Interview with Ernesto Aguilar of the Anarchist People of Color (APOC) The anarchist people of color movement has been around for a long time. Martin Sostre is one of the best-known people of color in contemporary history to articulate anarchist politics, as was Kuwasi Balagoon. Today, Ashanti Alston and Lorenzo Komboa Ervin are two of the most visible anti-authoritarians of color, but this movement is decentralized and diverse. There is no formal APOC organization at this point. In 2001, I founded an email list and website called Anarchist People of Color, and much activity — including the conference — has developed out of them. Getting to that point owes a lot to the past, though. My involvement was borne out of a few things. Back in the early 1990s, I was part of a Houston anarchist collective called Black Fist, which was active around issues of self-determination, anarchism and race. And I talked with so many other people of color who were,... (From: ColoursOfResistance.org.)
Smack A White Boy: Report Back
Blame it on hypocrisy and a failure to understand that Americans are getting exactly what they asked for when they elected Barack Obama as the new president. Act Now to Stop War & End Racism Coalition (ANSWER) will probably blame it on the low turn out. I can hear them saying to each other right now “… if only more people came out to protest the war, someone would have to listen”. Only in your wet dreams could fucking the war machine be that easy.
On Saturday March 21, 2009 Autonomous People of Color (APOC) blocked the ANSWER coalition march as they aimed to launch the beginning of the post-Obama anti-war movement. You must say their dramatic direct action totally failed unless they completely misunderstood those tactics. What occurred was nothing more than a laughable continuation of the pageantry that is a result of lazy, “American-style” activism. You know the scenario; it’s the same old crazies, middle aged white men with long hair and beer bellies singing “peace is what the world needs”, code pink theatrics, crusties and your faithful Negro tokens fronting a group run by white authoritarian socialists. Have you heard about the new direct action that stands in front of the war-profiteers place of business while nobody’s home with no intention other than to shout into a crowd full of angry people, take pictures and peacefully walk away? Yes, and it’s called “wasted opportunity”. There were chocks full of rocks on the way to visit the war profiteers. I know that I can’t expect them to be that creative, but haven’t they learned anything from the people they claim to be in so much solidarity with? Hezbollah flag waved high! How bad do they want this war to end? I think its as bad as they want to end racism without confronting their own white privilege.
Then there were the Pictures. A ton of press waited for them as they did their victory speeches, just waiting to capture the moment when they reached their climax. Understand that the pictures are very important because without the pictures, nobody would have believed that they had ever even been there. What did they change? They left no permanent mark, just empty threats within empty parking lots. It was the kind of march that follows the leader, without missing a beat or falling out of line. Tell me I’m still sleeping on them, but this CANNOT be what they had in mind.
Yet they pat themselves on the back for getting people ‘in the streets’. It’s this pacifist, debilitating, and self-serving state of activism that promotes holding signs, chants and permitted marches for a good time on a Saturday afternoon. It must be fun to be against the wars when you’re not the target. This is the activism that starts at the rally and ends at the closest McDonalds or Subway. You really know the anti-war movement is dead or at least in its death throes when the same people holding anti-imperialist and anti-corporate signs are the same people standing in lines that stretch out the door of two of the most well known and exploitative fast food chains in the world. The march over the memorial bridge must have really left them too pooped to put their generic signs away first before replenishing their bellies and collapsing back into their typical, complacent, monotonous lives. This is the reason why I personally took direct action to confront the self-important, smug, liberal activists that think that their “kind” of direct action stops wars. APOC had to educate them that an organization that has “END RACISM” in its name can still perpetuate white supremacy. APOC had to reclaim our space and show the movement exactly what direct action looks like. We wanted to confront racism so we blockaded their march and did it.
To all of the naysayers that are worried about what APOC does with it’s time: This was not a public anti-war action. This was an anti-ANSWER distraction. We did not march with them, we infiltrated their ranks unnoticed and surprised them with a blockade once the puppets had walked away. If even for a moment, we broke the fringe-left spell. The ‘leaders’ had no clue what happened, all they heard was that some ‘minorities’ were causing trouble. Minorities? Black, Yellow and Brown people make up the majority in Washington, DC and we won’t leave until we are forced out. As far as APOC is concerned “Smack A White Boy” served its purpose as it was self-determined and we have nothing to prove to you. APOC is building power and plans on even more ambitious direct action in the future. For everyone of every color that stood in solidarity with us: Thank you. For all the people that said we were ruining their march: Your welcome.
From : TheAnarchistLibrary.org
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