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The Left Is NOT Quitting!
by Christopher Loch (contempla [at] riseup.net)
Sunday Sep 16th, 2001 1:24 PM
The article "The Left Unilaterally Disarms" is poorly titled unless one hopes to cause others in the left to back down themselves after losing hope.
The article \"The Left Unilaterally Disarms\" is poorly titled unless one hopes to cause others in the left to back down themselves after losing hope. While the article may not tell people to quit when they actually read it, when they browse over the hundreds of articles on Indymedia almost no one reads all of them, and they may skip your article but have read the headline. We don\'t need people reporting that the left has given up causing others in the left to give up themselves figuring that no one stands in solidarity with them anymore, or that they should be fearful. Some may have given up and there is good reason to be fearful, but neither will help in continuing the struggle for radical left politics. The whole left has not capitulated, so why post such ridiculous headlines that can have no good effect? Why not post instead a headline like the conclusion of your article that we must not give in instead of telling people we already have and contributing to low moral and perhaps even causing some to lose hope? Think before you write! I at first thought damn this sucks after reading the headline. Then I thought who the hell posted that... I haven\'t given up, no one I know has given up in the face of this newly energized right wing climate... so who posted such a thing that caused me to lose hope for just a second before I gathered my senses? I was thinking it was some provocateur hoping to scare lefties into submission. While your article doesn\'t appear to actually be that, your title was poorly thought out. Indymedia is about facilitating the continued growth of the movement, not despairing and depressing everyone into quitting. Choose your title with that in mind next time!

Another word on a stumbling block of left: paranoia about surveillance. Okay people! We know that FBI and CIA are surveilling people on the left and have been for decades. So if they increase this now because of all the war mongering and pushes to reduce civil liberties how does that change our mission? Yes we need to inform people that losses of civil liberties will be a bad thing and hopefully prevent greater losses of them than we have already been living with before all of this happened. But we also need to continue to operate on task, in line with our several missions to end oppression and exploitation globally. We cannot sit around getting paranoid about surveillance!!! We know they are surveilling people, but we will not be able to stop them from doing so, at least not immediately. They have been doing this forever and they have the technology and funding and high level backing to continue to do so. Our paranoia about it will not stop it. Yet, we still have a mission here, don\'t we? Well wasting time worrying about how exactly they are surveilling us is stupid. Let\'s use our energy to continue our mission instead of being distracted! When you challenge the status quo, you should know going into it that no matter what constitutional guarantees we are supposed to have that the rulers will not sit by idly and let us dismantle their systems of oppression. Not that they are justified in their surveillance and repression of activists, but they will continue doing it no matter what because they can right now. We need to be a little more like them in that we need to focus on our goals and see them through. If you are scared that is natural, but you need to think more about the goals of the movement and know that they are more important than any one of our lives. There is a bit of sacrifice to be had in the struggle against oppression, in fact it is implicit in that struggle. If people can\'t handle that for themselves and continue to be scared than they should do what they need to do for themselves, but that shouldn\'t include fanning the fears of others and whipping up unneeded paranoia that only distracts and can actually cripple or destroy a movement. Let\'s get on with it! Yeah they\'ve got their sights trained on us, but they always have. How serious are we about changing our world? Are we just brave middle classers who talk revolution in the suburbs and get arrested at protests knowing that white skin or class priviledge will save us later on when we want to get comfortable and have a family? This is a time when perhaps the movement will be sifted a bit, with those who lack true dedication to true change falling out to a greater extent than before, but we can\'t worry about that either. We need to continue to meet with our comrades and discuss ways to end oppression and then take action. Most of all we need solidarity and to continue our business of trying to change the world for the better. This is not the time to hide like rats in our abodes with the lights dimmed being depressed. We need each other, we need solidarity. I attended a meeting of like minded people last night and it was amazing. At first I was apprehensive about going thinking it would just be a bunch of people whining about how terrible things have gotten, but that wasn\'t how it was at all. We talked and shared perspectives and stories about our experiences in the last week and we also talked about concrete steps we can take keep the movement strong and most importantly to KEEP IT GROWING.

Aside from all of this, Obviously a little, rather a lot, of culture jamming is in order given the war mongering and racism going on in the media in addition to the regular
disinformation, lies and omissions that the media has been putting out for years. A bolt of lightning struck me just now and I decided that I am going to do a t-shirt run soon of shirts that say \"Tom Brokaw is full of shit.\" Any takers? Please email me if you want one so I can make the appropriate amount. They\'ll probably cost around $9.00 each depending on how many people want one, since they get cheaper to make the more I make. There will be no profit taken by me on this whatsoever.

In the struggle between the powerful and the powerless, to claim neutrality is to side with the powerful. -Paolo Freire

\"Nothing is more difficult and nothing requires more character than to find
oneself in open opposition to one\'s time (and those one loves) and to say
loudly: No!\" -Kurt Tucholsky, Germany, 1933.

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