- js reader version
- email this article
- view hidden posts
- tags and related articles
Friday, Sep. 14, 2012 at 12:23 PM
Chalking & the Disruption of Business as Usual in DTLA: It has never been about the sidewalk chalk on the sidewalks, that's a simplified interpretation of a more sinister picture.
It has never been about the sidewalk chalk on the sidewalks. That's a simplified interpretation of a more sinister picture, a dumbing-down of a tug-of-war between the State and dissent.
Last October, OccupyLA camped with City Council approval, and a council member said the protesters "could stay as long as they liked". Chalk was everywhere then. It was "allowed" at City Hall last Fall because the messaging was contained around a dead fixture of "democracy", where anyone present was already interested in an alternative. In a sense, it was a "Free Speech Zone".
And we know what a "Free Speech Zone" really is: containment of dissent. Putting contrarians in a sometimes literal box, far from the action. Ironically, City Hall was as far from the action in Los Angeles politics and life as you could get.
When occupiers began laying siege to the Central City Association, that's when suddenly chalk was worth riot cops, hysteria, Mayoral quotes, and Chief of Police statements. Over chalk? NOPE. The Central City Association is a microcosm of the 1% and Wall Street, the bridge between money and politics here in our town. So, suddenly the chalking mattered. It mattered not because of the heinous graffiti that washed away in mere seconds, but because our target mattered.
When analyzing this marriage with corporation and government, the violence of the state is usually a good indicator of dissent’s efficacy. What did we see when we followed the money that is donated to every single council member in City Hall? Suddenly we saw police directly following the orders of those men in suits, those men really running the show. We saw arrests and trumped up charges and brutalization for a child’s plaything.
But it wasn’t about chalk. It was over stifling what the people were WRITING on the public sidewalk. It was over content. Content like the names of all the Black Panthers murdered by the LAPD: ARRESTED! Or writing out directions and meeting times to the general assembly meeting at Pershing Square: ARRESTED! Or daring to write about the banks' crimes (ARRESTED!) the politicians' criminal participation (ARRESTED!), or even "Happy Birthday" messages to comrades... building solidarity? Arrested!
This is because the CCA has a plan to further criminalize, "Intelligence-based graffiti" and they purchase whoever holds the Mayor's office, City Council, and LAPD. To expose the ever-present fascism all around town is far more dangerous than scrawling, "Peace, Love, and Evolution!" around City Hall. That was not threatening to those in power... but chalking truth to the masses, damning capitalism in pastels all over the city - that poses a real threat.
So we have chalk solidarity around this nation-state and around the world. We have LAPD firing "less-lethal" projectiles into crowds, we have police around Amerika brutalizing and arresting people because this IS NOT ABOUT CHALK.
This is about disrupting the status quo. This is about the oligarchs in this City so TERRIFIED of the people rising up that they apply the 'broken windows' theory to the First Amendment. For chalk is a bolder reclamation of space than holding a sign. It is an indicator of defiance and of claiming of haggard black asphalt.
This is a battle of classes, manifested within a quick-dissolve artist's canvas. It not about chalk - it's about who controls the streets: the Authorities or the People. It's about who gets to display their ideas in public: those that PAY MONEY or the People.
Report this post as:
Segregation in the City of Angels: A 1939 Map of Housing Inequality in L.A.
Justice Dept. seeking info, IDs on 1.3M visitors to protest website DisruptJ20.org
San Francisco Rally Protests Hate Crimes in Charlottesville
New Google algorithm restricts access to left-wing, progressive web sites
Tracking Twenty Years of Stockton Killings by Law Enforcement
Garcetti Cronyism - Why and How to Ignore Your LA Dog License
Nation's Worst Meltdown Was In LA
As RV towing resumes in LA, officials say program won't 'target homeless'
Class War on the Waterfront: Longshore Workers Under Attack
Limits to Growth Published Forty Years Ago
KPFK's Indy Media on Air Now on Wednesdays
Lessons From Portland’s Clashes With Fascists
Dr. Maryse Narcisse of Haiti Visits Southern California
May Day March in Riverside
Nuclear Shutdown News: April 2017
Jewish “Defense” League: Nazis in Skull-caps
Nuke Shutdown News 3/17
RELATIONS STILL STRAINED BETWEEN SOUTH LOS ANGELES RESIDENTS AND THE POLICE
Elect a Green to Congress in Los Angeles
Prop. H Activists March on Hollywood to House and Help the Homeless
More Local News...
Closing Reception: Ruth Chase: West of Lincoln Project
Fascism in Charlottesville, 2017/Racism in Selma, 1965/It's still on
Alicia in Arroyoland
Fbi agents go too far in their crime spree
A Sort Story about Iran, The Ayatollah Khomeni and Iran during the Shah
Reem’s Oakland bakery seeks Court order halting protests over terrorist mural
Engramme socioculturel, engramme idéel
Philippine President Duterte's State of the Nation Address (Sona)
PHILIPPINES - Akbayan slams Duterte's raid killings, threats vs. rights activists
'Pasion de Vida '
Fbi Retaliates Again, II
Fib Retaliates Again
What in the Hell is Wrong with Portland Indymedia?
Introducing the 'BURRO', the fbi
Sexuality Control, Forced Marriages happening in some areas
Cheap Mexican Sugar Imports Hurt Florida and Louisiana
Sonja Trauss is No Anarchist
Happy Accidents Offers The Secrets To Success From A Fresh New Perspective
Elephants giving rides at this year’s Minnesota Renaissance Festival were abused, says Ani
The Shortwave Report 08/18/17 Listen Globally!
Trump's Neo-Nazis and the Rise of Illiberal Democracy
Central Kentucky Mobilization for Hemp Passed near Lexington I-75
environment harmed by mandatory jury duty.
Fbi Agents Rampantly Engage In Criminal Activity
Boeing Built the B-52 and the 747
More Breaking News...