Thursday, March 03, 2005

What is "action"?

While talking to Special Agent Morgan earlier, it became clear in my mind he was trying to determine just why I wanted information on the neo-Nazi rally. He wondered if I was a member of the ARA.

Nope. But what is the ARA? Well, turns out they're Anti-Racist Action...
Anti-Racist Action is an international movement of people dedicated to stopping racism, sexism, homophobia and other forms of bigotry from harming our communities. We work hard to "expose, oppose, and confront" hate in whatever form threatens the diversity and safety of the places we live in and the people we live with. We also firmly believe in building a fun, diverse, liberated and explicitly anti-racist, anti-sexist and anti-homophobic youth culture.
From my brief conversation with Special Agent Morgan, I think the emphasis of the ARA is the confrontation.

They have four "points of unity."
1) We go where they go: Whenever fascists are organizing or active in public, we're there. We don't believe in ignoring them or staying away from them. Never let the nazis have the street!

2) We don't rely on the cops or courts to do our work for us: This doesn't mean we never go to court. But we must rely on ourselves to protect ourselves and stop the fascists.

3) Non-Sectarian defense of other Anti-Fascists: In ARA, we have lots of different groups and individuals. We don't agree about everything and we have a right to differ openly. But in this movement an attack on one is an attack on us all. We stand behind each other.

4) We support abortion rights and reproductive freedom. ARA intends to do the hard work necessary to build a broad, strong movement against racism, sexism, anti-Semitism, homophobia, discrimination against the disabled, the oldest, the youngest and the most oppressed people. We want a classless society. WE INTEND TO WIN!
I'll not go point-by-point, but I will say this: we plan on staying away from both the Brownshirts and those who advocate violent direct-action.

And we ask you to join us (I promise you'll not get home visits from federal agents) on June 25th on the fields of the National Park at Yorktown for the Rally for Social Justice. We plan on a peaceful demonstration of positive values encompassing tolerance and social justice. No violence. No confrontation. Our direct action is direct action in positive means to positive ends.

Enough said. This conversation will pick up over at our Rally for Social Justice blog. Join me there.

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