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(en) US, NYC, Radical People of Color Take their Messages to the Streets by 30 Aug 2004

From Worker <a-infos-en@ainfos.ca>
Date Mon, 30 Aug 2004 21:25:12 +0200 (CEST)

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Hundreds of radical, anti-authoritarian, and anarchist people of
color marched as a contingent within the enormous United For
Peace and Justice march in New York City on August 29. The
informal bloc included individuals who identify as anarchist
people of color, some white allies, and many local community
groups. A high-spirited delegation of over fifty anti-imperialist
activists of color from the Bay Area named “Siafu”- a
Swahili name for an ant known to travel in swarms of up to 20
million and take down animals as large as elephants- flew in
from the Bay Area in California to collaborate in this week’s
mass protests of the Republican National Convention.

The atmosphere was festive and energized as activists clapped,
shouted, and sang while marching with over 250,000 people to
Madison Square Garden where the conventions are being held.

“Justice for the Third World now!
“Shout it out: Revolution! Enough is enough! The people
must rise up!”
“Bush! Get out!”

Tensions flared briefly when at least a dozen “protest
warriors”- right wing counter-protesters carrying signs
reading slogans such as “New York Welcomes the RNC.
Now Go F*@# Yourself!” pushed through the march,
dividing the bloc of people of color. Several antagonistic
individuals were verbally combative toward activists of color but
were quickly contained by other marchers and even the police.

“It’s important for us to be here in order to make the
point that as people of color we are most directly affected by
Republican policies of war both at home and abroad. In the US
we bear the brunt of cuts in funding for education, increased
militarism in our neighborhoods, as well as racist scapegoating of
immigrants. Abroad we fight against corporate globalization,
capitalism, and imperialism like we always have. We will
continue to fight for justice- and right now that begins with
ousting Bush from his illegitimate office,” commented one
young woman who chose not to give her name.

Many of the marchers - who organize with community groups
around issues ranging from queer liberation to tenant’s
rights, police brutality to healthcare - are also involved in the Still
We Rise coalition. Still We Rise represents over 35 organizations
that work day to day with and are led by poor people and people
of color to create tangible changes in their lives. The coalition
included New Yorkers who are homeless, living with HIV/AIDS,
struggling with the welfare system, and who have experienced
repressive drug laws and the criminal justice system. Still We
Rise will be marching on August 30.

See also:

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