Tag Archives: mo karnage

Www.mokarnage.com is where to find current posts!

24 Dec

Hey Yall

I should have thought to do this a while ago, but better late than never I suppose. I no long blog at this website. I have a different one I blog on regularly, http://www.mokarnage.com so you can go there to find political essays, personal essays, poetry, art, and more! For political events in the Richmond area http://www.wingnutrva.org is still the place to go! Thank you so much for reading!

Mo Karnage

Public Transportation is a Must, But Not a Solution to Racism

6 Sep

Reading All Aboard? by Ben Campbell brought up conflicting emotions for me.

I felt excited about a public transportation system that might be effective, affordable, and improve the lives of so many low income people in Richmond. I was also excited by Campbell’s accurate, historical look at the loss of good public transit in Richmond, and how he identified racism and bigotry as the reasons why we ended up with the terrible transit we currently eke by with,

So, to get a few things straight before I go into a slight critique-

1- I am for a larger, better thought out, more affordable, multi-jurisdictional public transit system for the Metro Richmond Area.

2- I am against racism, segregation, and policies, institutions and practices that reinforce racism.

The part of Campbell’s article that I think deserves challenging and a more in depth discussion, is the seeming underlying assumption that developing a better public transit system would be anti-racist, and a step towards changing Richmond’s long, dirty legacy of racism. Racism is complex. Racism is not a flag we can change out front of City Hall and move on. Racism is an issue that all Richmonders will have to do a lot of work around for us to take steps forward as a city.
The loss of public transit in Richmond was a symptom of the underlying disease of racism.

Treating the symptom is not enough to solve our problems.
There are some really great things about a better, less segregationist public transit system- the possibility for people to interact more outside of their race, better opportunities for jobs and recreational activities for low income people of color, and more.

But without a more holistic approach to the issue of racism in our city and society, we won’t be “solving” racism. One complicating factor I can think of is simply that a change in our City’s ranking, without a change in real estate practices, might just exacerbate issues of gentrification. As Richmond grows in popularity, low income people, many of whom are People of Color, are forced out of their homes and neighborhoods in response in increasing real estate values. Gentrification represents a systematic problem, out of any individual’s hands to stop. But until this process, poverty, and racism are actively being addressed, I don’t want to see Richmond’s ranking go up.

An improved public transit system would be a marked difference in City policy and programming. Many of the urban renewal projects over the years have been pretty clearly directed towards improving the desireability of Richmond to people who might visit or might one day move here. Consider the tourist aspects of many of the recent projects and events. First Fridays which attracts many people from surrounding counties, and has difficulty when low income youth of color from surrounding neighborhoods in the city start attending in mass. The Canal Walk, where I’ve only ever gone with my grandma (love you grandma). The Convention Center. The upcoming 2015 cycling event. Richmond’s urban planning efforts have been fairly pitiful, and seem to reflect the racism and classism of the City government.

Richmond does need to focus more on keeping current residents, helping current residents, and developing ways to make our daily lives better. Jobs, housing, access to healthy food, and transportation are some really great places to start.

Some questions Richmonders should be asking themselves in the mean time are:

What are we doing to make Richmond a better place for the people who are currently living here?
How can we make sure we take care of the current residents before visitors or potential new residents?
What do low income people want and need?
What do people of color want and need?
How can we listen to low income people and people of color more?

If Richmond really does want to shed our racist reputation we’ve got some work to do. Let’s get a better public transit system, but make sure we don’t lose sight of the whole disease of racism while we ride around on some buses.

Presentation at the Charlottesville Anarchist Bookfair

21 Feb

On Saturday March 19th I will be at the Charlottesville Anarchist Bookfair at Random Row Books with the Wingnut Anarchist Collective, tabling with our zines and books for sale. I will also be doing a presentation on my book The South is Still Rising.

More about this exciting event here:

http://cvilleanarchism.wordpress.com/ Continue reading

The South is Still Rising- March 2nd at Chop Suey

11 Feb

On March 2nd at 5pm I will be doing a book reading and signing at Chop Suey books in Carytown. If you haven’t picked up a copy of The South Is Still Rising yet, this is your opportunity.

I will be presenting on the Tent City Occupation of Monroe Park in 1998 by the General Strike Anarchist Collective.

The South is Still Rising: Contemporary Radical and Anarchist Movements in Richmond, Virginia from 1994-2004

The South is Still Rising explores the little known story of radical organizing in Richmond, Virginia in terms that Mo’s mom can understand. This story is contextualized in both within the history of Richmond and within the history of radical activism on a national and global scale.

The South is Still Rising reveals the things going on in the old capital of the Confederacy that are not played up in the media, and that many folks don’t get a chance to find out about. This is your window into a better understanding of what is actually going on in the South.

A new type of Southern Pride. A history that includes the resistance to racism, sexism, capitalism, and more.

Hope to see you there!

The South Is Still Rising- Book is now Available!!!!

20 Jan

My book, The South Is Still Rising Contemporary Radical and Anarchist Movements in Richmond, Virginia from 1994-2004, is finally printed!P and L Printing, an anarchist and IWW collective in Denver, Colorado printed the book for me.

It is  266 pages. Maroon cover, perfect bound.

I am selling it for 12 bucks a copy.

Plus shipping if you ain’t from around these parts. If anyone has a bookstore or infoshop and wants to buy multiple copies to sell there, PLEASE DO! We are trying to start a whole bunch of new projects at The Wingnut and could really use the financial support.

From the back cover:

The South is Still Rising explores the little known story of radical organizing in Richmond, Virginia in terms that Mo’s mom can understand. This story is contextualized in both within the history of Richmond and within the history of radical activism on a national and global scale.

The South is Still Rising reveals the things going on in the old capital of the Confederacy that are not played up in the media, and that many folks don’t get a chance to find out about. This is your window into a better understanding of what is actually going on in the South.

A new type of Southern Pride. A history that includes the resistance to racism, sexism, capitalism, and more.

You can send 12 bucks plus 2 bucks for S+H to PO Box 6025 Richmond, VA 23222 for a copy. I might adjust the S+H price if it ends up being very different.

RPD Backs Down from Legal Harassment, Anarchy Continues

11 Jan

The Richmond Police Department apparently told a reporter last night that they were dismissing their case against us in court. We have not yet received any official word regarding this- no papers or call or anything. (You never call, you never write). But if this is true it just means that the RPD and the City Attorney realized the HUGE publicity blunder they made in attempting to harass us via court complaints and emergencies orders over FOIA documents.

This does not mean they won’t try and file some other legal documents against us. And it doesn’t mean that the harassment is over. It only means that these particular documents that they filed might be retracted. Without an official apology or statement in regards to it being fucked up to harass us for being anarchists, and also illegal for them to ask for FOIA documents back, this does not mean much.

I appreciate the support legally and media wise from the ACLU.

I appreciate the media attention and coverage of anarchists that this whole tactical error on the part of the RPD and the City Attorney has given us. I also appreciate their direct involvement of my political beliefs in this case. They have made it exceedingly clear that we are enemies. The State and the police feel threatened by anarchists because we stand vehemently against their hierarchies and positions of power. I am anti-authoritarian. I am anti-hierarchy. I want the state and police to be destroyed. I don’t want reform, and I don’t think you can legislate or vote in real change. We need a revolution of the people. And it needs to start in all of our daily lives and communities. If we change our day to day, if we build our own alternatives to the state while resisting oppression, we might see a better world in our lifetimes.

The current system of capitalism and hierarchy CLEARLY does not work. Not for the jobless, the homeless, the hungry, the people without access to good education or healthcare. Not for the environment, future generations, animals, or indigenous people. We need to start trying new things. They won’t all work. But we will never progress into something better if we don’t start trying to find better ways of existing together.

 

 

Richmond Police Department Bringing Court Case Against Me?!? Who Me?

4 Jan

It is fairly common knowledge that being an anarchist is fairly criminalized in the United States. So it comes as no surprise when the State tries to use one’s anarchist belief against them.

In this case, the Richmond City Police Department is using court proceedings to try and ‘compel’ me to give back some of the documents that we got using the Freedom of Information Act. I am the person named in the documents, because someone has to make the FOIA request. But the documents being requested was an idea that came from Richmond Copwatch. We wanted to get copies of the police protocols so we could know when the police are breaking their own rules.

We submitted our request, were informed that there were many different sets of protocols, so we asked for a list. Then we chose from the list. We got that information right before Christmas. We then scanned and uploaded all of the information onto the internet- to save others the trouble and expense of a FOIA request.

Today someone came to the Wingnut and hand delivered a package from the Office of the City Attorney of the City of Richmond. I opened up the envelope to find just 2 documents full of lawyer speak. No cover letter, no explanation. Just 2 documents not even addressed to me, but about me. Apparently the CITY OF RICHMOND POLICE CHIEF BRYAN NORWOOD and the CITY OF RICHMOND, VIRGINIA are filing a complaint against me, the defendant Mo Karn (not even my legal name you sillies). They want some of their FOIA Documents back. Because they say they shouldn’t have given them to me, and importantly, I am a known and admitted anarchist.

So the first I hear of this is court documents. No email, no letter, no phone call asking for them back. Just a copy of a complaint they filed.

The second document they sent me today was an “EMERGENCY MOTION FOR PROTECTIVE ORDER AND TO COMPEL THE RETURN OF TACTICAL INFORMATION AND TO PREVENT THE DISCLOSURE OF SAID INFORMATION

Apparently they want their information back. I don’t think they understand the internet. You can’t really get that information back. We’ve got it, the internet has it, and hundreds of people have looked at it. The documents they specifically request back are Emergency Operations Plan Part 1 of 2 Emergency Operations Plan Part 2 of 2, Canine Unit Manual, Crowd Management Team, Focus Mission Team Property Crimes Detectives Operating Manual, Homeland Security Criminal Intelligence Unit, Mobile Command Center Operating Manual, Mounted Unit Operating Manual, Traffic Enforcement Unit, Police Cyclist Operating Manual, and Police Segway Operating Manual. These are just some of the almost 50 documents we have made available at http://www.wingnutrva.org under the tab Richmond Police Department Documents.

Who knows if these motions will be approved by a judge. They don’t have a case number on them, and they don’t have a court date or any useful information like that at all.

I don’t believe the information in these documents is classified or should be exempt from FOIA. Its not like it is manuals on how to drive their various vehicles or anything actually explicit. Beyond that I definitely believe this has a lot more to do with politics. Their FIRST point for their motion is that “1. Defendant Mo Karn is a known and admitted anarchist. See generally https://anarchymo.wordpress.com/2010/12/21/foia-rocks.”  Yup. And that has what to do with FOIA? Freedom of Information Act Except for Anarchists would be FOIAEFA. I didn’t request shit through FOIAEFA.

In the spirit of FOIA and making RPD documents available online, here are copies of the documents they sent me in the mail today.

Emergency Motion for Protective Order by Richmond Police Department V. Mo Karn

Complaint by Chief of Police Bryan Norwood And The City of Richmond V. Mo Karn