Don’t ever take a fence down until you know the reason it was put up.
G. K. Chesterton
In 1949, a delegation of Native Americans went to Capitol Hill to discuss their conditions with lawmakers. After meeting with Vice President Alben Barkley, the Sioux leader Chief Ben American Horse said to the Barkley, "Be careful with your immigration policies; we were careless with ours."
All kinds of indigenous movements draw their inspiration from the Zapatistas, using direct action to secure their rights. Nearly three hundred indigenous families, more than a thousand people, have occupied a large tract of land near the center of the city since last June. In 2009, they first invaded the land, which once housed the National Indigenous Institute (INI), a government body dedicated to helping indigenous people. The governor of Chiapas convinced them to leave after signing documents promising to give them housing elsewhere. When he did not fulfill his promise, they returned.
Distinguished professor, activist and theorist, David Harvey was invited to speak at the 10th annual Ric Pfeffer Memorial Lecture series on his new book, Rebel Cities: From the Right to the City to the Urban Revolution. Known for his theoretical work on "historical-geographical materialism", and his sharp critique and analysis on neoliberalism, Dr. Harvey focused his lecture on the dynamics and resistance against the dominance of finance capital.
The Occupy movement is many things; on one hand, it is a mass movement of protest and occupation, on the other a cultural phenomenon producing countless small projects, affinity groups, and organizing efforts. Baltimore's Luminous Intervention, a combination of performance, projection, street art, and storytelling launched by a new collective called Greenpants, is of the latter.
This past week the City of Baltimore denied a permit request submitted by Occupy Baltimore to maintain their now two-month-old encampment at McKeldin Square. The denial was sent by letter from Gregory Bayor, director of the Department of Recreation and Parks, prohibiting the request to remain at the inner harbor site legally through to April 2012.
Indyreader caught up with community activist, Reverend Heber Brown, at the end of the Stop the Youth Jail march this last Tuesday. He spoke on some of Baltimore's fundamental issues that the majority of the city's population faces, as well as positives and potential challenges that the growing Occupation Movement may have within the city.
On August 1st, a caravan of several hundred Central American migrants, family members of disappeared migrants, and migrant rights activists arrived in Mexico City to denounce Mexican authorities for their indifference and lack of action to protect undocumented migrants from organized crime, kidnapping, sexual abuse and murder.
In 2009, The Baltimore Development Cooperative, Red Emma's, and the Indypendent Reader organized a conference on grasroots responses to urban injustice called The City From Below, which kicked off with a presentation by radical geographer and ex-Baltimorean David Harvey. In his talk, he revisited his classic 1991 essay "A View From Federal Hill," which appeared for the first time in the Baltimore Book, and which presented a still essential overview of the way in which private interests had shaped the public urban landscape of Baltimore City. For the City From Below, David Harvey updated his analysis in light of two more decades of development and the global financial crisis which began in 2008, presenting this all to a rapt crowd gathered on Federal Hill itself and overlooking the neoliberal city. We're happy to make available, after a string of amazing technical difficulties, the video from that talk available here.
Luz Rivera de la organizacion - Consejo Nacional Urbano Campesino (CNUC) basada en Tlaxcala México - Platicó en el espacio comunitario/ colectivo, Red Emma's en Baltimore, MD, EUA. Ella habló sobre la historia de la organización, de sus luchas, de lxs campesinxs en el centro de mexico, la lucha en contra del ‘mal gobierno' y sus partidos, y por la construcción de autonomía de la manera Tlaxcalteca.