Monday, May 3, 2010
SubRosa needs your support-- and I don't mean financially, this time. We are getting blamed for the May Day dance party that resulted in broken windows in downtown SC. Individuals involved with SubRosa are having their physical well being threatened. People are using what was a huge dance party with a few acts of vandalism as an excuse to attack SubRosa and anyone in any way associated with it. There are accusations that SubRosa organized the May Day event, that the event started at SubRosa and a ton of other things that aren't true. SubRosa had nothing to do with the event, except that there were fliers for it here, as there were allover town and allover the internet.
This is a time for us all to band together, to show support and solidarity with each other in the face of a police state that has always blamed anarchists for everything destructive, while actively trying to prevent people from exercising creativity that would create alternatives to capitalist relations. The people who make this town a fantastic place to be are far more important than the walls and windows of businesses that suck our souls away for their profit.
Most of the accusations leveled at SubRosa are coming from two places (which may actually be the same place). One is Take Back Santa Cruz, a group of white, upper-middle class, vaguely conservative people who wrote an almost completely inaccurate email to its email list conflating every DIY community event in Santa Cruz with the May Day vandalism. The other source of misinformation comes from the ever virulent Santa Cruz Sentinel online forums. There is a lot of inaccurate information posted there, partly due to inaccurate reporting in the Sentinel's article and partly due to a bunch of ignorant jerks who get to write whatever they want without having to sign their name to it. A lot of the comments have been incredibly racist, and incredibly violent, calling for doing injury to SubRosa collective members, and even posting their addresses, or, even more offensively, blaming the vandalism on illegal immigrants, which just shows you the true ignorance of the people posting.
It seems incredibly ironic to me that people who are so appalled by "violence" done to buildings would call for physical harm to be done to real people.
This town does not just belong to the rich, the white, the business owner. It also belongs to the artist, the street musician, the worker, the homeless. It also belongs to the anarchist and the anti-authoritarian. We live in a place where business owners and the police try to control our every move, where you can sit, what you can say, and they give us nothing in return, telling us to move along so that the rich tourists who come to spend money won't have their pure eyes tainted with the sight of our ragged clothes.
The SubRosa collective has created a space that challenges the commercialism and rampant capitalism of downtown Santa Cruz, and we have tried to balance that with setting boundaries towards people who come in to our space to create a safe and welcoming atmosphere for people to share ideas and create friendships and alliances. It isn't easy and we do struggle with maintaining a space that feels positive for us all to be in. But the people who frequent SubRosa do not deserve less respect just because they don't have a lot of money or drive fancy cars.
Let's continue to show solidarity and support for each other and plan community events, because that is what actually makes this town worth living in.