2 – Introduction to issue #140

Slingshot is an independent radical newspaper published in Berkeley since 1988. 

A lot of shit is going down. Some of us are trying to heal, others just keep our heads above water. The billionaires are trying to compel us to go to war. Many of us are still grieving those lost amidst a pandemic and a system set up to squeeze all the meaning out of life. How to keep your soul alive under such conditions?

We created this zine under the shadow of what some are calling the “East Berkeley Wall.” In case you missed it, People’s Park was violently seized on Jan. 4th, 2024 and been surrounded by a shipping container fortress guarded by round-the-clock private security since. If you’re wondering what happened to Slingshot Number 139, we made a Special People’s Park edition in a fit of frenzy and grief that was only hand-delivered in the Bay Area.

Making this zine is not a linear or particularly rational process. The collection of articles and art we print is random — determined by the whims, fancies and personalities of whoever shows up for the meetings. At the first meeting for this issue, we started to doom spiral. We fretted that we didn’t have enough articles or motivation to pull off an issue. Why does it even matter? Then some of the new volunteers started talking about how important this shit is, and we started hyping each other up, and wait a minute — our judgment felt impaired — this is fun — being with people and working on something together is just fun. So why the fuck not? Why not make an issue? If anything, it gave us a reason to hang out together, listen to good music, and enjoy our loft at the Long Haul … while we still have it. Now the landlord says our building won’t be demolished until 2025… This weekend Long Haul was flooded with volunteer artists, a direct action training for Gaza, sunshine and creative energy — we gotta fight harder against this fucking eviction! 

Fun is revolutionary — let’s make ourselves a threat to those in power with our solidarity, unity and love to overpower their isolation, greed and emptiness. And while we’re at it, let’s make the revolution more fun, colorful, diverse, inclusive and welcoming — a place we can be vulnerable, open and comfortable that isn’t consumed by internal conflict and factionalism… 

Joining up with the freaks who aren’t doing what they’re supposed to be doing and putting your life-force into making your own do-it-yourself adventures can change your mood – from powerlessness, resignation and floating to determined creative activity and a feeling of possibility. The Berkeley Mardi Gras Parade, not the internet. A squat or artists’ warehouse, not a condo or shopping mall. 

It’s time to jump free of systems that don’t serve us and over which we have no control. Let’s disconnect from corporate-controlled mediums in favor of raw, first-hand experiences that connect us with other people, genuine community and nature. We gotta silence the cop in our head, the CEO in our head, the politicians in our head — and trust our own vision for a better world organized around cooperation, sharing, beauty, equality, freedom, sustainability and love. The total is greater than the sum of the parts. Being around other people is magic. We are more together than we are alone. Somehow, the Slingshot miracle has happened again. 

Slingshot is always looking for new writers, artists, editors, photographers and distributors.  Even if you feel you are not an essayist, illustrator or whistleblower you may know someone who is.  If you send an article, please be open to its editing. We are a collective, but not all the articles reflect the opinions of all collective members. We welcome debate and constructive criticism.

Thanks to the people who made this: Ani, Antonio, Cathy, eggplant, Elke, Feral, Fern, Finn, Frankie, Harlin/Hayley, Henry, Jack, Jesse, Kaley, Kendrick, Korvin, Lola, Lucie, Lucy, Luis, Matteo, Matt, Olive, Robin, San, Sean, Sirkka, Tracey, Trinity, Yosha & all the authors and artists! 

Slingshot Article Submission Info

We’re not going to set a deadline for the next issue. We encourage you to submit articles for the next Slingshot anytime you want. We’ll make another issue when we feel like we’re ready. Please check the Slingshot website, IndyBay, instagram and facebook for deadline info. We also have an internal email list that will announce the next deadline so please contact us if you want to be added to the list. 

Volume 1, Number 140, Circulation 24,000

Printed March 23, 2024

Slingshot Newspaper

A publication of Long Haul

Office: 3124 Shattuck Avenue, Berkeley CA 94705*

Mailing: PO Box 3051, Berkeley, CA 94703

510-540-0751 slingshotcollective@protonmail.com 

slingshotcollective.org • twitter @slingshotnews

instagram/ facebook @slingshotcollective

* Our office may be torn down in 2025 so check before you visit or you may just find a pile of rubble

Circulation information

Subscriptions to Slingshot are free to prisoners, low income folks, or anyone in the USA with a Slingshot Organizer, or are $1 per issue donation. International $3 per issue. Outside the Bay Area we’ll mail you a free stack of copies if you give them out for free. Say how many copies and how long you’ll be at your address. In the Bay Area pick up copies at Long Haul and Bound Together books, SF.

Slingshot free stuff

We’ll send you a random assortment of back issues for the cost of postage. Send $4 for 2 lbs. Free if you’re an infoshop or library. slingshotcollective.org