Saturday, February 27, 2010

Public Interest Environmental Law Conference 2010

Yesterday i spent the day at the PIELC (

Sat in on panels featuring speakers like Tre Arrow (recently released political prisoner), Jeff Luers (recently released political prisoner), Nik Hensey (Resistence, journal of the Earth Liberation Movement), Kim Marks (Cascadia Rising Tides), Victory Lefey (Portland IndyMedia), Allison Lance (SPECIEES), Matt Rossell (In Defence of Animals), Lauren Regan (Civil Liberties Defence Center), Ben Rosenfeld (Civil Liberties Defense Center), & Michael Luurtsema (Tiga & Hugh Defense Campaign).

Afterwards, i attended the Civil Liberties Defense Center benefit, which also featured Jeff Luers, as well as Ramona Africa, and some great bands.

Made for a very long day.

Despite the fact that we live under a fascist government not only willing to, but commited to, violent exploitation of land and animals for the sole interest of profit... yesterday gave me the gentle reminder that i am not alone. Not alone in my instinctual need to defend myself and the life around me i care about. Despite the fact that our fascist government is not only willing to, but commited to, using any means necessary to silence the voices of reason and truth, there are still warriors all over the world willing to, and committed to, fighting back. Yesterday was a particularly good reminder that the green scare and terrorist enhancement hasn't sent all of us hiding behind a rock, but there are still those committed to direct action. Even when our government has labeled peaceful protests and legal exercises of our constitutional rights as eco-terrorism, and even when they have imprisoned our brothers and sisters with sentences of unprecedented consequence.

If you are not familiar with these concepts, i urge you to do some research on Operation Backfire, the Green Scare, Animal Enterprise Terrorism Act, and our movements current political prisoners.

I often feel isolated in my radical beliefs, especially around my support of direct action as a tool. The government and specifically the FBI has done a very good job scaring activists away from the direct action that was strong and steady in the late 90's. But i was once again reminded that we cannot let that deter us. The only thing wrong with direct action is that not enough people are doing it. I heard a lot of inspiring quotes throughout the panels and speeches, gentle reminders like 'why would we let our oppressors define our method of engagement to free ourselves'... 'how did we become a country where desiring clean air, clean water, no poison on our foods, and speaking out for it was labeled terrorism'... ' how did a movement who has never harmed a human or animal, but rather defended the rights of both, become the #1 domestic terrorist threat? What about the anti-abortion movement who has caused over 13,000 injuries to humans?'... ' How are activists practicing constitutional freedoms being lumped into terrorist categories alongside people who allegedly fly planes into buildings and commit mass murders?'... 'Its no coincidence that the FBI's grip on our movement has tightened at the same time that a worldwide awareness of climate change and our environmental impact has been heightened'... 'legal and non legal have nothing to do with right and wrong'...

The FBI is out to destroy us from the inside out. COINTELPRO and its methods have never stopped being put into action, and post 9/11, post patriot act, post terrorism enhancement has only given them more fuel to cripple our movement. But as isolated and distanced from the movement we can sometimes feels, the important thing is that we are not alone. There are people fighting across the globe, and it is all one revolution. We must use any and every means available to fight this war, and to get media attention for this war. 'We may have jobs, but this is our work'.

Feeling refreshed, re-excited, re-empowered, and re-motivated to embark on the next phase of the battle.
See u on the battlefield.

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