Thursday, August 13, 2009


Smack A White Boy Round II: CrimethInc. Eviction

Facts, Questions, General Clarifications, and Opinion

Here are ten additional facts, clarifications, and opinion points. The ones with original quotes are responses to comments left on the posting of the first fifteen points.

  1. It has been said by many that the action participants claimed to be representing surrounding poc communities and all people of color. While easily misunderstood by some and opportunistically spun by others, the truth of the matter is that no claims of representation of surrounding communities or of people of color in general were made.

  2. At least one alternate account of the action (Tyler’s specifically) non-consensually included a description of the apoc caucus that occurred before the action. Caucuses are suppose to be safe spaces for the oppressed. It is a violation of this safety and the assumed confidentiality of the caucus to publish a report on what was shared during. It is the opinion of this author that all such reports should be immediately removed from the public view and those who participated in the caucus should receive a prompt apology.

  1. Several poc who are against the action have stated that action participants should have consulted with them ahead of time, and have made this statement in a way implying that simply because the action organizers are poc and they are too, that there is automatic camaraderie and the lack of consultation disrespected this. This assumption seems to ignore that white people have colonized more than our lands, throughout history and continuing today they wage sophisticated campaigns to colonize our minds. Unfortunately they’ve had enough success that I cannot assume someone is on my side simply because they are poc.

  1. In one account of the action, Tyler, one of the poc crimethinc organizers, makes assumptions about the physical capabilities of the action participants and makes arrogant claims about their own. The author wants to state simply: I don’t care how tall and strong you are Tyler, you have no idea what any of us could have done and I’d be more careful about letting your physical abilities get to your head, you might find yourself quickly dispatched one of these days by someone presumably less capable.

  1. It was claimed that two white “allies” that were at the convergence all week, Sand and Marvel, did not help communicate the policy information that would have helped lessen the impact of the convergence on the surrounding communities. This is blatantly false. Both communicated to people hanging outside of the building and massing on the lawn that they should keep indoors or go the park or cemetery. They did this repeatedly, and for the most part people did not listen. It seems clear to the author that these kinds of claims are designed to absolve organizers of their egregious conduct and failure to enforce their own policies, designed to decredit the efforts of white people who actually saw a problem and sought to act, and designed to divert attention away from the problematic nature of the convergence itself.

  1. Organizers of the convergence (and perhaps a few others) have claimed that the surrounding communities did not have a problem with the convergence. It is the experience of at least two poc who attended the entire convergence that they were looked to by poc in the surrounding neighborhoods for answers as to why masses of white people were in the community. Their discomfort was obvious. Passing by in a vehicle one poc yelled towards the convergence space “what are you doing in the hood?!” Just because most were not as vocal as this poc does not mean that most were okay with the convergence. Silence or passive acceptance does not equal consent.

  1. “I believe to destroy the systems of oppression, we must be avowedly anti-sectarian. We must build coalitions. And we must be balanced in our patience and anger when we're dealing with the contradictions within our allies or would-be allies.”

What is meant by the term sectarian here? I see white people as the oppressor and I don't see white anarchists struggling for the same thing as I. I've been working for white radicals for sometime now and they have never struggled with me. Always their own agenda. Always trying to set the terms for my participation. It is clear to me that my experience with them is no aberration. The claim that the SAWB2 action stems from sectarianism seems to assume that we are in a struggle together and there are different parties. I don't agree with this assumption. While white "anarchists" package and portray their role in society differently, they have no more legitimacy to me than overt white supremacists.

  1. ” This action put people in physical, political, and legal danger.”

It is not the action that put people in physical, legal, and political danger. CrimethInc. convergences are preconfigured as spaces where all these dangers already exist, ready to be realized at the first opportunity. CrimethInc. organizers and attendees are to blame for extending these dangers to non-consenting communities.

  1. White “anarchists” within and beyond CrimethInc. seem to think they really are anarchist simply because they are anti-capitalist. Simply put, anarchism is NOT synonymous with anti-capitalism.

  1. Some have claimed that the eviction divided the movement or accused the action with sectarianism, divisiveness, separatism, etc… One response to these claims:

The movement was not divided. Since I don't stand with white anarchists and they never stood with me, the action did nothing to divide the so-called movement. That is, unless of course you're referring to the white anarchist movement. If so, that is not a movement I am a part of. Perhaps you are suggesting then that the white anarchist movement is now torn between those who at least acknowledge their role in white supremacy to some degree and those who vehemently deny their privilege and oppressive behavior? I'm not sure the action can take such credit; but regardless, it still remains to be seen whether those acknowledging their relationship to white supremacy will do anything about it. If they are unwilling, as those who pay white privilege and racism lipservice have for some time now, the tear or division in the (white) "movement" is a farse.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

SAWB2: 15 Points of Clarification

Smack A White Boy Round II: CrimethInc. Eviction

Facts, Questions, General Clarifications, and Opinion

A lot of the same shit is being said and circulated via friend circles, throughout the interwebs, and beyond. I have written this fifteen point list to kind of organize, acknowledge, and respond to some of the questions that are being brought up, and to make available facts and clarifications that can (but won’t necessarily) clear up many misunderstandings and misrepresentations.

  1. There’s no such thing as reverse racism.
  2. Racism is not always overt and white supremacy is not synonymous with skinheads or nazis.
  3. The point and purpose of the action was not to dialog with anyone, least of all white people. This says nothing necessary about the willingness or desire of the participants to dialog with or relate to white people in general.
  4. Not all of the participants hate all white people. In fact, at least three of the core participants and at least four of all poc participants have white partners.
  5. White people that played the role of ally in the action were not and are not apoc slaves. They understood the importance of the action and were motivated to participate for reasons they arrived to through their own autonomy. White allies of the action either have or will be releasing their reportbacks. Please refer to these for more information.
  6. While apocistas in the action worked together to achieve the collective goal of evicting the crimethincers, statements said during the action were made autonomously by individual apocers without the intention of representing the whole group (and certainly not all of apoc).
  7. Three of the eight apoc who participated in the action were from apoc philly. No other participants were from apoc philly. Apoc Philly did not itself pre-plan or organize the action. No one from Apoc Philly took a leadership role over other core participants.
  8. The action was motivated by more than concerns about gentrification. Regardless of one’s analysis of gentrification, the reality is that the convergence disrespected surrounding communities. The poc in Garfield for example were not consulted and did not consent to the convergence happening where it did. This author is outraged that white people don’t take community consent seriously, and that in all the responses to SAWB2, a predominate reaction is for white people and some poc to defensively focus on the gentrification question, instead of acknowledging that people and communities were disrespected and their consent was violated. The document collectively released by the action organizers can be referred to for more non-gentrification based reasons the convergence needed to end that Friday.
  9. Is it appropriate for white people to criticize tactics used in this action, even though the action was a proactive response to legitimate grievances? It is the opinion of the author that this is NOT appropriate and actually rather egregious, and telling of the quickness with which white people will sidestep addressing their past and ongoing crimes.
  10. Contrary to account 1 in the alternate reportback: white people chose to block doorways and attempted to reclaim bags being moved into the hallway BEFORE any people of color did so. White people resisting the action were NOT following the lead of poc.
  11. Is being yelled at inherently abuse? It is the opinion of the author that being yelled at CAN be abuse. That said, when one takes into account the power dynamics and structural oppression of white supremacy, I find it hard to call what took place at the CrimethInc. convergence abuse. I hear a lot about the eviction being traumatic and triggering for white people there; yet, there seems to be little understanding of the day to day experience, the day to day trauma and the regular triggering that is the normal experience of many people of color. To those who fixate on their own and others trauma from the eviction, I implore you to step outside of yourself for a second and to gain some perspective on the matter.
  12. Contrary to other accounts, no apocista participating in the action entered the first floor being “violent.” The author left the second floor space looking for their action partner, was met by unwarranted resistance, and was almost pushed down the stairs. The author then entered the first floor and was immediately met with aggression from two crimethinc organizers, one of which was a white male, and two other white males. The author was not at that point moving bags or other possessions but merely looking for their partner. The aggression used against the author was unnecessary and any forced used by the author was in self-defense. The author deescalated the situation by leaving the space once they had determined that their action partner was not on the first floor. Yes, I repeat, a) crimethinc organizers and male bodied attendees unnecessarily initiated a physical confrontation with the author on the first floor and b) the author was NOT forced out of the space but chose to leave.
  13. Why was the safety of other marginalized groups not attended to? It is the opinion of this author that white people who are queer, trans, womyn identified, youth, etc. need to be cared for by the white community. If the white anarchists at the convergence stand against the oppression of their own, they will attend to the safety of those that need it. It was not the responsibility of any poc to do so. Contrary to popular belief, it is radically different for a poc to be queer than for a whitey. I have little in common with queer whitey; our struggles are NOT the same.
  14. Why were other poc not talked to before the action? The action was carried out by an autonomous group. Only poc who the action organizers had previously met were let in on the plan. The reality is that security culture is inherently alienating. This is necessary. You don’t let people who aren’t down and/or aren’t going to participate in on an action plan. The author regrets not having more direct conversations with certain poc that were there for much of the convergence; but even if that had happened, they would most likely not have been let in on the action plan. Most if not nearly all of the poc that were not let in on the action plan have relationship(s) to white anarchists making them unwilling to confront white supremacy in the way we had planned. One poc was friends with the crimethinc organizers. Another two were organizers themselves. At least two more defended crimethinc. Others had conflicting feelings. Also, one poc had just arrived the other night and had not even heard the controversy about this convergence and its location. I repeat that only people we previously knew were contacted.
  15. Just because white punx fly the flag of anarchism on their identity pole does not mean they have a common struggle with apoc. We are NOT all in it together.

I see this action as representing an unmasking of the (white) “movement” for its upholding of white supremacy. I see this action as a rallying cry for all those in opposition to come together, resist, and build alternatives.

With FiRE,

Kilwaii aka KW (kay-dub)

queer, trans, autonomous, anti-authoritarian, anarchist, black, brown, and mad as hell.

Monday, August 3, 2009

True Colors: An Open Reply to Food Not Bombs and Those Who Defend It


Well not really. The online shit-storm that has ensued (mostly on and facebook) following release of the "Open Letter to Food Not Bombs" was to be expected. When the oppressed stop playing nice, stop accepting their oppression, stop waiting for whitey to change, stop suppressing their anger, comment after comment the oppressor shows their true colors.

Many of you seem to grossly misunderstand the apoc identity/tendency/movement. I don't pretend to fully grasp it myself, but one thing I do know for sure is that apoc is not a homogeneous group or a singular organization. I am an autonomous, anti-authoritarian, anarchist person of color. Did you miss or misunderstand the adjective autonomous? I am no more or less apoc than any other, and I represent no one but myself. I do, however, stand with many other poc who feel as I do.

Some of you seem to think that white supremacy equals neo-nazis. I encourage you to remove your blinders. Please read.* Note that I've only gone to the trouble of including a link because some people identifying themselves as people of color* have repeated the colonizer's narrow view of white supremacy as reducible to and synonymous with the KKK, neo-nazis, etc... I would think the simple fact that the FBI recognizes the KKK as a terrorist organization would be sufficient for people proclaiming to be anarchists to question only seeing these types as white supremacists. Then again, I shouldn't be too surprised---a deeper view of white supremacy would mean many within the mainstream anarchist movement are white supremacists, and for those poc with this same view, many work with white supremacists. The narrow view is designed to make white supremacy hidden. We must not only decolonize our communities and our lands, but also our minds.

To those who were twitching and flinching at the tone of the Open Letter and could not stomach the anger it conveyed, forgive me for being outraged. Some question my intentions. Let me make them clear. I did not write the open letter to spark discussion. White people do enough talking. Furthermore, the fact that some are so "pissed off" is very telling. White people and even some poc will defend white supremacy and colonization in whatever way they see fit. This defense is to be expected and I did not choose their tactics for them. And to the white people that don't agree with my "polemical approach," who are you to set the terms and conditions upon which I am to speak?

Some have begun seemingly constructive discussions about what should happen to Food Not Bombs. Time will tell whether these discussions are genuine. One person wrote: " Are we attempting to inspire FNB chapters to disband/reform as more effective, truely radical groups?" My intention was NOT to be inspirational. I DO however call for the disbanding of all FNB chapters that are not poc-run. Community garden projects? A few people mentioned them as an alternative to or an alternative direction for FNB (and yes, I am aware that some fnb chapters put effort into such projects). I am all for poc-led community garden projects. However, if white people are going to participate at all in such projects, it needs to be by invitation only, period. White people need to stop inserting themselves in communities they don't belong in, and stop imposing their agendas on people of color. Do-gooder whities, please, get the fuck off my block.

To those who caution against wasting time critiquing food not bombs, white supremacy needs to be called out wherever it is (i.e. EVERYWHERE). I warn you, those who hide their white supremacy behind the mask of the "movement" are particularly dangerous.

To those who gendered me (and other participants in the CrimethInc. Eviction) in their comments, I resist your linguistic violence. I am not a "he." Take your gender binary and shove it. Fuck you.

Finally, someone asked that if I have a problem with white people I should just say so, instead of attacking Food Not Bombs. Newsflash: I DO have a problem with white people. I will always have a problem with the oppressor. The thing is, how could I then not also have a problem with FNB? FNB is after all a white dominated movement. White people generally, and Food Not Bombs specifically, anger me. My anger is legitimate, and I will not wait for whitey to validate it.

That said, and without further ado, those who foolishly assume that I hate all white people, and those white people that foolishly ask "what do I do then, since I can't change my skin color?" read this: Response to Comments on The Letter to Food Not Bombs. Oh my, a white person wrote that! What can you do? Shut up and listen. Get the fuck out of poc communities and give up power. You have no entitlement.

- Kilwaii aka KW (kay-dub)

queer, trans, autonomous, anti-authoritarian, anarchist, black, brown, and mad as hell.

"how do we challenge oppression by just transferring power to another group?"

"FNB has nothing to do with white supremacy, and your argument that it does doesn't hold any water, to say the least. In fact, your argument is in a sense racist. Youre stereotyping against those who SHARE and not STEAL. I am white and I happen to be priveledged, so therefore I use this as a means to work with those who are not (and sometimes are) priveledged, and now there are lunatics like you who say that the FNB movement is racist. It seems like you are more apt to consider 'white people' the enemy, when you should instead consider the large gap in your logic."

"I've met both founders of FNB; it has NOTHING to do with white supremacy"

"The motherfuckin truth: Oppression sees no color, It fucks us all."

"after reading a few of the posts they put out on websites like this I was sure I would be chased out for looking to pale. " (poc)

"Yup those guilt-ridden college kids who admit they come from privileged backgrounds which they openly criticize really are a huge threat to POC in America." (sarcastically said by a poc)

"Got a problem with racism, go do something about it. There's no use appealing to other marginalized activists to come suck your cock for being born a POC." (poc)

"I like doing Food Not Bombs for the sole purpose of feeding hungry people. I like that hungry people get food. It is good for them. I don't care whether or not it "counts" as revolutionary." (poc)

"Go fuck yourself and die so we can start making sure food doesn't get wasted on loud-mouthed self-righteous pricks who could care less about the homeless and everyone else who benefits from bottom-up food distribution. You are not pro-working class and you sure as hell aren't speaking in my name you racist fool." (poc)

"it doesn't make any goddamn sense to chastise folks for invalidating experiences and then respond with the exact same behavior. white, black or brown, i'm not especially interested in engaging with leftists or essentialists."

"essentialist platformism"

"Seriously Kay-dub have you ever met a white-supremacist?"

" if you have a problem with white people just say it, don't hide it behind the guise of hating FNB"

"why not get black people to show up at FNBs mtgs and change the groups?"

"I got was "Fuck whitey, fuck EVERY whitey" and that's hardly something I can stand behind seeing as how I can't change my fucking skin color"

no one is forcing anyone to eat their food...if the people who go to their picnics feel that way i would like to hear it from them"

"its sad that writer cant express more of an opinion on the situation in sudan, south darfur, and nigeria..but i guess bitching about a group that try's to do something by giving back food in community is where the real argument if, if you don't wan't their food..dont eat it, but try explaining that to the people who go to those picnics for food."

* Note that I intentionally included the writings of a white anarchist. This was not to validate the idea that white people are the authority on anything (cuz they ain't), but to point out that at least some white people understand some of what's up. That said, I take issue with Chris Crass's perpetuation of the idea that white people can be anti-racist. They cannot. Please read: "The White Anti-Racist is an Oxymoron" and for a poc voice defining racism:

* As was pointed out by several people on the web, it is easy to misrepresent oneself on the internet. For lack of a better option, I am assuming that those claiming to be poc indeed are persyns of color.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Open Letter to Food Not Bombs