Are you looking for a DIY underground music festival hidden in an abandoned army fort accessible only by boat? Us too! It’s word of mouth only — not promoted on-line since there’s no permits. If you wanna go, you’ll have to get to know some of the folks at your local all-ages venue, artists warehouse, free store, or radical library. Those who value joy and freedom more than the conformity and monotony of the rat race are coming together to make our own reality — and we want you here with us. Here’s some new spaces we’ve heard about as well as updates to the Radical Contact List in the 2023 Slingshot organizer. Please let us know if you hear about spaces we should include. There’s even more info on-line at slingshotcollective.org.
Rhizome House – Cleveland, OH
A new radical social center. 2174 Lee Road Cleveland Heights, OH 44118 rhizomehouse.org
Paperhand Puppet Intervention – Saxapahaw, NC
They put on social change-promoting giant puppet shows similar to Bread & Puppet. 6079 Saxapahaw Swepsonville Rd. Saxapahaw, NC 27340 919-923-1857 paperhand.org
Three Nations Market – Ajo, AZ
A non-profit maker space and market with a tool Library to promote upcycling and crafts. 20 West Brisa Street, Ajo, AZ 85321 520-270-2185 3nations.business.site
Humanitarian Aid Office – Ajo, AZ
The Ajo Samaritans provide humanitarian aid like water in the US/Mexico borderlands. “We also engage with our community and collaborative groups to raise awareness of the systemic causes of death and suffering of travelers near the US/Mexico border.” The Aid office is open open Fridays and Saturdays 9am to noon. 321 N Taladro Street, Ajo, AZ 85321 ajosamaritans.com
PLAC – Ljubljana, Slovenia
An autonomous zone in a squatted, abandoned cafeteria that features weekly vegan diners, a library, lectures, musical and theatre performances, aikido and ju-jitsu practice. PLAC means place and is short for Participatory Autonomous Zone of Ljubljana. 43 Linhartova Street, behind Bežigrad.
Biblio>media:take – Vienna, Austria
A bookshop and library that presents workshops and classes. The previously mobile infoshop now has a permanent location at culturenter 4lthangrund – open when there are events. Augasse 2-6, 1090 Wien, Austria. infoladen.kukuma.org, 4lthangrund.jetzt
Lots of spaces in France
Our contact in France emailed a bunch of new spaces there, but narrowly missed the deadline to have them included in the printed version of the organizer. Here they are:
• Le Kiosk 36 Rue Danielle Casanova, 31000 Toulouse
• Imprimerie Anarchiste l’Impatience 43 boulevard Pardigon, 13004 Marseille
• Le Chat Noir 124 Rue de Negreneys, 31200 Toulouse
• Lokal Autogéré 7 Rue Pierre Dupont, 38000 Grenoble
• le 102 102 Rue d’Alembert, 38000 Grenoble
• la Turbine 3, rue des Cheminots, Toulouse
• Local Piquemil 6 Rue Piquemil 31300 Toulouse
Corrections to the 2023 Organizer
• We left South Bend Commons at 1799 Lakewood Terrace SE, Atlanta, GA 30315 off the list but they still exist.
• We left Center for Rural Livelihoods at 80574 Hazelton Rd. Cottage Grove, OR 97424 541-942-8198 off the list.
• We left Food Forest at 889 Camino Del Sur, Isla Vista, CA 93117 off the list. Its a project of the ecoVistaCommunity that promotes eco-justice with a zine and a bunch of projects. ecovistacommunity.com
- duckduckgo.com – Search engine
- yewtu.be & invidious.weblibre.org – Fully-functional YouTube without ads or trackers
- Firefox – open-source, privacy focused non-profit browser (instead of Chrome, Safari, Edge)
- pad.riseup.net – Basic Google Docs equivalent
- cryptpad.fr – Encrypted forms, docs, etc.
- libgen.fun – free books
- search.openverse.engineering – search Creative Commons-licensed images and sounds
If you’re tired of going to work every day and not getting the respect and treatment you deserve, maybe you need a union. It’s not as hard as you think to organize. Here are some tips:
• Start by talking to just one or two coworkers about unionizing. If you already have a close relationship with your coworkers, and you trust them to not say anything to management, then you can ask them what they think about forming a union.
• If you don’t know your coworkers well, then start by getting to know them. Talk with them, hang out with them, help them out with the day-to-day difficulties on the job. When you’re ready, start talking to them about work. Ask them what they like about the job and what they don’t like. A lot of people want to avoid being a complainer, so they might not want to say anything negative about work. Go ahead and share some of your frustrations about the job — this gives them permission to go there, and gets them thinking about their own personal complaints.
• Make sure to listen. Ask questions and listen to your coworkers more than you talk. You will accomplish a lot more by listening than by talking. You have two ears and one mouth — listen twice as much as you talk.
• After you hear what they want to change, then ask how they think you can accomplish that? Can one of you make that change on your own, by just going and asking management to change? What about if all the workers together combine their power to make change happen? Well, that is a union. Once you have a few coworkers who want to unionize, you can get started.
• Keep your organizing secret until you and your coworkers are ready to be public with your union. Once the company finds out you are organizing, it is much harder to talk with your coworkers.
• Contacting an experienced Union Organizer can make a tremendous difference in coaching you how to inspire your coworkers and in taking the right steps to build a strong union. Being connected to an established union brings you a lot more power than you will have on your own.
• Don’t rush the process. It is a common mistake to try to move faster and get to the next step as soon as possible. You have to build up your power to create an effective union, and if you try to move forward before you have the power you need, you will lose.
• The company will fight your union — they always do. No boss wants to give up all the control they have over you, over the money, and over the workplace. You need to talk with all your coworkers about what to expect when the company starts to fight you. You all need to “inoculate” yourself so you are prepared when they start their campaign of fear tactics, misinformation, or manipulation.
• The company will say a union is a “third party” intruding on the work place. They will ask you to give them another chance to fix all their mistakes before you decide to unionize. They will use legal maneuvers and NLRB hearings to slow down the process in the hope that you lose your spirit and quit your job. It’s illegal for them to punish anyone or even ask anyone about their support for a union, but they will do it anyway because the law is stacked in their favor. Don’t be surprised if your supervisor starts crying in front of you about how they feel betrayed and they just didn’t know about all the problems and they promise they’ll work on making it better. The way to overcome all the employer’s tactics is to have strong relationships in place
There is much more to the process, but once you join with your coworkers and begin to form an organizing committee, you are on your way. Organizing a powerful union will require you to develop your own individual power, and that alone makes it worth it. Multiply that for your coworkers, and you can make change that lasts the rest of your lives.
Good sex is an act of mutual aid. Every person, regardless of gender, is responsible for contributing to the well-being and pleasure of their partners and themselves. We must explore and know our own desires and learn to speak them. We must hear and respond to the desires of our partners (even if that means accepting refusal gracefully). This means finding the words to express how we like to be touched, spoken to, tied up, and cuddled. Getting explicit permission, however vulnerable and scary it may seem, is a great turn-on. What better than knowing your partner really likes it when you touch them that way, talk in that voice, or use that prop? What is better than knowing you can ask for anything, and it will at least be considered respectfully? There is no way that we or our relationships can grow if we don’t find safe spaces in which to explore.
If you have never spoken during sex, or asked permission, or blurted out your desires, feel free to start small. Most people hear compliments well, and appreciate encouraging suggestions. However, it’s equally important to discover the boundaries of your comfort (often situational) and speak them as well. Starting off with a “this feels so good” or “I love it when you…” or “I’d like you to spend the night if you’re interested” is fantastically brave. If you’re not there, work on moaning—just get yourself vocal. Steady yourself for disappointment (and delight), and enjoy the benefits of good communication. Often, people’s boundaries are related to past experience, and creating a safer “right now” can help some people open up closed doors. There is no implicit consent to touch someone’s genitals because you have kissed them, or to have intercourse because you’ve had oral sex. If your partner tenses up or cries or is unresponsive, it’s really important to stop, check in, and support what they need. Be honest about any risk factors you bring, such as sexually transmitted infections, whether you have unprotected sex with other people, and if you have allergies to glycerin or spermicide (in lube) or latex. Details make all the difference.
It’s also important that we take care of our community and help out our friends. At the very least, we should directly check in with them about what they want and expect, and possibly act to get them to a place of lower risk. It’s also important to confront people (in a supportive way) who act aggressively, because they may not understand that what they are doing is possibly assault. They are either okay with what they are doing, or don’t believe there’s anything wrong with it.
While being so direct about sex is outside of most norms, it transforms sexual experiences. When we are sure that we agree with our partners about expectation and desire, there is no fear to distract us—only pleasure and humor. It’s much less pressure to offer someone a choice (“Would you like to come home with me or would you rather hang out here?”) than a request (“Would you come home with me tonight?”). If we allow for slow and comfortable intimacy, we are likely to experience it more fully and joyfully.
So, if you are often the initiator of your sexual experiences, experiment with patience and let someone else take the lead. Even if it means being alone more often, you may find you enjoy yourself more when you have partners. If you are less likely to initiate sex, think of ways you could safely ask for intimacy. Having the support of friends could make it easier to approach that really great someone.
It’s our responsibility to create new sexual expectations based on good communication that not only reduce the likelihood of sexual assault, but affirm that sex is normal and necessary. This begins with teaching children healthy ideas about their bodies and believing people when they share stories of sexual assault. Consider it turning on the lights. There are endless ways for us to end our internal oppression and explore healthy, better sex.
Sometimes the message for spray painting a banner is obvious: Fuck the police! Stop the war! Land Back!
But putting these wonderful slogans into practice is harder. We need more clear, accurate, and actionable information! Instead, we’re surrounded by firehoses – social streams and mainstream screens – of misleading information and outright lies.
This is no accident. Corporate-owned or foundation-funded media can’t speak to our everyday lives under an unforgiving regime of landlords, employers, police, and government agencies. Big spenders can buy up ads, plant hundreds of tweets in the hope one goes viral, or – when all else fails – send in the cops to bust something up.
When we pick up false or misleading information, it can really damage our work. It can confuse who or what we are fighting, and set our demands and efforts shooting off in the wrong direction. Misinformation makes movements insular, as core members adopt the party line while those outside write it off as delusional or walk away due to an inflexible status quo.
To stay grounded in reality, we have to start local and unplug from social media when shaping our thinking.
When done wrong, finding the “truth” can mean aligning with the settler media, NGOs, and corporations that have defined it for so long. Truths seem to only get considered as such if written in the colonists’ language. Fuck that! Get the truth from the streets, the trees, the rivers and oceans, and the people. De-gentrify and de-colonize our thinking. Go deep and touch what’s real.
That’s powerful. This is what the people in power are trying to take away from us – by separating us from knowledge of the earth, sending us to schools which prepare us only for a lifetime of work, and keeping our grubby hands out of the air-conditioned archives.
Here are some tips for getting up to your knees in information:
- Hit the books. Go to a free library, community center, or archive. Talk to the staff or volunteers. Read old newspapers, look at photographs, and check out relevant books. Sometimes you may encounter barriers dealing with pretentious archives, or be disgusted by a relentless focus on white settlers or powerful men. But often in the archives (sometimes only by reading between the lines) you’ll find glimmers of people like yourself – hungry for change.
- Make a public information request. Many government agencies are required to provide their emails, contracts, and other internal documents to anybody upon request. Some are more cooperative than others, and you may find yourself stonewalled if you hit a hot button issue. But generally, they are responsive and you may learn something from the results. Expose their plans, and avoid their co-optation strategies.
- Get the numbers. Data is often manipulated by those who have resources. Because our society collects such an incredible volume of data, people can often cherry-pick data points which are favorable to their goals. But oftentimes, we can go into these same data sets and find other trends which disprove their narrative – or learn something that might change our approach. Get out your bullshit meter and try to find somebody who knows their way around a spreadsheet.
- Search academia. Academic articles are notoriously dense and hard to understand, but often times someone has already done great footwork for you – it’s just buried in an obscure journal or master’s thesis! See if your local public university has a free computer where you can search catalogs and download PDFs, or talk to a reference librarian.
- Ask the streets. There’s nobody better to ask than someone who’s lived it.
Learning a lot? Consider writing it down in a place that others can read and which can be edited later. One problem with making a Twitter thread is it gets lost, probably never to re-surface, and it can’t be updated as you find out new information.
You can set-up a free blog on WordPress.com, Home.Blog, or an activist equivalent such as NoBlogs. You can organize your thoughts into posts on specific topics. An added bonus of this method is that it will surface in search results when people type in whatever you are organizing around.
That’s just a start. Get organized and liberate the knowledge!
People with uteruses have a fundamental right to decide “if, when, and how” to get and be pregnant or have a child — whether we live in one of the states where it is now illegal, or if we’re in a free state. We don’t have to face these new, repressive laws alone. Networks are forming to help fund, transport and shelter people who must leave their state to seek abortions elsewhere. Help out if you can. Join a mutual aid network or form your own! Here are a couple examples: midwestaccesscoalition.org abortionfunds.org
Do you need an abortion?
If you’re 11 weeks pregnant or less, you can take Plan C pills (misoprostol only, or both mifepristone and misoprostol). Depending on how far along you are in your pregnancy, Plan C is 87-98% effective. Plan C pills are available by mail in discrete packaging, and their effects are identical to spontaneous miscarriage so emergency hospital care, if necessary, won’t reveal that you have taken Plan C.
If it has been more than 11 weeks since the first day of your last period, you must have a safe in-clinic abortion to end your pregnancy in states were it is still legal.
People need to terminate their pregnancies every day, for a whole host of reasons. Reproductive justice, like so many other issues, disproportionately impacts BIPOC folks, low-income folks, and other marginalized identities. Having an abortion is safer than childbirth — planning for a child reduces family stress and increases resources available.
While we’re in this latest moment of crisis, dozens of organizations are providing information, funding, and access to safe abortions.
While this list is far from complete, here are some national (US) resources that provide Plan C and/or in-clinic abortions:
Bedsider Birth Control Support Network – information on birth control, sexual wellness, and abortion
Handbook for a Post-Roe America – along with a handbook you can order, this site also has a national map that lists local clinics, reproductive justice and rights groups, practical support and abortion funding groups.
Indigenous Women Rising Abortion Fund – specifically for Indigenous/Native American people in the US and Canada
I Need An A – connects individuals to reproductive resources with an emphasis on privacy
National Abortion Federation – directory of providers and funding
National Latina Institute for Reproductive Justice – serving Latina/x individuals seeking reproductive healthcare
National Network of Abortion Funds – connects people to clinics and funding
Plan C Pills – provides information and a national (US) directory of where to find abortion pills
Planned Parenthood -the nation’s largest women’s healthcare provider. provides pregnancy and STI testing, counseling, and reproductive healthcare for men and women.
Abortion funds in the American South:
Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Mississippi, South Carolina, and Tennessee:
Arkansas Abortion Support Network
A Fund, Inc.
New Orleans Abortion Fund
North and South Carolina:
Carolina Abortion Fund
Avow and Lilith Fund
Blue Ridge Abortion Fund
Holler Health Justice
These suggestions from the National Lawyers Guild “Know Your Rights” guide summarize the rules to which the police are theoretically subject. However be careful: the police, the courts, and the government can and do ignore these rules when they feel like it. Sometimes, police retaliate against people for exercising their rights. These tips may help you later on in court, and sometimes they won’t. But even though the state can’t be counted on to follow its own laws, it still may be helpful to know what these laws are so you can shame particular state agents or deal with particular situations. Always use your best judgment — if you aren’t doing anything wrong, there may be no reason to be excessively paranoid or escalate a potentially innocent and brief encounter with a police officer who is just saying “hi” into an ugly situation by acting suspicious and refusing to say “hi” back. The point is to avoid giving information.
Providing this information isn’t intended to scare you into inactivity or make you paranoid. Even in the current context, the vast majority of radical projects proceed with no interference from the police. The police hassle and arrest people because they hope that such repression will frighten the population into submission. We can take reasonable precautions while continuing the fight for liberation.
Never Talk to the Police
Anything you say to an FBI agent or cop may be used against you and other people — even if the questions seem routine or harmless. You don’t have to talk to FBI agents, police or investigators on the street, if you’ve been arrested, or if you’re in jail. (Exceptions: Your name, date of birth and address are known as “Booking questions” which are not included in your right to remain silent. Also, in some states you can get an additional minor charge for refusing to identify yourself after a police stop based on reasonable suspicion). Only a judge has the authority to order you to answer questions. Many activists have refused to answer questions, even when ordered by a judge or grand jury, and subsequently served jail time to avoid implicating others. It is common for the FBI to threaten to serve you with a grand jury subpoena unless you talk to them. Don’t be intimidated. This is frequently an empty threat, and if they are going to subpoena you, they will do so anyway. If you do receive a subpoena, call a lawyer right away.
Once you’ve been stopped or arrested, don’t try to engage cops in a dialogue or respond to accusations. If you are nervous about simply refusing to talk, you may find it easier to tell them to contact your lawyer. Once a lawyer is involved, the police sometimes back off. Even if you have already answered some questions, you can refuse to answer other questions until you have a lawyer. Don’t lie to the police or give a false name— lying to the police is a crime. However, the police are allowed to lie to you — don’t believe what they say. If you’ve been arrested, don’t talk about anything sensitive in police cars, jail cells or to other inmates — you are probably being recorded.
What To Do About Police Harassment On The Street
If the police stop you on the street, ask, “Am I free to go?” If yes, walk away. If not, you are being detained but this does not necessarily mean you will be arrested. Ask, “Can you explain why you are detaining me?” To stop you, cops must have specific reasons to suspect you of involvement in a specific crime. Police are entitled to pat you down during a detention. If the police try to further search you, your car, or your home, say repeatedly that you do not consent to the search, but do not physically resist.
What To Do If Police Visit Your Home
You do not have to let the FBI or police into your home or office unless they have a search warrant. If they have an arrest warrant you may limit entry if the person surrenders outside. In either case, ask to inspect the warrant. It must specifically describe the place to be searched and the things to be seized. You do not have to tell them anything other than your name and address. Tell the police that you can not consent to the search unless it is also inspected by a lawyer. If the officers ask you to give them documents, your computer, do not consent to them taking it. However physically trying to block them from searching or seizing items may escalate the situation. You have a right to observe what they do. You should take written notes of their names and what they do. Have friends act as witnesses.
What To Do If Police Stop You In Your Car
If you are driving a car, you must show police your license, registration and proof of insurance, but you do not have to consent to a search or answer questions. Keep your hands where the police can see them and refuse to consent (agree) to a search. Police may separate passengers and drivers from each other to question them, but no one has to answer any questions.
What To Do If You Are Arrested
Repeatedly tell the police “I am going to remain silent, I would like to see my lawyer.” If you suffer police abuse while detained or arrested, try to remember the officer’s badge number and/or name. You have the right to ask the officer to identify himself. Write down everything as soon as you can and try to find witnesses. If you are injured, see a doctor and take pictures of the injuries as soon as possible.
Searches at International Borders
Your property (including data on laptops) can be searched and seized at border crossings without a warrant. Do not take any data you would like to keep private across the border. If you have to travel with electronic data encrypt it before crossing and make an encrypted back up of any data before crossing in case your computer or phone is seized.
Police Hassles: What If You Are Not A Citizen?
In most cases, you have the right to a hearing with an immigration judge before you can be deported. If you voluntarily give up this right or take voluntary departure, you could be deported without a hearing and you may never be able to enter the US legally again or ever get legal immigration status. Do not talk to the ICE, even on the phone, or sign any papers before talking to an immigration lawyer. Unless you are seeking entry into the country, you do not have to reveal your immigration status to any government official. If you are arrested in the US, you have the right to call your consulate or have the police inform the consulate of your arrest. Your consul may help you find a lawyer. You also have the right to refuse help from your consulate.
Police Hassles: What If You Are Under 18 Years Old?
Don’t talk to the police — minors also have the right to remain silent. You don’t have to talk to cops or school officials. Public school students have the right to politically organize at school by passing out leaflets, holding meetings and publishing independent newspapers as long as these activities do not disrupt classes. You have the right to a hearing with your parents and an attorney present before you are suspended or expelled. Students can have their backpacks and lockers searched by school officials without a warrant. Do not consent to any search, but do not physically resist.
Common Sense Activist Security Measures
Don’t speculate on or circulate rumors about protest actions or potentially illegal acts. Assume you are under surveillance if you are organizing mass direct action, anything illegal, or even legal stuff. Resist police disruption tactics by checking out the authenticity of any potentially disturbing letter, rumor, phone call, or other form of communication before acting on it. Ask the supposed source if she or he is responsible. Deal openly and honestly with the differences in our movements (race, gender, class, age religion, sexual orientation, etc.) before the police can exploit them. Don’t try to expose a suspected agent or informer without solid proof. Purges based on mere suspicion only help the police create distrust and paranoia. It generally works better to criticize what a disruptive person says and does without speculating as to why.
People who brag about, recklessly propose, or ask for unnecessary information about underground groups or illegal activities may be undercover police but even if they are not, they are a severe danger to the movement. The police may send infiltrators/provocateurs posing as activists to entrap people on conspiracy charges of planning illegal acts. You can be guilty of conspiracy just for agreeing with one other person to commit a crime even if you never go through with it — all that is required is an agreement to do something illegal and a single “overt act” in furtherance of the agreement, which can be a legal act like going to a store. It is reasonable to be suspicious of people in the scene who pressure us, manipulate us, offer to give us money or weapons, or make us feel like we aren’t cool if we don’t feel comfortable with a particular tactic, no matter why they do these things. Responsible activists considering risky actions will want to respect other people’s boundaries and limits and won’t want to pressure you into doing things you’re not ready for. Doing so is coercive and disrespectful — hardly a good basis on which to build a new society or an effective action.
Keep in mind that activists who spend all their time worrying about security measures and police surveillance will end up totally isolated and ineffective because they won’t be able to welcome new folks who want to join the struggle. We have to be aware of the possibility of police surveillance while maintaining our commitment to acting openly and publicly. Smashing the system is going to require mass action as well as secretive covert actions by a tiny clique of your trusted friends.
More info contact the National Lawyers Guild: 415 285-5067 or 212 679-5100; read The War at Home by Brian Glick or Agents of Repression by Ward Churchill
Sometimes it can be hard to know if you’re crazy, or is it the world that’s crazy. Watching while our society destroys itself triggers despair and anxiety. Yet it is possible to summon the courage to stay engaged with the world, survive and fight back. When you’re suffering is often the hardest time to ask for help from others around you — and paradoxically when you need help the most. Feelings exist for reasons — if you repress them too hard, you can miss important lessons they may have for you. While it is impossible to have a list that will apply to everyone’s situation and often situations have to do with class/race/gender, here are some tips you can use when you’re in crisis or to help to care for others:
• Our brains are connected to our bodies so concentrating on physical health can help treat mental distress. Eating healthy food on a regular schedule and getting enough sleep are key. Exercise, dance, biking and physical movement can help. So can fresh air and having a stable, calming place to stay.
• It can help to focus off the crisis and onto what you find joyful until you can gather more resources.
• It is okay to ask for help and it may help to discuss disturbing mental states with others who you trust.
• An important component of mental health is the ability to know ourselves, understand our needs, and be able to talk about them to the other people in our lives. This can be really challenging and can often take guidance from others who have learned how to do it with one another. One tool for creating written documents for communication is called a T-MAP which stands for Transformative Mental Health Practices.
• It can help to have language for mental crisis that feels comfortable and makes more sense than the dominant medical language. Transmission of language often happens in groups.
• Joining a mutual support group of peers listening to and helping peers as equals can be validating, while not necessarily endorsing your feelings. You can form one yourself or join an ongoing group.
• Find a counselor who supports your self-determination. Ask about confidentiality if someone else — such as your parents, boss, or governmental program — is paying for your therapy.
• Drugs and alcohol often make mental health problems worse.
• Psychiatric drugs such as those for depression or bipolar disorder can help some people reduce distress and maintain stability. Other people experience distress and harm from psych drugs and even have trouble withdrawing from them. Figuring out what works for you can be a process because people differ. Check out “Harm Reduction Guide to Coming off Psychiatric Drugs.”
• Keep in mind that some current emotional crises may be caused by traumas from the past, which may need to be emotionally and consciously processed in order not to keep recurring.
• When you’re depressed, it may help to realize that the depressed feeling will eventually pass and your life will begin to seem meaningful again later. Depression inhibits your ability to perceive and understand the world correctly. Depression is often a lack of feelings and a lack of connection to feeling. Your perceptions of loneliness, un-lovability, and hopelessness are not accurate when you are depressed. Avoid making drastic decisions such as hurting yourself when you are unable to correctly perceive reality.
• Distracting yourself from depressed or anxious thoughts can help: listening to music, making art, washing dishes, or doing a project alone or with others.
• Many communities have 24 hour a day crisis hotlines or crisis centers. Call 800-SUICIDE if you’re thinking about killing yourself or 800 646-HOPE to reach a rape crisis line for survivors of sexual violence. Warning: if you call and say you want to kill yourself police may arrive at your door.
• For anxiety, try to remember to breathe. Practicing meditation may also help you relax.
• Acupuncture or massage can be ways for others to give your whole self some gentle attention.
• Ecopsychology is realizing nature and wilderness are our greatest healers. Spend some time outside the city to get centered and get away from pollution which is in itself mind-altering.
• If you have a loved one in crisis, the most helpful thing is to make it clear that you care and be there to listen. They may not be able to call or ask for help — it can be very helpful to keep calling them every day or two to check-in, even if they don’t answer the phone or seem to want help. Sometimes it is okay to want to be alone so don’t be too pushy. Just make it clear that you care. It’s also import to get support and advice for yourself. Caring about someone who is in crisis is in itself a big challenge.
• Social change: Actually address the stressful factors in your environment. Revolution can heal.
• If someone is having delusional thinking or expressing violence related to mental issues, these suggestions may not be enough and it is okay to reach out for professional help.
The idea behind prefigurative politics is that we begin to practice, here and now, the better world we want to bring into existence. Prefigurative politics describes an orientation to social change that rejects the notion that “the ends justify the means” – revolutionary prefiguration is an acknowledgement that the means themselves shape (and constrain, and infect) the ends that are possible. The means are actually all we’ve got.
So, the best way to cultivate the sexy, just, liberated world we desire is to experiment with and develop the skills and social relationships it will require — right now. As we begin to reject colonial-capitalist lifeways and enact better practices of relating to each other, other beings, and the earth, we are – truly – bringing a better reality into being in real time.
‘Practice’ is the key word here: how might we reject the ways oppressive systems want us to act, and act differently? This is not only a matter of ideology, but also a practical matter of growing our capacity for things like self-governance, interpersonal accountability, and healing. Current systems intentionally siphon away our power; they do not develop the skills in us that we need for revolution or, importantly, what comes afterwards. We are conditioned by the dominant patriarchal, ableist, white-supremacist, colonial society to be alienated from one another, to value certain people’s voices over others, to compete, to distrust and be dishonest. These harmful ways of being, if left unaddressed, severely limit our ability to meaningfully transform existing systems, and will replicate themselves in any new society we try to build. Through the deliberate implementation of better relational systems in our communities and movement spaces, however, we may unlearn these patterns and begin to live and organize in potently revolutionary ways. It is important to note that this approach to political action is not meant to replace other strategies. Rather, it is a component that successful political strategy requires.
Every present emerges from the past, and all futures grow from the present. Prefigurative politics asks: how can we shape the present to enable the future we want?
• Book – Emergent Strategy by adrienne maree brown
• Podcast – Srsly Wrong ep. 243 “Revolutionary Prefiguration (w/ Anark)”
• Video – “What is Prefigurative Politics?” by Red Plateaus on YouTube
• Pamphlet – “What is Prefigurative Politics: How large scale social change happens” by Paul Raekstad and Eivind Dahl, available on anarchistlibraries.net