Posts Tagged ‘political’

We’re back down to having 3 folks living at the Wingnut full time; 3 is a good number when it comes to living together happily but it puts a limit on our ability to organize effectively. We can run all of the projects that we’re currently committed to but we can’t grow and do new things without more people actively participating. Also, we have a lot of friends that come over and help out with stuff that we do in a variety of contexts who don’t always get the input or the credit that they deserve for the work that they do.

One of the potential solutions that we’ve discussed for dealing with both of these problems is splitting the political organization off from the residential organization.   The folks living in the house would all be members of the political side, but the political side would also be open to people who either couldn’t or wouldn’t live at the wingnut.  If you’re reading this and are interested in participating, you probably already have a good idea of who we are and what we’re about, but we’re going to put together more information about what this might look like that will be on the facebook and website in a week or so.

We’re gonna have a meeting on Monday January 28th to try to hash out the particulars of what membership would be like, a statement of purpose and so on.   Feel free to get in touch with us with any comments or concerns that you have leading up to the actual meeting.

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Food Not Bombs is catering the 5th annual RePHRAME Forum “Eliminating Poverty, Protecting Community”

  • Good Shepherd Baptist Church 1127 N. 28th Street, Richmond, VA 23223
  • A Discussion on “Unpacking the 2010 Census” & the Upcoming Mayor’s Anti-Poverty Commission’s Report

More info on the event here: http://www.facebook.com/events/285008308277367/?fref=ts

We will be cooking a spaghetti dinner for about 100 people. Folks who want to help us cater this event should meet at the Wingnut, 2005 Barton Avenue, at 2pm on Thursday Nov. 1st.

If anyone has garlic, onions, noodles, bread, oil, tomatoes, sauce, etc. to donate please let us know. You can call 804 300 0023 or drop the supplies off at the Wingnut.

What’s RePHRAME you say?

RePHRAME, Residents of Public Housing in Richmond Against Mass Evictions, is an alliance of public housing residents, advocates, and allies committed to housing justice for all in Richmond.

The RePHRAME Concerns & Demands:

1. There should be 1-for-1 replacement of any public housing units lost through public housing redevelopment. In other words, there should be no net lossof public housing units. In addition, location of newly created public housing units, and other aspects of the redevelopment process, should increase the employment, education, and other opportunities of public housing residents.

2. Current residents should have the right to return to newly developed public housing without any additional screening or requalification process. In the past, additional credit checks and other screenings (above and beyond those to which public housing residents are routinely subjected) have been used to effectively prevent previous residents from coming back to the newly developed housing. We believe redevelopment should not be used to get rid of residents who have done nothing to warrant eviction.

3. Public housing residents should have a meaningful voice in decisions regarding their housing and communities. Currently only 1 out of 7 RRHA commissioners is a public housing resident. RePHRAME proposes adding 2 additional seats to the RRHA Board of Commissioners which would be filled with RRHA residents.

4. RRHA currently requires that residents mail their rent payment to a SunTrust bank address in Baltimore, MD. Residents must often pay late fees through no fault of their own due to delays in the mail system or processing delays in Baltimore. In February, hundreds of residents paid late fees when a blizzard caused the mail system to shut down. According to RePHRAME’s research of dozens of housing authorities in Virginia and nationally, RRHA alone requires residents to mail rent out of state. RePHRAME surveyed hundreds of public housing residents in Richmond, and the overwhelming consensus is for a local rent payment option, at either the RRHA rent office in their neighborhood or at a local bank.

Last night was the 2nd public meeting of people working to organize Occupy Richmond. This movement has no leaders, no organizers, no hierarchy. The meeting yesterday was not perfect, as could have been expected. There were over 250 people there, many new to organizing, consensus process, facilitating and more.

The main decisions being made yesterday were regarding the time, date, and location of the beginning of the Occupation. A large group started off the discussion, going through some bare bones facilitation and decision making basics. Then folks split into smaller groups to talk about the date and location.

In smaller groups and in smaller conversations throughout the night, there were many discussion about the economy, politics, rights and more. The types of discussions that do not happen on a very regular basis among strangers in Virginia. Just having these discussions, no matter how imperfect, is significant.

Ultimately, what was decided was to avoid conflicting with the TRAP protest already scheduled for October 15th from 1-3pm in Monroe Park. TRAP is the recent Virginia legislation aimed at forcing abortion clinics to meet hospital standards, which would have the chilling effect of shutting down 17 of the state’s 21 abortion clinics. This new rule, wrapped up in the word safety and health, is really about limiting women’s rights to abortion and the health care they need.

The Occupy Richmond group is encouraging people to participate in the TRAP protest. Occupy Richmond will then meet at 4pm on October 15th in Monroe Park. At that time a location will be chosen for the Occupation. Repeat, location TBD.

On the issue of location, there were many ideas thrown around. Kanawah Plaza, Monroe Park, Capitol Hill, FedEx Plaza, locations around VCU, and more were all discussed. There were some folks fixated on Kanawah Plaze for its proximity to the Federal Reserve Bank. Others pointed out that the Federal Reserve Bank is not necessarily the main target of this event. Also that the consequences of trespassing/making mistakes at the Federal Reserve are a lot higher than other places. And that Occupying Kanawaha Plaza would displace homeless persons who sleep there on a regular basis.

This meeting was not perfect, by any means. Folks from marginalized groups swiftly felt marginalized by the process, which is not a good place to start. More white men spoke than other people. Issues of privilege were not really addressed, or understood by many folks in the crowd. Instead of actual consensus “modified consensus” was used, which basically makes it a direct democracy with a limit on how large the majority must be to silence the minority.Hopefully folks (not from marginalized groups) can step up as the Occupy Richmond idea continues to do some education and discussion regarding issues of privilege, among other things.

However, there were a lot of new faces, and a lot of good conversations that did occur. The creation of an autonomous space, in and of itself, can be an empowering positive thing. When this space is created, hopefully radical and anarchist and awesome people in Richmond can find inspiring ways to use this space. Workshops, discussions, and more are all possible once a space has been established.

Here is a video of part of the meeting:

Again- in the time between now and the 15th there is a lot of preparation and education that can be done. From Know Your Rights workshops, to getting new batteries for a flashlight, to taking a few minutes to read about privilege, anyone planning on participating in this occupation owes it to themselves and there fellow occupiers to do some preparing if they can.

http://www.monroeparkoccupation.wordpress.com has information about an occupation of Monroe Park that happened earlier in 2011.

The Wingnut is using a blogspot website to host our  calendar of events – you can find a comprehensive calendar of all Wingnut events at http://wingnutcalendar.blogspot.com/

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From California, two bands of the vegan straightedge persuasion.

Come listen to some acoustic, political punk!

All ages, Sober, bring some money for the travelling bands!

http://www.myspace.com/xfuckedbythievesx

http://www.myspace.com/intergalacticsmugglers

Intergalactic Smugglers are a DIY band from Santa Cruz, Ca, USA, Earth, Milky Way. Our music has been described most commonly as Folk Punk. We try to write politically and socially conscious lyrics. We also, though our actions and music, do our best to promote a DIY Punk philosophy and equality for all individuals. We’re vegan and we like star wars a lot