We discover complete freedom in full solidarity with one another and the earth, and use direct action and mutual aid to grow our capacity for solidarity. Direct action means that we take collective action to assist one another and our neighbors without handing our power to a middle person (e.g., politicians, police, lawyers). Mutual aid is a voluntary reciprocal exchange of resources for mutual benefit.
Practice: When people ask us for help, we use direct action to assist. We first seek to understand the problem and then come up with a concrete, winnable goal. We then plan an escalating series of direct actions to achieve the goal.
Here are some examples:
- A restaurant worker in our circle is cheated out of wages for overtime work. After talking with the worker, we decide that it is a winnable goal to obtain the overtime wages. We decide to collectively deliver a letter to the boss that clearly explains our demand and provides a deadline. If the deadline passes, we start a series of protests outside the restaurant during the height of business.
- A trans* woman high school student approaches the circle about being bullied. After talking with her, we decide that it is a winnable goal to end the bullying. We collectively decide to deliver a letter to the bully asking him to stop. If the bullying continues, we start a series of protests outside the bullies home and speak with his parents on the front lawn. In addition, we go with the transgender student to the school administration to obtain the assistance she needs and request to do a workshop at the school on queer lives.
- A renter is not getting needed repairs completed. After talking with the renter, we decide that it is a winnable goal to get the repairs completed. We collectively decide to deliver a letter to the landlord that clearly explains our demand and provides a deadline. If the deadline passes, we start a series of protests outside the landlord’s office and talk with prospective renters about the situation.
Practice: All of the money donated and raised for Wild Men Rising creates our mutual aid fund. This money is available to assist people in need in our circle and beyond. Funds could be used to help a trans* person with gender reassignment surgery not covered by insurance or someone in need of a rental deposit.
Bread & Roses song from Pride
- 198 Methods of Nonviolent Action by Albert Einstein Institution
- Anarchism and Sexuality: Ethics, Relationships and Power by Jamie Heckert and Richard Cleminson
- The Anti-Fascist Handbook by Mark Bray
- Build Your Own Solidarity Network by The Seattle Solidarity Network
- The Ecological Rift: Capitalism’s War on the Earth by John Bellamy Foster
- Joyful Militancy: Building Thriving Resistance in Toxic Times by Nick Montgomery and carla bergman
- Marx’s Concept of the Alternative to Capitalism (pdf) by Peter Hudis
- Marx’s Ecology: Materialism and Nature by John Bellamy Foster
- Radical Philosophy: An Introduction (pdf) by Chad Kautzer
- Re:Imagining Change: How to Use Story-based Strategy to Win Campaigns, Build Movements, and Change the World (pdf) by Doyle Canning and Patrick Reinsborough
- How to Fight a Plague by David France
- Pride by British Broadcasting Company
- “Queer Dialectics/Feminist Interventions: Harry Hay & The Quest for a Revolutionary Politics” by Bettina Aptheker
- Witchcraft and the Gay Counterculture (pdf) by Arthur Evans