Monday, January 10, 2022

"Between Dread and Hope" #SaveEastRiverPark #RiseAndResist #GarlandDoYourJob #Indict #NoOneIsAboveTheLaw


Herr Lehman and B Movie, Lust and Sound
We Are Nature Defending Itself

Lately I have read a lot about Simone de Beauvoir. 

"Our hope is that history will bring within society more profound changes than have appeared thus far..." said Simone in the 1970's, dreaming about socialism, looking back at decades of political engagement, wondering about it all, existentialist engagement, class struggle and her distinct feminism.
 "I wavered between dread and hope...." she told Sartre, looking back at her life, as they approached their fifth decade together. 

I think we all do to some extent. 
I certainly did in the first week of the new year, looking at East River Park disappearing.
I thought about if we were doing enough. 
Was there a way to slow the bleeding?
Was there a way to stop the death machine?
Was there a way our imaginations or bodies or direct action could save us?
Was there enough of our faith, of our communities?
I thought of it all week long, going to the park in the morning, in the afternoon. 
Every day we hold space at the park; a wonderful group of people gathers to witness and fight back.
"When I came here in the 1970's,this was what I loved about it," said Eileen, looking at the park during one of our 1 PM meet ups, reflecting on the public space we are losing
It was the place Peter biked to after his stroke.
Protest the park.
Resist false solutions to climate change, say the signs.
Standing there, you hear the birds chirping in the trees about to be cut down. They are still singing. Each day more trees cut, more jigsaws; the squirrels run about, looking.
More old trees gone. Stop what you are doing cry activists.
Why cut down all the trees in plan designed to mitigate against climate change?
I think of it reading Isa Fremeaux and Jay Jordan
of the Laboratory of Insurrectionary Imagination's We Are Nature Defending Itself, tracing the stories of campaigns against "another extinction machine whose bad breath spreads droughts and death, famine and blood...."
I thought about it,
walking to Tompkins talking about dreams and surrealism with Mark, eating pierogies, thinking about what our night thoughts tell us, how they remind us, the stories that grow from them, if we can listen, if we can hear them. 
Still in love with New York, we chat at Veselka, making our way to Famous Rays, through Tompkins to Charas to the gardens on Avenue C, talking dreams and surrealism.

I thought of Simone's doubts on the way to 42nd Street, calling out for accountability for the Coup Conspirators, who called for the capital riot of January 6th, 2021.
"Do you job Garland," chanted members of Rise and Resist on the anniversary of the riot, the Rise and Resist NYC gang out in the street. Indict the coup leaders. Remember.
Our history is never that far away in these moments.
It certainly felt like it last week, as the Trumpers rehashed old know nothing arguments, 
seemingly channeling South Carolinan Preston Brooks who attacked abolitionist Charles Sumner on May 22, 1856 in the halls of congress. 
Sometimes I am not sure we are going to get out. 
For four years we fought Trump.
And then we kept pushing.
And the walls remained.
The death machine churned forward. 

Are there ways to live another way, I thought, walking to Red Hook, looking at the magic light dancing in the sky, the snow still out. 
I thought about it on the way to Williamsburg, riding along the Navy Yard, walking along the rezoned waterfront, where we traveled to Kreutzberg, Berlin,
watching Herr Lehman and B Movie, Lust and Sound, walking along the water, staying out chatting for hours after the movies. 
And out to Garrison and back, looking at the Hudson and the trees, the snow in the yard, 
dreaming, looking at the city, 
Looking at COVID, grasping friend after friend, another round, always around.
Looking our lives ever changing, reading Simone, looking at it all. 

This blogger by Jackie Rudin. 

This blogger by Jackie Rudin, who writes: 
"GARLAND, DO YOUR JOB! Today, Rise and Resist and fellow pro-democracy activists crowded the steps of the NYPL to demand the Department of Justice immediately hold all high-level seditionists accountable for their crimes. It’s been a year, and not one leader has been indicted! More upsetting is the fact that the public is being kept in the dark as to who is even being investigated! The lack of consequences has emboldened the plotters and their followers. As a result, the assault on democracy continues in the form of hundreds of voter suppression laws, death threats against poll workers, the usurping of nonpartisan voting, and the removal of leaders who stood up against efforts to steal the vote. We demanded that Merrick Garland and the DOJ move swiftly to investigate coup leaders and indict those found responsible. Anything short of full accountability for their criminal actions will encourage them and their followers to continue the coup and repeat the script in future elections. Next time they may succeed. When Democracy is under attack, what do you do! STAND UP! FIGHT BACK! #RiseAndResist #GarlandDoYourJob #Indict #NoOneIsAboveTheLaw"


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