A couple of days ago I was at an anti-fascist counter demonstration. The fascist never showed up, but something other than fascist were there. These folks can be just as dangerous, but in a differant way. Im talking about the media cops.
The crowd was anywhere between 150-200 folks. About half of these people were masked up, and a semi-decent black bloc formed. This is great. Fascist want to see our faces, just like the police. We cannot afford to be known if we wish to see fascism eliminated, for our lives of our loved ones and ourselves could be in jeapordy.
As I was putting on my mask, a person tried to film it. I was VERY angry, but I kept calm. I didnt feel like paying for a 600 dollar camera and going to jail for assualt. I walked up and told this person to not film folks in mask, at all. I was met with slurs and laughter, and even called a fascist. The people with cameras kept trying to film everyone with mask, closely. I talked a few out if doing so, but only a few respected me.
I was met with 3 main arguments; transperancy, the right of journalism, and how if you want to remain annonymous you better have a good mask or its your fault. All three are disturbing, but especially the last one. I also encountered the same 3 arguments on a facebook debate later that night. These people are so adement of filming masked comrades!
This inspired me to write this for 2 reasons. The first being love. I love most anarchist. Regardless of politic I do not wish to see anyone in jail, or worse, dead, so some blogger or youtuber can gain some social capital. Nor for some livestreamer to show "the people" who is at what doing what.
The 2nd reason being the lack of hostility, and neglegance to call this dangerous and reactionary behaviour. Regardless of politic, we as a millue cannot let this happen. Have your singular revolution, or your late night smashy smashy. I dont care when it comes to your safety from the state and other enemies.
TRANSPERANCY: Fuck "The people™"
Live streaming has been a thing gaming culture took to the interwebs, and people could watch tournaments, podcast, or even lets plays in the comfort of their home, live. This technology is pretty cool in the context of broadcasting something you often must pay to watch.
However, in the context of resistance, insurrection, and revolutionary activity this technology serves as yet another apperatus for the state to use for their reppressive efforts of squashing rebellion.
The alleged people watching this are not unwoken workers, or sheeple, or folks to busy to go out and yell "fuck the police!" These folks ARE the police, either actually or mentally.
The police look through whatever evidance they can find to place us in their ratchet jail cells. They comb through video after video looking for that mask that shows recognizable facial features such as eyes, forheads, or even skib colour. They atentively listen for recognized and high profile voices. We are practically handing this information to them!
The mental cops do the same. They live tweet who they think they recognize. They update their facebook statuses when they suspect they recognize that filthy "anarchist" (their words, never mine) that smashed those windows or threw dumpsters in the street, because they "gave a bad name to anarchism." They also aid the police in their endevours knowingly, or unknowingly. They are mental police.
Lastly transperancy is unnescescary. The news reports on whatever happened. The news is as much of an state apperatus because they are also media pigs, but they know to stay way.
We need not focus on this imaginary homogenous "people" and lets face it, you livestreamers are only getting 10-50 viewers, who the fuck cares? Definately not the alleged people!
Right To Film? Right to fuck off
We all encounter these types of folks. The ones who use their state sanctioned rights to invalidate our identities, repress our self, and reinforce the social order through words and phrases. These are the constitutional warriors. Here to defend their right to be a fucking asshole.
Amongst this social exist a band of photo journalist and youtubers who document police and protest for transperancy as well, but specifically fall back on amendments and rights.
This group should physically be opposed for three reasons.
The first being obvious. They are media cops who endanger our annonymicity.
The second being is they are social enemies, on the exact same side as the police. They tout the same party line if the police were a leninist party.
They claim they have a right to film, and it is protected under the constitution. This is dangerous for several reasons. Firstly, rights can only be protected by a state. Rights themselves are an individuals expression of access protected by a social, and in this case, the social is the state. They assert state protection by claiming a right, while also claiming you have no right NOT to be filmed. They see only through the eyes of the state. This makes them potential snitches, and even worse, the second reason to oppose them.
They are in the exact opposite social of anarchist everywhere. We have no state to protect our individual assertions of access. Only our uniqueness protects us. We are opposed to the state! We wish to see it absolutely destroyed!
We cannot tolerate this reactionary...for lack of a better word....statism (i feel dirty now). Our two seperate socials are in a consistant conflict with eachother. Their assertions of right to film is an assertion of state control and governance.
Not to tout ideological purity, or perfectionalism in an analytical context, but this is reactionary as fuck! These are the same folks that say "not all cops are bad" and "hey dont smash those windows!"
Whatever your anarchist politic is, we can all agree; FUCK THAT SHIT
Its YOUR Fault The State Repressed You
This is the absolute most disturbing and reactionary behaviour that MUST be aggressively opposed. We absolutely cannot tolerate this behaviour around us.
Those who espouse such vitrolic and dangerous statements of victim blaming and uncheck machismo put everyone in jeapordy, while reinforcing a dangerous message to survivors of all kinds of trauma.
To say one has a complete responsibility to remain anonymous is true. You must be smart.
However, it is not their fault. They did not choose for the state to exist. They did not choose for fascist to exist. They had no say in the existance of either. How can one who claims to be on our "side" (whatever that means) express such hateful notions and lack of self-awareness?
If you claim to be on our side, walk the walk. You are just as responsible for filming someone who is failing at remaining annonymous, as they are for not being prepares. They must be concious of media cops like you, but if you on our side you must be aware of the danger you impose yourself.
This is not a game, and the state is not some unskilled, untrained apparatus. They have existed longer than us, and you damn well must see they are more prepared.
We must protect ourselves and our comrades. Media cops, fuck off.
Closing: statement and advice
In closing I wish to give some advice.
If you are an anarchist, masked up or not, and not in the mood to get arrested for being super insurrecto/ class badass? Block their shots. Put your sign in front of their cameras, block them with your body, anything that does not touch them.
If you are willing to.be arrested and possibly charged with assualt, AND a shit ton of angry liberals: Smash the fucking camera. They may be expensive, but compare the lives of your comrades to 600$. Fuck money, keep eachother safe!
Silly string, graffiti, fuck even food. Mess their shit up.
Now, to the media cops: Nobody fucking invited you. We dont want you, we dont like you. Every march or rally or event we are at you buzz around us like busy bees flocking for their queen bee (the state, for those bad at analogies). You tell us to respect your right to film? Fuck you. Respect our right to not be filmed or we will break that fucking camera.
Fuck your subscribers, fuck your blog viewers, and fuck your facebook friends. My comrades safety is waaaayyyy more important.
Media pigs, FUCK OFF!
this essay is a written response by john cracklemore, to OPDX live and FTPPDX.
This essay also follows the anti-© enactment. Copy, take, print, sell. Do whatever you wish. Knowledge is not property, property is theft!
Anarchy now, Anarchy forever.