Increasingly violent young Anarchist dilettantes are advocating attacking journalists while vandalizing property during street demonstrations. Their screeds can be found on numerous local area blogs dedicated to promoting destruction of property, threats, intimidation, and assault. The following article was posted on pugetsoundanarchists.org, a blog whose participants insist on speaking only to themselves…anonymously…preferring to ban/block opposing viewpoints. It’s a toss up as to whether journalists today are at greater risk from street elements (including the homeless), police ignorant of the laws they’re sworn to uphold, selective law enforcement, or those engaging in the politics of destruction–i.e. Anarchists. Comments will be interlaced as the particular blog site would otherwise censor such critical remarks.
Wed, 05/09/2012 – 9:49pm — Anonymous (of course)
Although the author of this piece believes that members of the main-stream media should be assaulted *strategically* at any place and time, this piece was heavily influenced by what I saw occur on May 1st 2012 in Seattle Washington. As an anarchist in Seattle, this is written mainly for a Seattle audience although hopefully there are some things people from other places will be able to take away from it. (Such as attacking/injuring those who serve as the eyes & ears of the community, an informed electorate being necessary to any functioning truly democratic society?)
The main-stream media will never be on our side. We don’t even need to get into which company owns what media outlet, let’s leave all that aside, they are scum and we know this. Beyond this, almost all forms of media that are not “our” media will almost never be on our side. (What you seek isn’t ‘reporting’, what you require is approval and advertisement/propaganda.) Luckily, in the radical scene in Seattle, this is something nearly everybody already knows. There is frequent talk of how the media lies to the public and a common understanding that they will intentionally distort our “message” . (Your “message” is abundantly clear and speaks volumes for itself right here.) While this is an accurate analysis, it does not run deep enough. This analysis places the media in a role that is much more passive than the actual role they fulfill. Many of us have seen the images and videos from the G20 in Toronto, or the Vancouver hockey riots, or most recently the London riots. Those of us who have seen these images are also probably aware of the way that the state attempted to identify people who they perceived to have commit crimes. (The State/Anybody is at liberty to gather evidence from public sources/streets to hold those who commit such crimes accountable. If a vandal doesn’t want to be seen/filmed committing such crimes in public, then don’t commit such crimes in public.) While much of this footage came from security cameras (which should also be smashed as frequent as possible, obviously(?)), in each case there was also a good deal that came right from the media reporters who were present at all of these actions. (Imagine…reporters actually doing their job gathering information/photos and covering a story instead of taking dictation at the hands of government press officers!) In several cases the media either gladly handed over the footage the cops were interested in, or simply broadcasted the crimes in real-time, giving open access to anyone who had a desire to review the footage. (Yes!–That’s what reporters do: They report! They are NOT your ‘co-conspirators’. They do not require your permission to report on events in public venues.)
The media is not a passive enemy, but a quite active one. The presence of the media at our demos does not only distort our views or delegitimize our struggles and confrontations, it puts people in jail or prison. (Where would you have those who wantonly destroy property and assault/attack journalists put? Those who commit such crimes are not tried by the press, but a jury of their peers–is your ‘message’ being distorted here, or is it simply and painfully obvious? What you advocate is ‘blinding’ the public in order to avoid responsibility. Recording images in public venues is a fundamental liberty interest belonging to all citizens, not just members of the ‘press’.) All of the major media outlets in Seattle were just handed a subpoena endorsed by Detective Ric Hall, stating that they had to hand over any material or footage they have from May Day, they are specifically interested in the footage in which people appear to be committing crimes (go figure). Although, as of now it is unclear whether or not the outlets will comply with this request, they probably will. (You’re volunteering to serve their jail time for contempt if they refuse?) However, even if not all the outlets complied, there is already information floating around that KIRO has already given all of their material to the police, and it is currently being reviewed. While we can certainly hope for the best, realistically it will not be a shock if they end up indentifying people from these videos and charges end up being filed. (Good to hear there will be no ‘shock’ when vandals are ID’d and charged. Perhaps the 9/11 terrorists shouldn’t have been filmed either? Just what gives YOU, et ux, the ‘right’ to destroy anybody’s property? Mind publishing your address and vehicle license # so victims can return the favor?)
We have already seen the way the media has portrayed May Day, day where the anarchist terrorists brought mayhem to our peaceful little green city. (Truth will out. And pictures are worth a thousand words. The public can SEE the windows being smashed by black clad anonymous figures. So that’s ‘distorting’ your “message”? And whose car was that with the smashed windows?) After all, what’s to say one of those windows couldn’t have been your living room, or the doctor’s office where your elderly mother was attending her appointment. So we can only assume that this trend will continue, and that they want to see us “held accountable” for our terroristic actions. (That’s a fair assumption.) They will most likely offer any information they have to the police, aiding in the apprehension of the criminals. (Not necessarily true, but an assaulted journalist almost certainly will.) Once, again even if in some miraculous turn of events they don’t hand over all of their raw footage, the stuff shot live still exists, and the police will probably not have too hard of a time accessing it.
The police claim that they were well prepared for May Day. However, it is rather hard to imagine why they would let the federal court house (among other things) be attacked on a day where they were (allegedly) so well-prepared. They are eager to identify people and charge them with these crimes. (Shouldn’t they be?) They must be feeling beyond embarrassed about all of the property damage that occurred, and they also have the downtown business association breathing down their neck to apprehend those who destroyed their property. We must assume that they are going to go to pretty great lengths to try to get some convictions. (That, too, is a pretty fair assumption. But then this kind of rhetoric will mollify potential jurors, yes?) The task force has already been set up, and if they don’t already exist, I don’t think special snitchlines and websites are very off. (They won’t need them. Most citizens would be eager to assist the police in apprehending those responsible. Journalists may be among the few exceptions–unlikely, though, if they’ve been personally victimized.) They feel embarrassed and need to prove to “the public” that this type of behavior will not be tolerated and that the consequences will be very real.
(Possibly 20-30 years, yep.) This is why the media must be assaulted, there is a very real chance that people will end up in jail because of the footage taken. (This is why the media may need to take up arms/concealed handguns to provide for their own self defense. They have that right. The rhetoric here lends credence to the need.) However, many in Seattle did do a great job at scaring away some of the more timid reporters (props to all those who used their flag-bats for the right purpose). (So the Seattle Mayor was correct, after all, in declaring an emergency and ordering the confiscation of such weapons?) Several of the reporters were assaulted by those in the bloc, and a few of them even had to run away because they felt too unsafe. Reporters were paint bombed, struck with flag-bats, punched, kicked, and slapped. (The language of tyrants!) Over all I would say the this particular march was not very a peaceful atmosphere for reporters, despite what that guy over at the stranger said. We cannot shame them away. Yelling can be good and invigorating, but it will not do enough, we must treat them like the lap-dogs they are and physically remove from the area. Although this could be done without violence, it would probably take a lot longer, and let’s be honest they definitely deserve it. (Really? Only the youngest most naive sophists would accept your argument–your intended audience. Those with no theory of government make the easiest targets for Fagin.)
If we are successfully able to remove the media from core areas of our demos, or at the very least severely limit their access, there is much better chance of incriminating footage not winding up in the hands of the pigs. At this point, it is kind of a given that there will be at least some cameras around while the crimes are being committed, those who are choosing to document this stuff need to be very particular about the way they do it. (Should they bring a note from their mother?–or you, perhaps?) I would say that it helps if people actually know who you are and have a relatively clear conception of why are there holding a camera. (Or possibly more helpful still would be for you, et al, to have a chat with their brothers, Smith & Wesson.) However, don’t be surprised if anyone shows any hostility to you for trying to capture images or film, because in most cases it’s obviously for the better if our crimes don’t get caught on film. (Better for you, maybe–not all.)
If the media is going to be actively complicit in putting us in cages, then they must be actively attacked. (And defended! Your rant should convince any/all to volunteer whatever information they have to stop such assaults on the community as injury to one is injury to all. The legislature should pass a law enhancing penalties for hate crimes targeting journalists.)