We have been informed that some antifascists intend to protest the rally for Mr. Trump in Tulsa, OK this weekend (June 20th, 2020). Given the potential for negative interaction, we are offering the following guidance:
- DO NOT engage in offensive violence and property destruction. “Offensive violence” is “violence in the absence of a direct threat, or which is not clearly an act of self-defense.” Engaging in offensive violence will only serve to validate and support disinformation narratives portraying antifa as a “terrorist organization.”
- AVOID direct engagement with pro-Trump counterprotesters. No good will come of this, and given the place and the nature of Trump’s fascist fan base, the probability that they will be carrying firearms approaches one. Don’t get yourself shot.
- DO NOT place your faith in the police to protect you. Given the demonstrated hard-right authoritarian bias of what appears to be the vast majority of police officers, it would be safest to assume they are there to oppose anti-fascism since they’re fascists themselves.
- KNOW YOUR PEOPLE. Be aware of infiltration attempts, counter-intelligence agents portraying themselves as anti-fascist to get “inside” and then start committing acts of violence and destruction so the president’s media sychophants can advance their narrative that Antifa is a “terrorist organization.” If you find yourself in a situation of close proximity to someone engaged in this behavior and you don’t have the numbers to stop them yourselves, CLEAR OUT OF THE AREA. Don’t give anyone an excuse to claim “Antifa” is at fault.
- KNOW YOUR PEOPLE (again). There have been reports at recent rallies of alt-right agents handing out water and food laced with laxatives and other mild to moderate poisons. Do your best to bring your own, and if you accept consumables from someone else try to make sure you know them and can trust what you’re getting.
- IF YOU ARE BRINGING milk, water, etc. to help with medical treatment for exposure to tear gas or pepper spray, don’t leave it sitting out. There have been multiple reports of police and counter-protesters destroying milk and water containers and other medical treatment equipment. Do your best to leave enough in secure, non-visible spaces that you’ve got backup in the event your first cache of supplies is destroyed.
- HUMOR AND SONG ARE EFFECTIVE, NON-VIOLENT WEAPONS. Five hundred kazoos blasting “The Imperial Death March” will gain far more attention, and more positive attention, than a thousand rifles.
- IF YOU ARE ARRESTED, you have the right to remain silent and the right to an attorney. Your ONLY statement, if you must say anything, should be “I don’t answer questions,” and “Am I being detained.” If you are not being detained, walk away and say nothing further. If you ARE being detained, you have an entire list of rights, including the right to an attorney. If you are detained or arrested and subject to questioning, request a lawyer and then shut up until you get one. DON’T ASSUME a court-appointed lawyer is your friend; talk to them alone, privately, to satisfy yourself they’re on your side before taking any advice.
- Given the nature of this event, on careful consideration we believe this is fertile ground for effective, passive action. Actions in this vein may include:
- “Silent protests” – a large crowd making absolutely no sound is one of the most jarring things a human being can experience. To surround or line entranceways and red carpets while remaining quiet or especially remaining quiet and turning our backs is an extremely powerful act. It’s unnerving on a good day; it’s downright disturbing. Sit-in, lie-in, die-in type demonstration is also very effective.
- Good Documentation – bring cell phones, video recorders, etc. Remember to avoid unmasked faces when possible; people have been targeted after being seen in protest photos. Livestreaming is a big plus; it’s about impossible to effectively fake a live stream.
- CORONAVIRUS IS STILL A THING. Wear your masks, for your own protection and that of others.
- The less “aggressive” and more “firm” the better. This is not a boomer call to protest “the right way.” It’s tactical and strategic advice. You can absolutely count on every single instance of apparent hostility being photographed and passed around the fascist networks as “evidence” that we are “violent.” It has proven VERY effective to distance ourselves from this behavior; if you’re smiling at someone and handing them a bottle of water or a flower or something while they’re screaming and threatening, it makes for excellent visual documentation of our desire for peaceful revolution.
- As always we are not leaders or bosses, and you’re welcome to make your own decisions. These are simply things for you to keep in mind that may help make your action more effective, based on our considerable experience in such circumstances.
We are not coordinating bus trips or anything of the sort, so please don’t ask us. Your local activist networks may have transportation available if you need it.
Respectfully submitted to anti-fascists worldwide, in solidarity,