We’re two days out.
The General Strike is nearly upon us and the symptoms of apprehension are visible in all of us. Finger nails bitten down to the nail bed, jumpiness around the NYPD that slightly resembles hup, maniacal outbursts of Officer Winski, and tight circles of activists chain smoking cigarettes in a fast-paced fervor (an obvious reminder of Liberty Square and ol’ Nick’s People’s Tobacco table).
Some have concerns with managing and coordinating the logistical triumph that the Really Really Free Market will be, others are fretting over the weather forecast, but one common qualm I’ve heard repeated is a question of May 2nd onward.
Though our inner optimist (the one that guiltily but dreamily devours Adbusters) does not want to rule out the possibility of May 1st being an instance of revolution — one wherein our 5 months of work, twitter feeds, and spontaneity smash capitalism, patriarchy, racism, and the state — but the on-the-ground, goal oriented, strategy and tactic obsessed, movement builders and name takers realize that in precarious times, we must have a firm idea of where to go and what to do after May Day.
For the past month, a group of dedicated organizers that look beyond the jubilation that May 1st will bring have been working on a massive anti-austerity action campaign. For a week in mid-May, there will be daily focused actions addressing various inadequate or unjust sectors that culminate in a mass convergence that lands on May 15, non-coincidentally a day of Global Strike called by the Indignados.
Victories will surely be won on May 1st but let us not forget that in our lifetimes there will always be space for the pursuit of justice, space for empowerment, somewhere to break free from the chains of alienation and state repression. A better world is not one bound by unity bred in a finite example of achievement — we will always need to confront and dismantle hierarchical power where we see it, we will always need to work on fulfilling the foundation of an anti-oppressive culture.
Organizers of this week of actions say,
[We] aim to bring huge number of groups and individuals from all across the city to fight together in diverse ways to tie together the many issues we face – from cuts to social services in the city budget, to austerity in general, to the systems that cause them - in a global movement emerging to resist them and create something new instead.
Targeted epicenters of evil include war, police, environmental degradation, homes, jobs, education, and immigration.
To get involved in the organizing of these post-strike actions, attend the next organizing meeting: Thursday, May 3rd, at 6 PM at 256 W. 38th Street on the 12th floor!
(Hopefully you won’t have to, though, because capitalism is collapsing in T-minus two days…right?)