- js reader version
- view hidden posts
- tags and related articles
by Pittsburgh Organizing Group
Saturday, Jul. 05, 2008 at 7:02 AM
POG adopts Sector 1 and will blockade 7th and Wall Streets
Monday, September 1, will be a day of civil disobedience and direct action to shut down the opening of the Republican National Convention (RNC) in Minneapolis-Saint Paul. Pittsburgh Organizing Group (POG) will join these actions in opposition to a two-party system incapable of meeting basic human needs that is bankrupting and decimating our communities through a culture of war and fear.
The RNC Welcoming Committee (RNC-WC), a Minneapolis-Saint Paul-based group, has been publicly organizing to shut down the RNC through a three-tiered strategy of blockades. Dividing downtown St. Paul into seven sectors, the RNC-WC is asking groups to adopt an intersection or sector. POG has decided to coordinate blockades for Sector 1 and shut down the intersection at 7th and Wall St. We invite you to join us in Sector 1 on that day.
Why Shut Down the RNC?
Many rightfully point out that this convention is a spectacle since the result is already a certainty. This is a coronation, not a decision-making event which outsiders can influence. If we shut it down, they could always meet a week later in a secluded location. However, this is exactly why and what we're protesting.
The current system doesn't survive because of a decision made by a party or politician. It doesn't survive because parties calling themselves "The Republicans" or "The Democrats" say they represent the people. It survives because of corporate control of the means of mass communications that limit the scope of the political discourse. It survives because people give the system "legitimacy" through their participation (with activities such as voting) and refusal to demand more. It survives because it prevents the rise of-and has successfully delegitimized-alternative means of decision-making in the popular imagination. In the end, people have few choices on a limited set of questions that never get at the root of where power rests. This is not enough. Our goal isn't to push a more centrist or even a more liberal candidate. It isn't to strengthen government power in the hopes that can curtail corporate power. Nor is it putting into power a new brand of left-wing elites. Our aspirations are to change the fundamental structures of society to decentralize power and decision-making so all those impacted by a decision have a say in its outcome, to change the economic question from "what is profitable?" to
"what is necessary, desirable, and sustainable?" and to expand the concept of liberty and the pursuit of happiness from simply "freedom from" to include "freedom to."
Conventions, elections, and debates are events that promote the false idea that people are freely participating and freely choosing who best represents them. They mask who has power and obscure the reasons why certain people have power. In this way, the RNC and DNC represent the idea that it is legitimate for John McCain and Barack Obama to be the only realistic choices to head a vast hierarchy ruling over the lives of hundreds of millions of people and affecting the lives of billions.
The positive result of shutting down the Republicans' convention, much like shutting down a trade agreement summit, does not primarily reside in the decisions that were delayed or the meeting that couldn't take place. It is in the loss of legitimacy the institution suffers as it becomes controversial and alternatives demonstrate popular support. It breaks a cycle of propaganda that has lulled people into believing "the way things are" is natural, desirable or inevitable. It reaches out to the half of the population that chooses not to participate in electoral politics to say, "There are people searching for something different and we need your voice." It reaches out to the other half that does participate to say, "We know why you vote. We know that who rules us can be life or death within this system. But we also know that our future rests in figuring out how to break out of the trap of accepting bad rulers for fear of getting worse rulers."
The change we can believe in lies in direct, participatory democracy, built on strong social movements that oppose interconnected oppressions and expand individual and collective freedom at the expense of the forces, government and corporate, curtailing it. We believe that in this desire for true freedom and true democracy, we have much in common with the people of Minneapolis and St. Paul and very little in common with the John McCains and Barack Obamas of the world.
POG's Role in the RNC-WC Strategy
Over the past year, the RNC Welcoming Committee has worked with people from all over the country to create a strategy for shutting down the RNC. The result was a three-tiered strategy of blockades, the division of St. Paul into seven sectors and a plan for blockading known as the "3S Strategy" (Swarm, Seize, Stay). With this in mind, the RNC-WC has called for groups to adopt sectors and to block intersections. POG has decided to adopt Sector 1 and organize a congestion blockade at 7th and Wall. As articulated by the RNC-WC, adopting doesn't mean POG is blocking all the intersections in our sector, nor are we assuming responsibility for recruiting and ensuring other groups do so, it simply means we're making ourselves available as a point of contact for groups interested in operating in Sector 1. In this way, we will provide an open avenue for participation, and help disseminate information and coordination.
We will announce a Sector 1 launching point, place and time later this summer. In conjunction with the RNC-WC, we will organize a Sector 1 spokescouncil meeting the weekend before the actions. On Sept. 1 participants will collectively swarm the sector, seize key intersections and hold them for as long as possible.
We hope this call will provide an inclusive way for others to participate in the action and help build the success of the mobilization. We see a public gathering point as important for groups to utilize for their planned actions and it provides an easy way for smaller groups and individuals to plug into the actions. Through clear articulation of our underlying motivations and goals we hope to dialogue with other groups and the general public about why and what we're protesting.
At the 7th and Wall congestion blockade, we will collectively resist any attempts to dislodge the blockade through our numbers and determination. Though we hope to avoid it, participants should understand this action has the risk of arrest and the possibility of police violence. In addition to the normal police arsenal of weapons, the Twin Cities have recently passed new protest laws restricting the rights to assemble. A chart of the new policies is available here.
We are working on how to facilitate an initial gathering point for groups operating in Sector 1 and will post updates on our website. Regardless of assembly restrictions it's important not to let other sectors down. Groups should be prepared for the possible necessity of reaching their intersection alone. Plan accordingly.
To Get Involved with Sector 1 "Direct Action for Direct Democracy":
If your affinity group or organization is interested in publicly endorsing this call, participating in the blockade of 7th and Wall, or blockading another intersection in Sector 1, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org to coordinate.
As we've already mentioned, not all the information is available yet. We will be releasing another call closer to the action. Check our website at www.organizepittsburgh.org/rnc to keep up with updates and get information on our plans and the situation in Sector 1.
For the official call to action and other info see www.rncwelcomingcommittee.org.
Report this post as:
LATEST COMMENTS ABOUT THIS ARTICLE
Listed below are the 10 latest comments of 1 posted about this article.
These comments are anonymously submitted by the website visitors.
Change Links 2018 July posted
More Pix: "Families Belong Together," Pasadena
"Families Belong Together" March, Pasadena
Short Report on the Families Belong Together Protest in Los Angeles
Summer 2018 National Immigrant Solidarity Network News Alert!
Watch the Debate: Excluded Candidates for Governor of California
Change Links June 2018 posted
The Montrose Peace Vigil at 12 Years
Unity Archive Project
Dianne Feinstein's Promotion of War, Secret Animal Abuse, Military Profiteering, Censorshi
CA Senate Bill 1303 would require an independent coroner rather than being part of police
Three years after OC snitch scandal, no charges filed against sheriffs deputies
California police agencies violate Brown Act (open meetings)
Insane Company Wants To Send Nuke Plant Waste To New Mexico
Change Links May 2018
Worker-Owned Car Wash on Vermont Closed
GUIDE TO REBEL CITY LOS ANGELES AVAILABLE
lausd whistle blower
Help KCET and UCLA identify 60s-70s Chicano images
UCLA Luskin: Casting Youth Justice in a Different Light
Change Links April 2018
Nuclear Shutdown News March 2018
Join The Protest Rally in Glendale on April 10, 2018!
Spring 2018 National Immigrant Solidarity Network News Alert!
Anti-Eviction Mapping Project Shows Shocking Eviction Trends in L.A.
Steve Mnuchin video at UCLA released
Actress and Philanthropist Tanna Frederick Hosts Project Save Our Surf Beach Clean Ups
More Local News...
Un monde de pauvreté
14 Disturbing Facts About Scott Gottlieb, Trump's FDA Head
Behind the scenes at fbi National Academy
Treasury Takes Aim at Shell Companies
Paraphysique de l'intelligence
Oklahoma GOP Senator Jim Inhofe's Bloody Record
Globalization: hope on the horizon despite Fake Liberals.
Sorry President Trump,Ted Cruz Texas Judicial System,is Worse Than Many Shithole Countries
The Shortwave Report 07/20/18 Listen Globally!
The System Question as a Survival Question
Nation's Largest Voting Machine Co., ESS, Admits Lying Re Having Installed Remote Control
Du pain et des jeux
Paraphysique de martyrologie
Children Incorporated Earns 4-Star Rating on Charity Navigator
Democratic Socialists of America
Leonard Peltier Non Violent Native American Political Prisoner since 1970's
Paraphysique miscellanées de l'aggiornamento
FBI Investigated LA County Sheriff Baca,Why Not Hank Skinner's Persecution?
Updated Partial List Of Famous Vegetarians, Vegans, & Fruitarians
The Shortwave Report 07136/18 Listen Globally!
Social Policy as Social Infrastructure
Vol I: 84 Varieties Of GOP Election Fraud
Texas Can Call it An Execution,But It is A State Sponsored Murder of Hank Skinner..
June 2018 Honduras coup update
Maria Estrada doubles down on racist support
New York Women in Film & Television Announces 2018 NYWIFT Ha Phuong Scholarship Recipients
Trapps de la domination, trapps de l'aliénation
Please Work For The Defeat Of Brett Kavanaugh And Why
More Breaking News...