‘Hey Rapists, Go Fuck Yourselves’: SlutWalk Arrives in NYC

From Alternet: http://www.alternet.org/story/152603/%27hey_rapists%2C_go_fuck_yourselves%27%3A_slutwalk_arrives_in_nyc/

A controversial grassroots anti-rape movement makes its way to New York, with style and substance on the streets of the Village.

By Sarah Seltzer and Lauren Kelley
October 3, 2011

Over much of the past year, the movement known as SlutWalk has been snaking its way through cities and towns around the world. Finally, with great fanfare, SlutWalk arrived in New York City this weekend, and we got to witness its provocative power firsthand.

SlutWalk originated in Toronto this April after a cop warned students “not to dress like sluts” to avoid getting raped. Since that first march, the movement has taken on a life of its own, pushing the idea that rapists, not short skirts, cause rape. The movement has been seen on campuses and streets throughout the Americas, Europe, Australia, and South Asia.

The power of the Internet to record these marches has enabled slogans, outfits, speeches and chants to go viral online and then pop up again in real life. Participants have glommed onto the most powerful and savvy messages from other SlutWalks, recreating them in their hometowns.

After months of the movement spreading this way, this past Saturday, October 1, Slutwalk NYC took to the appropriately diverse and countercultural streets of NYC’s East and West Village.

The march (and accompanying rally) couldn’t have come at a more critical moment for New York City anti-rape activists. Just days before SlutWalk NYC, the Washington Post reported that New York police officers were stopping women on the street in Brooklyn to shame them about their clothing choices, reportedly telling them they shouldn’t wear shorts or skirts because a rapist has been targeting women in the area. And there was this summer’s acquittal of the so-called New York City “rape cops,” who were accused of sexually assaulting a heavily intoxicated (and, for much of the evening, unconscious) woman they were supposed to be escorting home. The Dominique Strauss-Khan case has also been a focus for the NYC SlutWalk team.

Feminists, rape survivors, allies and supporters (according to organizers, the NYPD pegged attendance at 3,000) assembled first in Union Square, clad in everything from lingerie to hijabs to an oft-photographed Hester Prynne outfit. Illustrating that you really can wear whatever you want to SlutWalk, there was also a healthy representation of jeans and T-shirts at the event.

Continue reading at: http://www.alternet.org/story/152603/%27hey_rapists%2C_go_fuck_yourselves%27%3A_slutwalk_arrives_in_nyc/

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Who are the 99 percent?

From The Washington Post: http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/ezra-klein/post/who-are-the-99-percent/2011/08/25/gIQAt87jKL_blog.html

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I did everything I was supposed to and I have nothing to show for it.”

It’s not the arrests that convinced me that “Occupy Wall Street” was worth covering seriously. Nor was it their press strategy, which largely consisted of tweeting journalists to cover a small protest that couldn’t say what, exactly, it hoped to achieve. It was a Tumblr called, “We Are The 99 Percent,” and all it’s doing is posting grainy pictures of people holding handwritten signs telling their stories, one after the other.

“I am 20K in debt and am paying out of pocket for my current tuition while I start paying back loans with two part time jobs.”

These are not rants against the system. They’re not anarchist manifestos. They’re not calls for a revolution. They’re small stories of people who played by the rules, did what they were told, and now have nothing to show for it. Or, worse, they have tens of thousands in debt to show for it.

“I am a 28 year old female with debt that had to give up her apartment + pet because I have no money and I owe over $30,000.”

College debt shows up a lot in these stories, actually. It’s more insistently present than housing debt, or even unemployment. That might speak to the fact that the protests tilt towards the young. But it also speaks, I think, to the fact that college debt represents a special sort of betrayal. We told you that the way to get ahead in America was to get educated. You did it. And now you find yourself in the same place, but buried under debt. You were lied to.

Continue reading at:  http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/ezra-klein/post/who-are-the-99-percent/2011/08/25/gIQAt87jKL_blog.htm

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Ohh The RadFem Klan is Saying Mean Stuff About Me

So the irrelevant wankers over at Gender Trender are saying mean shit about me.

I think they expect me to be hurt and feel that my self esteem is being harmed.

Guess again.

I feel honored when a bunch of crazy Nazis attack me.

I’ve been attacked and bullied from the cradle and I’m an old woman now.  Do you really think my skin is so thin that your words can hurt me?

You people are pathetic jokes.

I don’t live in a world where you have an impact on me because I don’t give a shit about your incestuous little community of bigots.

I think your little music festival in the woods is pathetic and wouldn’t waste my time or money going there.

Your acceptance of me or hatred of me is irrelevant.

Just as you are irrelevant.

So excuse me…  I have a real movement of relevant people and actions to cover.

Greece turmoil triggers market panic

From The Global Post: http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/regions/europe/111004/greece-turmoil-triggers-market-panic

Default fears sent markets down as Europe dithers and Greece braces for unrest.

Ken Maguire
October 4, 2011

ATHENS, Greece — For the moment, the Greek government can’t seem to please anyone. And the pressure is mounting quickly.

Global financial markets plunged Tuesday on new fears of a Greek default. European markets lost between 2 and 4.5 percent by Tuesday afternoon. Bank stocks and Germany’s DAX led the drop.

Meanwhile, the troubled Mediterranean country braced for a massive strike Wednesday protesting austerity measures imposed to secure desperately needed international bailout funds.

Greece sparked new default concerns after revealing it would miss its deficit-reduction target. That revelation prompted European finance ministers Tuesday to delay signing off on more Greek aid.

Greece: “Don’t blame us” for Europe’s woes

The aid in question is an $11 billion installment of a $150 billion loan from European partners and the International Monetary Fund, initially negotiated in May 2010. A second loan of the same size was agreed to in June but is awaiting ratification.

If the $11 billion is not made available by mid-November, Greece says it will be unable to pay its bills, possibly leading to a disorderly default that could shake the global economy.

Continue reading at:  http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/regions/europe/111004/greece-turmoil-triggers-market-panic

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Why Environmentalists Should Occupy Wall Street

From The Huffington Post: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/phil-aroneanu/occupy-wall-street-environmentalists_b_994045.html

US Campaign Director, 350.org
October 4, 2011

“Go Paul!”

That’s what a top State Department official wrote in an email to the top lobbyist for TransCanada, a top tar sands oil producer, upon hearing that he had garnered support for the Keystone KL pipeline from a US Senator. That shouldn’t be too surprising, since the lobbyist was one of Hilary Clinton’s campaign aides during her presidential run. The cozy relationship between corporate lobbyists and decisionmakers isn’t anything new, but it’s just as despicable as ever. And with the Keystone XL pipeline issue, corporate America’s fingerprints are turning up all over the place.

That’s why over 1200 ordinary people from around the country took the extraordinarily courageous step of sitting-in and getting arrested at the White House in late August — to show President Obama and leaders on Capitol Hill that real people can be just as powerful as corporate interests. Will President Obama, who campaigned saying “I don’t take a dime of their [lobbyist] money, and when I am president, they won’t find a job in my White House,” be willing to push back against TransCanada, its Wall St. financiers, and the stranglehold these corporations have on our government, or will he be complicit in destroying our democracy, our land and our atmosphere?

Later on this year, when President Obama makes a decision whether to go forward with the tar sands pipeline, we’ll know where he stands. But the Occupy Wall Street protesters aren’t going to wait that long. The amount of energy that the Occupy Wall Street movement has generated so far is incredible. Over the course of two weeks, their numbers have ballooned from a few hundred to thousands, and Occupy movements have started up in dozens of other cities around the country and the world. Why? Because Americans are sick and tired of top officials cozying up to lobbyists, of political cronyism and petty corruption at the highest levels of government.

Complete article at:  http://www.huffingtonpost.com/phil-aroneanu/occupy-wall-street-environmentalists_b_994045.html

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Wall St. Anger: Protest pill for US democracy deficit disorder?

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Demonstrations, Arrests and Pre-Op or Transgender Status

I did some audaciously brave and crazy shit back in the period between 1969 and 1972 during the period when I was pre-op.

I was arrested during one of the People’s Park events for disorderly conduct.  I had to go to trila rather than plead and accept the 10 days in jail that most other demonstrators were taking because I was on hormones and was so in-between at that point the police treated me as neither male nor female.

Fortunately I was acquitted.

It should be very obvious where my sympathies are regarding the 99% and various Occupy demonstrations.

I’m an openly left wing anarchist. I support the demonstrators.  I think that it is a noble thing for people to stand up and put their bodies against the wheels of the machine when the operation of the machine has become so odious as to call out for resistance to the machine.

But I also consider it unconscionable to urge pre-op and transgender folks to endanger themselves by getting arrested without alerting them to the possibility that they will suffer special abuse at the hands of the police.

The good news about demonstration arrests.  You usually are not alone.  Often times there will be hundreds of you.  Often times you will never actual make it much further than the processing holding cell.  At that point, after being photographed, finger printed and checked for outstanding warrants you will be permitted to make bail.

You may be taken before a judge.  That is your arraignment.  There they will read the charges against you and ask how you plead, in many cases you will have been offered a small fine in exchange for a guilty plea.  Depending on the conditions you might consider taking it, particularly if you are from out of town, as the alternative may well require you to make court appearances on a regular basis for as long as a year.  If you choose to not plead guilty and go to trial, you face the risk of losing.

In the halls of justice all the justice is in the halls.  If you face trial it will not matter that you are on the side of the angels and the police are lying scum.  Also the liberal judge is somewhat of a myth.  Actually you will go through the same court machinery that has filled the prisons of America with people of color and has a ling history of harshly punishing dissidents.

You will not be offered as good a deal as you were when you were arraigned with all your fellow demonstrators.  If you go to trial and lose, you will in all likelihood be sentenced to jail time.

Things are much trickier if you are transgender or pre-op.  From the case that caused me to write this post pre-op specifically means genital SRS, not top surgery plus hormones for the guys.

The cops are rarely nice or respectful to transsexual and transgender people.  They are especially mean to and treat people whose genitals  do not match their gender of presentation in a degrading and abusive manner.


I never believed I should let being transsexual and pre-op stop me from standing up for what I believed in…

So I went to demonstrations.  Including as part of an action faction/black bloc.

You have to gauge for yourself the level of risk you are willing to take.

Have proper identification.  Write contact numbers on your arm with indelible magic marker because if you are arrested the police will take your phone and all other property while you are in custody.

Do not carry any weapons.  A demonstration is a demonstration, not a revolution.

Know the people close to you and watch out for each other, share names.  You may be called upon later to be a witness.

Don’t let the police box you in.  Never strike a police officer, remember you are part of a demonstration not a revolution.

Be careful of people who want to lead you to more violent actions or who advocate using weapons such as bombs or Molotov cocktails on the police.  Automatically assume people advocating such action are police until proven innocent.

Do not talk of the actions of others.  Never volunteer information regarding the actions of those who might be taking actions outside the realm of demonstration related activities.  Particularly if those actions are illegal.

Keep such knowledge to yourself.  Talking about such knowledge implies involvement, which could in turn lead to your being prosecuted.

By all means go…

These demonstrations are about issues that affect all of us.

Just be careful.  Avoid arrest if you are in a vulnerable place in your life.  Keep moving, avoid illegal actions and don’t antagonize the cops.  Don’t get boxed in and stay on the sidewalks.

From Think Progress:  http://thinkprogress.org/lgbt/2011/10/04/335270/transgender-protester-police-mistreatment/

Starvation And Humiliation: A Transgender Protester’s Account Of Mistreatment By The NYPD

By Zack Ford on Oct 4, 2011 at 10:45 am

Justin Adkins found out the hard way that the New York Police Department does not have a protocol for how to treat transgender people when they are arrested. Adkins, who serves as assistant director of the Multicultural Center at Williams College in Massachusetts, was participating in an Occupy Wall Street protest this weekend on the Brooklyn Bridge. When he was arrested, he informed one of the protest’s legal observers that he was transgender, and that is when the disrespect began. In a detailed statement, Justin describes his alleged mistreatment, including being handcuffed to a handrail next to a toilet for eight hours, being denied food when others received it, and being humiliated by police officers:

Throughout the night it became clear that they wanted my fellow protestors to think that I did something criminally wrong. That I had done something different from them. That I was not just a peaceful protestor exercising my rights on that bridge. That I deserved to be handcuffed to a railing in the side of the precinct with violent criminals. Everyone seemed to wonder why I had been separated. When other officers chatted amongst themselves about why I was separated, one officer suspected aloud that I was a “ringleader.” The woman officer stood a few times outside the glass wall with the door open as male officers asked about me. It appeared that she told them that I was transgender as they gawked, giggled, and stared at me. This was embarrassing and humiliating. Only I have the right to out myself as a transgender person. She was using my identity to get a laugh with men who she thought would find me curious and freakish. It felt at these times that I was behind the glass of a freakshow where people could come look at the funny transgender guy. I decided that when they looked at me giggling I would just catch them off guard and wave. It at least made the time go by.

If there were any question that the NYPD has been treating protesters inappropriately, this is certainly an important case study to consider. Please read Justin’s full statement to appreciate how the experience of being transgender can compromise the respect a person receives.

Watch video of the 70 arrests that took place on the Brooklyn Bridge (Justin’s arrest can be seen at around the 10:30 mark):