa” opposition movement is suddenly appearing everywhere. But what is it, precisely? And where did it come from?

As long as there has been fascism, there has been anti-fascism — also known as “antifa.” Born out of resistance to Mussolini and Hitler in Europe during the 1920s and ’30s, the antifa movement has suddenly burst into the headlines amidst opposition to the Trump administration and the alt-right. They could be seen in news reports, often clad all in black with balaclavas covering their faces, fighting police at the presidential inauguration, on California college campuses protesting right-wing speakers, and, most recently, on the streets of Charlottesville, VA, protecting, among others, a group of ministers including Cornel West from neo-Nazi violence. (West would later tell reporters, “The anti-fascists saved our lives.”)

Simply, antifa aims to deny fascists the opportunity to promote their oppressive politics, and to protect tolerant communities from acts of violence promulgated by fascists. Critics say shutting down political adversaries is anti-democratic; antifa adherents argue that the horrors of fascism must never be allowed the slightest chance to triumph again.

In a smart and gripping investigation, historian and former Occupy Wall Street organizer Mark Bray provides a detailed survey of the full history of anti-fascism from its origins to the present day — the first transnational history of postwar anti-fascism in English. Based on interviews with anti-fascists from around the world, Antifa details the tactics of the movement and the philosophy behind it, offering insight into the growing but little-understood resistance fighting back against fascism in all its guises.

Antifa: The Anti-Fascist Handbook is available from leftwingbooks.net

Canada Book Launches

Toronto, Wednesday October 18 at 7pm
Workers’ Action Centre: 720 Spadina, Room 202
facebook: http://ift.tt/2zjOrdb

Ottawa, Thursday October 19 at 7:00 pm (doors open at 6:30)
Room 31, Dalhousie Community Centre
755 Somerset Street West
facebook: http://ift.tt/2zxzepI

Montreal, Friday, October 27 at 7:30pm (doors open at 7)
CEDA, 2515 Rue Delisle, Montréal
Métro Lionel-Groulx
facebook: http://ift.tt/2zidAVr

 

What People Are Saying

“Focused and persuasive… Bray’s book is many things: the first English-language transnational history of antifa, a how-to for would-be activists, and a record of advice from anti-Fascist organizers past and present.”—The New Yorker

“Insurgent activist movements need spokesmen, intellectuals and apologists, and for the moment Mark Bray is filling in as all three… The book’s most enlightening contribution is on the history of anti-fascist efforts over the past century, but its most relevant for today is its justification for stifling speech and clobbering white supremacists.”—Carlos Lozada, The Washington Post

“[Bray’s] analysis is methodical, and clearly informed by both his historical training and 15 years of organizing, which included Occupy Wall Street…Antifa: The Anti-Fascist Handbook couldn’t have emerged at a more opportune time. Bray’s arguments are incisive and cohesive, and his consistent refusal to back down from principle makes the book a crucial intervention in our political moment.”—San Francisco Chronicle

“An excellent primer and essential reading.”—Counterpunch

“Mark Bray does a great job detailing the movement’s growth in the U.S. and giving historical context to the antifa’s resurgence. Read the book if you want to learn even more…”—Reveal News

“[An] excellent introduction, which serves as a reasoned and passionate defense…Antifa: The Anti-fascist Handbook serves as an educational tool for those whose inclination is to support antifa because they oppose fascism and white supremacy, but remain on the fence… Bray’s concise and multilayered text is an essential aid in that task.”—Counterpunch

About the Author

Mark Bray is a historian of human rights, terrorism, and political radicalism in Modern Europe who was one of the organizers of Occupy Wall Street. He is the author of Translating Anarchy: The Anarchism of Occupy Wall Street, and the co-editor of Anarchist Education and the Modern School: A Francisco Ferrer Reader. His work has appeared in Foreign PolicyCritical QuarterlyROAR Magazine, and numerous edited volumes. He is currently a lecturer at Dartmouth College.



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Robyn Maynard’s POLICING BLACK LIVES available now!

policingblacklivesDelving behind Canada’s veneer of multiculturalism and tolerance, Policing Black Lives traces the violent realities of anti-blackness from the slave ships to prisons, classrooms and beyond. Robyn Maynard provides readers with the first comprehensive account of nearly four hundred years of state-sanctioned surveillance, criminalization and punishment of Black lives in Canada.

While highlighting the ubiquity of Black resistance, Policing Black Lives traces the still-living legacy of slavery across multiple institutions, shedding light on the state’s role in perpetuating contemporary Black poverty and unemployment, racial profiling, law enforcement violence, incarceration, immigration detention, deportation, exploitative migrant labour practices, disproportionate child removal and low graduation rates.

Emerging from a critical race feminist framework that insists that all Black lives matter, Maynard’s intersectional approach to anti-Black racism addresses the unique and understudied impacts of state violence as it is experienced by Black women, Black people with disabilities, as well as queer, trans, and undocumented Black communities.

A call-to-action, Policing Black Lives urges readers to work toward dismantling structures of racial domination and re-imagining a more just society.

Policing Black Lives is available from leftwingbooks.net

What People Are Saying

“Robyn Maynard’s meticulously-researched and compelling analysis of state violence challenges prevailing narratives of Canadian multiculturalism and inclusion by examining how structures of racism and ideologies of gender are complexly anchored in global histories of colonization and slavery. This book should be read not only by those who have a specific interest in Canadian histories and social justice movements but by anyone interested in the abolitionist and revolutionary potential of the Black Lives Matters movement more broadly.” — Angela Y. Davis

“A crucial work in chronicling Black experiences in Canada. If you only read one book this year, make it this one. Policing Black Lives is a comprehensive and necessary book for anyone who cares about the past, present and future of Black life in this country. Brilliant work!” — Black Lives Matter Toronto

“In this eye-opening and timely book, Robyn Maynard deftly and conclusively pulls back the veil on anti-Black racism in Canada, exploding the myth of multiculturalism through an emphatically and unapologetically intersectional lens. In compelling and accessible prose, Maynard provides a sweeping overview of Canadian state violence from colonial times to the present, seamlessly articulating the relationship – and distinctions – between settler colonialism and anti-Blackness, and centering Black women, trans and gender nonconforming people within the broader narrative. Through an analysis squarely situated in the global socioeconomic context, Policing Black Lives explores parallels between state violence in Canada and its neighbor to the South, as well as the unique legal, social and historical forces informing criminalization through segregation, surveillance, “stop and frisk”/carding/street checks, the war on drugs, gang policing, the school to prison pipeline, welfare “fraud” and child welfare enforcement, and the conflation of immigration and criminality. The result is both eye-opening and chilling, firmly pointing to shared fronts of struggle across borders. Policing Black Lives is a critical read for all in Canada and the United States who #SayHerName and assert that #BlackLivesMatter, and essential to movements for Black liberation on Turtle Island.” — Andrea J. Ritchie, author Invisible No More: Police Violence Against Black Women and Women of Color

“To understand this moment in Canada when Black communities are asserting that Black Lives really do matter, readers need this book.” — Sylvia D. Hamilton

“Grounded in an impressive and expansive treatment of Black Canadian history, Maynard has written a powerful account of state anti-Black violence in Canada. Empirically rich and theoretically nimble, this work is an outstanding contribution to Black Canadian Studies.”— Barrington Walker, Queen’s University

“Timely, urgent, and cogent…brilliantly elucidates the grotesque anti-Black racist practices coming from the state, and other institutions imbued with power over Black people’s lives.”— Afua Cooper

“Robyn Maynard offers powerful lessons for making anti-blackness in Canada legible to activists, scholars, policy makers, and community members committed to building a future nation—and world—free of racism, heteropatriarchy, xenophobia, and exploitation. “— Erik S. McDuffie, author of Sojourning for Freedom: Black Women, American Communism, and the Making of Black Left Feminism

“Thanks, Robyn Maynard, for opening all of our eyes to a scary history and frightening present for Black Canada.”— Patrisse Cullors-Khan, co-founder of the Black Lives Matter Global Network

 



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2018 Slingshot Organizers Have Arrived!

By far the most popular way for anarchists to stay organized, the Slingshot 2018 organizers are here, complete with mini-calendar, daybook planner, address book section, international radical contact list, and nifty what happened on this day notes scattered throughout. The artwork, as ever, is wonderful in a chaotic punk rock way.

Now in its 24th year of publication, Slingshot is a 176 page planner/agenda with radical dates for every day of the year, space to write your phone numbers, a contact list of radical groups around the globe, menstrual calendar, info on police repression, extra note pages, plus much more. Slingshot has a tough layflat binding and a laminated cover, and comes in 16 cover colors printed with either black or silver ink (depending on how dark the paper stock is)—you can see most of these on the order pages (below) — if you have a preference indicate it when ordering, we’ll do our best to accommodate.

The Slingshot planner comes in two sizes, pocket size (4.25 inches X 5.5 inches) perfect bound, and a spiral bound larger size.

TO ORDER THE POCKET SIZE FROM LEFTWINGBOOKS.NET CLICK HERE

TO ORDER THE SPIRAL BOUND LARGER SIZE FROM LEFTWINGBOOKS.NET CLICK HERE

slinshot2018_smalls

sshot_larges2018

Kersplebedeb Leftwingbooks.net is happy to be the official distributor of Slingshot in Canada.



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Monday, October 09, 2017

Certain Days Freedom for Political Prisoners Calendar 2018 — Back from the Printers!

The Certain Days: Freedom for Political Prisoners Calendar is one of the most important and wonderful products that i am lucky enough to be able to distribute — and the 2018 calendar is back from the printers and available now! (you can order from leftwingbooks.net here)
Certain Days is a joint fundraising and educational project between outside organizers in Montreal, Toronto, and New York, in partnership with three political prisoners being held in maximum-security prisons in New York State: David Gilbert, Robert Seth Hayes and Herman Bell. As the calendar collective explains, “The initial project was suggested by Herman in 2001, and has been shaped throughout the years by all of our ideas, discussions, and analysis. All of the current members of the outside collective are grounded in day-to-day organizing work other than the calendar, on issues ranging from migrant justice to community media to prisoner solidarity. We work from an anti-imperialist, anti-racist, anti-capitalist, feminist, queer- and trans- liberationist position.”

The proceeds from Certain Days 2018 will be divided among these groups: Addameer Prisoners Support and Human Rights Association (Palestine), Release Aging People in Prison (RAPP) and other groups in need.

To see thumbnails of the artwork in this year’s calendar, scroll down —

The following is this year’s statement from the CD collective:

CERTAIN DAYS 2018: AWAKENING RESISTANCE

This year’s theme has been a bit of a moving target. We wanted to showcase different groups and movements who are Awakening Resistance to the current political climate, the one brought to the fore by Trump’s entry into office, though it clearly goes beyond that one person and has deep roots that precede his election. When we put out our call for submissions in March, many of us were working to understand the changes in tone and substance of the political establishment, and to respond—both personally and as a movement—to the increased blatancy and viciousness of far-right attacks, as well as increased state repression. In the intervening months, much analysis has emerged to explain this political moment, and to help understand the history that brought us here. On both sides of the U.S.-Canadian border, though the context differs, organizations and campaigns have formed to fight back. But much remains to be done.

The contributions we received for the 2018 calendar range from confronting the far-right to building resistance inside prisons. Many highlighted campaigns and projects began well before Trump ran for office, underscoring the fact that this “new” political reality is simply an outgrowth of processes that extend far back in time. In the face of increasingly bold racism and xenophobia, people are stepping up to challenge Islamophobia, anti-immigrant measures, and attacks on reproductive justice. Important dialogues have opened up—or been revitalized—on the role of antisemitism in upholding white supremacy, and on the relationship between the far-right and the mainstream capitalist establishment. We invite you to use this edition of Certain Days as a tool to further these efforts. Discuss these articles with fellow organizers. Use the calendar to fundraise for your project, or as a conversation-starter in your community around these issues. Get in touch with our contributors to continue the conversation.

David Gilbert’s essay below describes the landscape we find ourselves in, and the task ahead. We encourage you to read it as a preface for the rest of the articles.

As we work to build the calendar, Certain Days is also growing our collective. This year, we have added the category of “supporting member,” and welcome several people aboard in that capacity—some of whom have already been helping to make this project possible for many years.

– the Certain Days collective: Sara Falconer, Helen Hudson, Daniel McGowan, Amy Schwartz
– supporting members: Josh Davidson, Aric McBay, Tasha Zamudio

 

The Decline of Imperialism: Dangers and Opportunities, by David Gilbert

Trump’s election has set off an exciting eruption of protests; at the same time, the challenges we face are daunting. To fully grasp the dangers and opportunities ahead we need to look at the decline of imperialism, which is the context for the rise of this loathsome demagogue. Increased divisions, confusion, and strategy ip- ops within the ruling class are further signs of decline. “Decline” does not mean “collapse,” far from it. The convulsions of world capitalism have been in process for 45 years and still have a ways to go. The predatory beast, now wounded, can lash out in even more vicious ways, but that vehemence stems from its vulnerability.

Imperialism brutally beat back the revolutionary challenges of the 1960s, globally and within the U.S. But the system failed to achieve well-functioning stability. Indeed, since 1971 the economies of the U.S. and other rich nations have been mired in stagnation (chronically slow growth) and have been teetering in and out of crises. The responses typically have entailed even greater concentration of wealth at the top and expanding the balloon of speculative nance—temporary “solutions” that pave the way for more severe problems in the future. We can expect them to race even faster down this dead end road now that Trump’s “populist” billionaires are in the driver’s seat.

In the Global South, international nance imposed a ruthless regime of debt peonage, which they call “structural adjustment programs,” to extract even more wealth from the wretched of the earth—wreaking devastating damage on the peoples and environment there. At the same time, the CIA fostered reactionary sectarian forces to undermine the unity needed for national liberation. A range of military interventions turned whole countries—Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Yemen, Syria, Sudan—into killing fields of chaos and suffering. On top of the disruptions of wars, droughts made terribly worse by global warming threaten the lives of tens of millions of human beings with famine.

At home, imperialism has preferred to rule by keeping the majority loyal, or at least placated, with a rising standard of living. But since 1971, what had been decades of rising wages levelled off and job insecurity got worse. The rulers have deflected (with various ups and downs rhetorically) white working class frustrations toward racially- coded scapegoats: “welfare queens,” “criminals,” immigrants, Muslims. This despicable approach has a strong foundation in a U.S. built on white and male supremacy and on imperial expansion. Repression, both state and extra-legal, is likely to get worse. Our movements need to be prepared—psychologically, with support and legal networks, and by building communities of solidarity across issues and identities.

At the same time, Trump’s more naked exposure of the obscenities of capitalism has created wider interest in anti-racist education, organizing, and mobilizations. The range of people under attack can be a basis for forging unity and promoting an understanding that the problem is the system as a whole.

Imperialism’s great strength from global exploitation is also, potentially, its downfall in that the vast majority of people in the world have a fundamental interest in revolutionary change. For those of us in the Global North, critical tools for hewing a path toward unity entail a sorely needed anti-war movement and an environmental struggle that has a deeply global perspective. Such developments could also provide a basis for showing at least a sector of white workers the potential, the more viable alternative, of developing a cooperative economy that prioritizes equality and environmental recovery, and that learns from, as well as gives back to, the Global South and to people of colour communities within the U.S. and Canada.

We face the fight of our lives, with the very survival of humanity and countless other species at stake. History calls on us not only to be creative and courageous but also to operate fully with love in our hearts.

Some Artwork from the 2017 Certain Days Calendar:

 

by Jesus Barraza


by Serena Tang


by Roger Peet


by Sophia Dawson


by EE Vera


by Fernando Marti


by Billie Belo


by Marius Mason


by UB Topia


by Design Action Collective


by Annie Morgan Banks and Mutope Duguma


by Zola

 

Once again, to order the calendar, click here!



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Friday, September 15, 2017

From Prison to Ph.D.: The Redemption and Rejection of Michelle Jones (repost)

Michelle Jones was released last month after serving more than two decades in an Indiana prison for the murder of her 4-year-old son. The very next day, she arrived at New York University, a promising Ph.D. student in American studies. In a breathtaking feat of rehabilitation, Ms.

Read the rest of this post on the original site at From Prison to Ph.D.: The Redemption and Rejection of Michelle Jones



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Thursday, September 14, 2017

From Prison to Ph.D.: The Redemption and Rejection of Michelle Jones



Michelle Jones was released last month after serving more than two decades in an Indiana prison for the murder of her 4-year-old son. The very next day, she arrived at New York University, a promising Ph.D. student in American studies. In a breathtaking feat of rehabilitation, Ms.

Read the rest of this post on the original site at From Prison to Ph.D.: The Redemption and Rejection of Michelle Jones



15-lens-herman-bell-embed-blog480Dear Friends,

We are asking people to write letters to Anthony Annucci, Commissioner of New York Dept. of Corrections, making the following demands (a sample letter follows that we would like you to use):

  • That Herman Bell be immediately given adequate medical screening and attention at an outside hospital;
  • That CO J Saunders and the other officers responsible for the beating be fired;
  • DROP THE CHARGES – That the ridiculous charges brought against Herman be dropped immediately
  • Mr. Bell should be returned at least to general population (he had been on the Honor Block at Great Meadow and despite his request was never given a reason for being moved to general population);
  • That Mr. Bell’s family visits be reinstated;
  • That Mr. Bell be moved to a facility where his family visiting can take place and be rescheduled at the earliest possible date.

 

_____________________________________

Anthony Annucci
Commissioner
Department of Corrections and Community Supervision
1220 Washington Ave
Albany, NY 12226

Dear Commissioner Annucci:

I am writing in concern and outrage over the unprovoked beating by Great Meadow C.F. correctional officers of Herman Bell, #79C0262.

On September 5^th , with no provocation, correctional officers assaulted this widely respected elder. The recreation yard was being closed following a disturbance in which Herman had no part. He was told to line up with hands behind his back, which he did. When all other men on the yard were escorted through one door back into the prison, only Herman was escorted into a separate entrance and into a hallway with no one around except correctional officers—and with no surveillance cameras.  In the hall, one officer began beating Herman in the face, breaking his glasses and knocking him to the floor. That guard continued to punch and kick Mr. Bell while he was on the ground.  Around 5-6 additional guards arrived at this scene and joined in, punching and kicking Mr. Bell all over his body while he was on the ground.  He was kneed in the chest and stomach, breaking two of his ribs.  One guard then grabbed his head and slammed it into the ground three times, at which point Mr. Bell thought his life would be ending.  He was excessively maced at close range all over his face and eyes, causing temporarily blindness and inability to breathe.

After being brought to the prison infirmary, Mr. Bell was not treated right away but was left alone for hours in an isolation cell.  When staff finally looked in on him, he asked why he was there and was told he was accused of assaulting one of the officers. This charge is absurd.

The idea that this 69-year-old man would have hit an officer is ludicrous, as he was about to have a family visit (the first in two and a half years) and was beginning preparations for an appearance at the Board of Parole this coming February. People who had spoken to Herman on the phone the day before the incident attest to the fact that he was looking forward to the family visit with great anticipation, and that he was optimistic about his chances at the Board, given recent changes in parole regulations and the appointment of new commissioners. He had expressed similar thoughts and feelings to many of his friends and family. There is absolutely no doubt that he did not commit any infraction on September 5th ; he also has not had a ticket in the past 20 years.  He has never been accused of assaulting staff.

This brutal assault by Great Meadow guards constitutes not only staff abuse but also elder abuse.  Mr. Bell will be 70 years of age in four months. He was badly injured in the beating. An X-ray, the only diagnostic screening he received for his injuries, revealed two cracked ribs, and he has a massive, swollen black eye and bruises all over his body.  He has suffered severe headaches due to the beat-down, and the vision in his left eye – which remains completely red – is seriously impaired. Mr. Bell requires both a CT scan of the head and an ophthalmology examination.

I write to demand that you take these actions:

  • That Herman Bell be immediately given adequate medical screening and attention at an outside hospital;
  • That CO J Saunders and the other officers responsible for the beating be fired;
  • That the ridiculous charges brought against Herman be dropped immediately and that he be returned at least to general population (he had been on the Honor Block at Great Meadow and despite his request was never given a reason for being moved to general population);
  • That Mr. Bell’s family visits be reinstated;
  • That Mr. Bell be moved to a facility where his family visiting can take place and be rescheduled at the earliest possible date.

    Sincerely,
    NAME/ADDRESS



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Wednesday, September 13, 2017

A New Class Politics (repost)

Class is back on the agenda of the European left. That is good news. The reasons, however, are unfortunate. It is primarily the growing working-class support for right-wing parties and movements that troubles left-wing authors, activists, and organizers. Two poles have emerged in the debate.

Read the rest of this post on the original site at A New Class Politics



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Monday, September 11, 2017

Un groupe skinhead québécois cause une commotion en France (repost)

Un spectacle de musique et de combats illégaux mettant en vedette un groupe québécois d’extrême droite vient de causer une commotion dans un village du sud-est de la France, où le maire a interdit l’événement. En vain.

Read the rest of this post on the original site at Un groupe skinhead québécois cause une commotion en France



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Un groupe skinhead québécois cause une commotion en France



Un spectacle de musique et de combats illégaux mettant en vedette un groupe québécois d'extrême droite vient de causer une commotion dans un village du sud-est de la France, où le maire a interdit l'événement. En vain.

Read the rest of this post on the original site at Un groupe skinhead québécois cause une commotion en France



Thursday, September 07, 2017

Not Your Grandfather’s Antifascism (repost)

Following the clashes in Charlottesville and the massive anti-fascist demonstrations afterwards in Durham, Boston, and the Bay Area, the struggle against fascism has arrived in the consciousness of the general public.

Read the rest of this post on the original site at Not Your Grandfather’s Antifascism



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The Men Who Left Were White (repost)

There are three things you should know. First: I’m not biracial.

Read the rest of this post on the original site at The Men Who Left Were White



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Not Your Grandfather’s Antifascism



Following the clashes in Charlottesville and the massive anti-fascist demonstrations afterwards in Durham, Boston, and the Bay Area, the struggle against fascism has arrived in the consciousness of the general public.

Read the rest of this post on the original site at Not Your Grandfather’s Antifascism



The Men Who Left Were White



There are three things you should know. First: I'm not biracial.

Read the rest of this post on the original site at The Men Who Left Were White



Saturday, August 12, 2017

MONTRÉAL: Manif contre l’extrême droite en solidarité avec Charlottesville

ANTIFAWhen: Sunday, August 13 at 7 PM
Where: Square Phillips (Corner of Saint Catherine St W, Montreal, Quebec H3B 3E9)

Facebook: http://ift.tt/2wTBLs5



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IGD: Guide to Charlottesville Solidarity Actions Around the World

In solidarity with our friends at CrimethInc.

On August 12, a fascist murdered one person and injured dozens more by driving a vehicle into a crowd of anti-racist protestors in Charlottesville, Virginia. Fascists had been calling for violence in advance; they made it very clear that this would happen. We are calling for solidarity actions to take place around the country in response—to support the bereaved, to encourage those who courageously stood up to fascist murderers, to reach out to our communities about this situation, and to show that we will not stand for this. Here, you can find a list of solidarity demonstrations and a PDF of a flier you can print and distribute to inform others about this situation.

To add your event, email: info [at] itsgoingdown [dot] org and send updates about solidarity demonstrations to us via @crimethinc or rollingthunder@crimethinc.com.

General Purpose Flyer

Download and Print the PDF Flyer Here

On August 12, an alt-right fascist murdered a person and injured dozens more by driving a vehicle into a crowd of anti-racist protestors in Charlottesville, Virginia. We are calling for solidarity actions to take place around the country to respond to this.

If we allow the alt-right and neo-Nazis to organize in our communities, the consequences will be fatal. Charlottesville is just the beginning. If the alt-right can get away with murder there, none of us will be safe. We have to stand up to white supremacists, we have to shut down and chase out these bigots every time they try to organize, or else they will kill more people.

You are a target. These bigots target people of color, women, Muslims, Jews, LGBTQ people, immigrants, radicals, liberals, and anyone who doesn’t agree with them—not just with words, but with violence. Emboldened by Trump’s election, alt-right and fascist bigots have already shot and wounded protestors against racism in Minneapolis and Seattle, stabbed bystanders to death in Portland for intervening against Islamophobia, and sowed hatred and discord across the country. We are betraying our friends and neighbors if we don’t take a stand.

The police will not protect us. They murder over a thousand people every year in this country, and infiltrate and attack our demonstrations when we stand up against alt-right terror. We have to organize to defend ourselves.

Saturday, August 12th

Sunday August 13th

Monday August 14th

Sunday August 20th



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