Baltimore officials thought medical info for protesters was rebellion and a threat – and they aren’t the only ones

It was September 2012, and I was in Manhattan, acting as a street medic at the Occupy Wall Street first anniversary protests. They’d been happening all weekend but the biggest ones were going to happen next morning. Meanwhile, a bunch of protesters were crowding into Zuccotti Park, which was ringed by barricades and NYPD […]

The anti-racist-policing movement has done fine

In the wake of the DOJ’s report on Ferguson, there’s been a lot of people talking, correctly, about the terribleness of the Ferguson police report. There’s also been people complaining that the DOJ’s finding Darren Wilson’s story credible enough not to prosecute means that Mike Brown wasn’t a good case to focus on, “Hands up, […]

On Oprah and movement structure

Oprah decided to market her “Selma” movie by saying that Ferguson protesters need “some kind of leadership” that makes concrete demands. The actually-existing, prominent, dedicated, respected organizers of Ferguson were not thrilled. Especially since Ferguson Action, a major movement coordination website, has both a long-term vision and shorter-term demands right there on the site. Individual […]

On politics, activism, charity, and efficiency

While reading a forum, I came across a link to a blog post by Scott Alexander of Slate Star Codex, which made the case that “charity” is a more effective way of helping people than “politics”. This post is a response to that one.

First, the bits that I do agree with. The eventual conclusion […]