One of the most interesting and rewarding aspects of living in Seattle, Salish Sea and Duwamish territory, is our community involvement in civic discourse. Our city has long been an innovator and developer of protest strategy and tactics, and in recent years has been the target of far right, racist, white supremacist and fascist groups. Many anarchist and antifa members on May Day (May 1, International Workers’ Day) joined the protests for many years of Latino and other immigrant workers rights, exciting police concerns. A number of anarchists and labor activists in the area have been held in detention for several months at a time. Now protesting youth are being targeted.
I’ve been disturbed by the Seattle police department’s handling of youth protests of climate change over a week ago. Local students have walked out since the call for regular Friday protests by Greta Thunberg of Sweden last year. Last week’s arrest of a thirteen year old girl at Seattle City Hall is especially disturbing since it involved young people graffiti. (NB: I’m especially sensitive about spray paint since my stencil, Trust Women is currently on display at CoCA’s Girlfriends of the Guerrilla Girls.) see
Here’s a brilliant response by Nikkita Oliver, always a voice for youth, justice and civic good sense. She invokes a vision of alternative responses to heavy handed policing on the very day the Council was developing a Green New Deal resolution.
Oliver’s advocacy of restorative justice has long impressed me. When she ran for mayor, I supported her and continue to value her positions on civic life including the youth jail, public service, housing, public services. She still defines for me, the candidate for office I have wanted all my adult life.
The images above reflect my recent creating of a Harriet Tubman stamp to put on the US $20 bill. When the US administration Treasury Secretary Mnuchin announced he was postponing the planned 2020 replacement by an image of Harriet Tubman of genocidal slave owner Andrew Jackson, I began writing her name on every $20 that came by me. In September 2018, Hyperallergic ran an article about Brooklyn artist Dano Wall’s creation of a rubber stamp likeness of Tubman specifically designed to replace Jackson. Here is an update of that article with links to Wall’s Etsy site and resources for the Tubman image.
Here’s a Washington Post update which also includes some advice about the rules regarding modifying currency.
So I had hoped to order @danowall ’s Etsy stamp, but honestly, every time I sign up for notification when more are in stock, they’re sold out again. So I worked out my own. I still want one, but, in the meantime, I have something that works. It’s a devotion.
The loss of Toni Morrison is the occasion of remembrance and I was looking again at her collection of essays, Playing in the Dark (Harvard University Press, 1992), especially the discussion of individualism as an American construct dependent on ["yoked to" --her words] Africanism in "Romancing the Shadow." The work I was doing in the early and mid 1990's is informed by these discussions among other feminists and artists. Crisis management is the conflict of the myth of individual consciousness with the need for social justice, manifested in blame, shame and guilt projected onto our natural processes. Yes, working on a bibliography for the exhibition.
Coming next month to Town Hall is Ibram X. Kendi, professor of history at American University and profound political anti-racism strategist. He’s sharing his new book, How to be an anti-racist, a work which promotes the notion of confronting injustice, not avoiding it. Instead of working with the policies and system we have in place, Kendi asks us to think about what an antiracist society might look like, and how we can play an active role in building it. There’s a great interview with him on 8.13 Democracy Now episode.
Finally, appearing with Dr. Kendi is Ijeoma Oluo whose tweet stream this past week is harrowing, especially to parents of young people.
This thread—read it all, including the conversation with other twitter participants—especially if you’re unfamiliar with the term.
"Seattle has the only anti-swatting registry in the country. This needs to be everywhere."
For history see the wikipedia article on swatting
There is a rather complicated history of legislation, including that of now US representative from California Ted Lieu.
For Seattle PD policy
We are back to working on protecting young people. I haven’t even started on gun control, or whatever is going on in Portland OR, but there’s hope there, too.
Update: So Girlfriends of the Guerrilla Girls is up through September 21, 2019. I plan to be at the gallery this Thursday 8.22, and a group of the exhibiting artists will be there 8.31 for informal presentations about some of the artwork. Several of us will be there on First Thursday, 9.5 until 9pm. Also important is the news that CoCA is a 2019 recipient of the Seattle Mayor's Art Awards. The ceremony will be on August 29 and details are available at https://www.eventbrite.com/e/2019-mayors-arts-awards-ceremony-reception-tickets-61125751769