Throw them both on their ass for their crimes and for their class!

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Serve The People Austin concluded our election boycott campaign tonight outside of the polling station in Montopolis. What do these candidates represent? Not democracy. We are for democracy, one where the workers who make this world run have direct control over their lives and no one is forced to go without. The sham democracy of the USA has us forced between choosing a war hawk Hillary Clinton, who is financed by the same corporations who are funding the Dakota Access Pipe Line, which is poisoning indigenous people. She represents the corporate class of thieves and scum who foam at the mouth to wage never ending war in other countries and poison people for profit here at home. Or we could choose Trump who is a virulent racist human hater, billionaire landlord and grifter. His right wing fanatics go on crime sprees burning the cars and churches of hardworking folks. Both of them represent death and poverty, so what do we do? We rebel!

A small protest and march was held to state loud and clear that we are not being fooled by this so-called “democracy” for the elite. We chanted that “every time the ruling class chooses- whoever wins the working class loses”, “1234 Slavery genocide and war- 5678 America was never great” and “Throw Trump/Clinton on his/her ass- for his/her crimes and for his/her class”. We got lots of honks in support from commuters and workers alike. Even those who were voting still showed signs of support with few exceptions- even those who still believe in voting know full well that neither of these presidential candidates really represents their interests.

Children from the community were mobilized fashioning make shift masks out of their t shirts and joining the protest, they grabbed signs and help with chants, the young comrades were most eager to take swings at both crooks in the form of Trump and Clinton piñatas. The young comrades showed what they would do if either of these rich scum had the nerve to show up in South East Austin! The piñatas were destroyed and candy was enjoyed by all. As the heads of two of the most hated candidates in American history hung like monuments from the trees, more local youth came to join in using their heads as punching bags until they fell to the ground finally becoming useful as soccer balls for the people, eventually the heads were kicked into the street and the cars finished what the youth had started. News media was on the scene but they did not stick around.  elect6
With no options representing the people we move into an uncertain future- one of crisis and continued poverty, and one of plunder of third world resources by the greedy hand of the US imperialist class. We know one thing that whoever wins it is no victory to the people and that tonight when the results are announced right wing conservatives, Neo-Nazis and other fascist slime will likely mobilize and make things worse, and come what may, these scum have to be stopped. Serve The People is committed to anti-fascism and the best force to fight the fascists are the people themselves. If you are sick of this system and of white racists showing their asses contact us and see how you can get involved or come to the Texas State Capital, Saturday November 19th at 11 am sharp; to confront and shut down the “white lives matter” white power rally. There will be only a handful of them so there must be hundreds of us.

Down with phony democracy!
The people’s democracy is in the streets!
To hell with the white racist enemies who run our world!

Read the Writing on the Wall, Fuck you Get Out!

Blue Cat Café Confrontation report 2

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We at Serve the People are proud to stand with Defend Our Hoodz who leads the charge against local gentrification (violent urban removal of the working class). We support and endorse the boycott against Blue Cat Café as we have for over a year. People ask why? We understand that adopting cats is a great thing to do which is enough to earn the establishment an initial amount of support from casual observers, but please look a little closer.

Blue Cat Café sits on top of the ruins of Jumpolin which embodied the culture and climate of the east side when real estate developers illegally demolished it while it was stocked with piñatas. The community wasted no time organizing a boycott of F&F ventures. Rebecca Gray, now owner of Blue Cat, was made completely aware beforehand that anyone doing business with F&F on this site would be targeted. She did not heed the peoples’ warnings and has joined in with the likes of her landlord Jordan French in making wild allegations and hurling racist insults at the Chicano community of the east side.  Some might think that hiding behind some cats can absolve Rebecca Gray, and a very few even cross the picket line to stand up for her, like the neighbor who Rebecca has bribed with free coffee and donuts. It is good for us that the majority of folks are not that cheap and we keep on fighting.

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bccsideSo let’s talk about the cats. The Austin American Statesman wrote in their article yesterday while insinuating that Defend Our Hoodz were responsible for vandalism that “The owner of the Blue Cat Café discovered profane graffiti against “you gentrified scum” on the walls of the building early Friday after vandals glued the doors shut, trapping meowing cats inside the eatery.” This is an effort to get sympathy for Rebecca, not the cats. White people began crying online right away about these poor cats. What we want to know is how this actually put any cats at risk? Were they not left with food? How long did it take Rebecca to get into the building and was every entrance sealed? We highly doubt it. As can be seen while protesting, the place has multiple entry points. But the journalist hacks at The Statesman did not find this fact worth reporting. Not only do we applaud whoever it was who took this action, we hope that many diverse actions are taken against Blue Cat Café by the angry community which it sits upon like a blister. Gentrification is a cancer on this city and we want that cancer cut out by any means necessary, from protest to resistance to revolution. While Rebecca chose to keep her name out of the media because the community hates her so much, those who have actually known Rebecca for a long time have reached out to Serve the People, and we have been told the following from several people who we will not name, including former friends and associates: We have been told that Rebecca hates animals, that she used to casually threaten to poison her neighbor’s dog, that she is so unhinged that people have had to cut her out of their lives completely and that she would not allow one of her roommates to keep her cat at home. These are not the actions of a pet lover; these are the actions of a psycho. Rebecca Gray uses cats first as a gimmick to make money and second to gain sympathy for her despicable and vile behavior.

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At one point during the demonstration Rebecca came out to instigate protesters on camera, she accused one of our comrades of “making death threats” and she called the pigs. The pigs tried to convince the comrade to leave with them but the crowd told them to fuck off. The pigs failed to get even the slightest bit of compelling evidence, proving yet again that Rebecca was crying wolf; she is a liar and a wannabe snitch making shit up for pity and attention. People like that have short and miserable lives and they always catch karma sooner or later, so remember that Rebecca. The protest itself remained energetic and intense, Rebecca called out a small army of cops who eventually hid inside the café while protesters surrounded the windows shouting “cats yes, pigs no!” and “read the writing on the wall, fuck you get out!” The pigs felt the need to come out and tell us they were going to “let” us keep protesting but that we had to stay off the property. When the pigs themselves were shouted down, one of them made a gun hand gesture and a bang noise  while pointing it at an activist. These veiled death threats are nothing new for APD and they got a dose of anti-pig protests that night as chants for David Joseph, Larry Jackson, Byron Carter and others who have been murdered by APD could be heard loud and clear.

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This is what being an enemy of the people looks like; calling pigs to protect Blue Cat

The good news is Blue Cat Café is the only place in East Austin where you can buy an overpriced cup of tea, pet a cat suffering from worms and get a police escort thrown in for free. The Pigs had to escort the customers of Blue Cat past a mob of angry community members to their cars. While we had no intention of doing anything to these patrons past the point of educating them on the boycott, we find that it is important to note that the patrons are usually rich white hipsters or other types of rich white people. Maybe they should get the police to escort them through our neighborhood every time they come here. This was just a case of the settler police forces protecting settlers.

A simple conclusion to this is to ask our readers to become active against Blue Cat Café and anyone else who is part of the process of ripping our communities from under us. Whether you prefer protest or other methods the time is now to strike, picket, protest, resist, and most importantly – rebel!

Join Serve the People and 13 other community organizations who endorse the boycott against Blue Cat Café! Support Defend Our Hoodz and join in the resistance against gentrification. This is not the end but the beginning of a long fight for our homes, communities, culture, and dignity.

Serve the People – Austin
October 22nd, 2016

You can follow Defend Our Hoodz here: http://www.facebook.com/defendourhoodz

Why We Are Boycotting The Elections

While lots of working-class people have already lost interest in voting and know that we need much more than just votes to change this world, we still encounter many questions about our stance. We can address some of those here and hope to get others on board!

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1. Why go so far as a boycott?

The capitalist-imperialist system is one where the ruling class holds all the power, and because of that fact, the only democracy that exists is ruling-class “democracy”: it is democratic only for the ruling class, and workers are not represented. No matter who is elected or what their intentions are or what party they represent, the interests of the very rich owners of industry are always put first.

Many workers are already aware of this fact, so many in fact that this is reflected in the voter turnout of the last presidential elections in 2012, which was somewhere around 54%. The lowest percentage of voters is found in the section of the population making less than $20k per year. The fact that only about half the population even votes, with no indication that this number is growing, means that millions and millions of working-class people do not feel that voting is a productive or useful activity. These people are not wrong. What it means to us is that the masses are losing faith in the electoral system.

One of the main explanations given by people who did not vote but were registered to vote is usually being too busy with work to either follow the political circus closely or make it to the polling station. This is due to the fact that this system makes us break our backs daily with very little to get by on. It then taxes the shit out of us and lets our schools, streets, and houses fall apart. Meanwhile, politicians who pop up on TV tell lie after lie so many times that we have come to just stop listening to them. They make plenty of campaign promises and keep almost none of them. So many people were hopeful that change would come with Obama’s election just to be disappointed when black people were still being killed by police at an escalating rate, US bombs kept falling on the poorest nations on earth, and people continued to be broke and struggling right here.

Whichever party wins—even if their election campaign theatrics vary—their practice once they take office is still the same. The jobs exported under Reagan continued being shipped out by Bush, Clinton, Bush Jr., and Obama. Whether a Democrat or a Republican was in office, US workers lost their jobs and faced harsh welfare cuts and a police force that looked more and more like an army. The military however still manages to receive enormous funding, and the gap between the working people and the rich has only increased. Some people call this “globalization” and blame secret organizations. We say that these groups are not very secret: they are the monopoly capitalist ruling class, who are few in numbers but run the country with a firm grip, and elections are just one way they exert their class dictatorship over the workers. The giant corporations and especially those who head them are engaged in a kind of decaying capitalism that spreads like a plague across the planet in search of profits and cheap resources to steal. When capitalism reaches such a stage it is what we identify as imperialism. US imperialism is the most aggressive in the world and has disastrous effects for workers here and abroad. It cannot be voted out. No matter who you vote for, the ruling class wins. No party running can be an alternative in such a rigged game.

After the same routine every four years with the exact same results, we are fed up with this shit and say enough is enough! We demand real change, which can only come about with an end to capitalism—an end to capitalism that means real democracy, for the majority, not one that is actually only for elite parasites at the top of a predatory food chain called capitalism. Every day we can feel the need for a better world where we can treat one another with love and respect, where we can all be equals. This world is not only possible, it is a necessity—only thing is, you can’t vote for it.

2. The myth that not voting helps the conservatives

There are those out there who are so drunk on voting that they will try and scare or shame others into doing it. They will tell us that by not voting we are allowing the right-wing to win. This is just illogical. Both the so-called left and the right alike use the exact same campaign measures, so not voting does not help or harm one side more than the other. This peer pressure tactic lacks analysis and clear thinking.

Both the major parties and all of the other ones for that matter support capitalism and are essentially the same on all important issues. In this system as we have seen the “third parties” do not stand a chance. This is not due to us not voting but due to the power that corporations and the ruling class possess over this so-called democracy. Even if these third parties stood a chance at winning, they still support capitalism and cannot stop imperialism just by holding office. These politicians are confined by a series of checks and balances that materially prevent them from getting rid of capitalism. Boycotting the elections is the only means at our disposal of breaking with this system, by seeing straight through this mess and identifying the whole system as the enemy.

3. Why we do not run candidates: no candidate can be a revolutionary

It’s simple: revolution means a drastic change, not a little unnoticeable one. Real change, the type this country desperately needs, does not and cannot come from the ballot box. The end of capitalism is what is required, and that requires millions of active participants. The same is true for any reforms. Reforms only happen when the ruling class is forced to act. The action that brings change always, without fail, has come from the people themselves and has been rooted in mass struggle. The capitalists and landlords may need to exploit us to live, but we do not need them at all! Real change comes from mass movements and revolutionary movements only. These movements do force the ruling class to make concessions here and there, but that is not enough, and if we stop struggling they take them back immediately. It will take a real revolution to stop the capitalists for good and liberate the people.

When they are elected all these politicians act the same. They extort taxes, go against the people, and serve their masters. They hurt people to stay in office and make more money for the rich, not just here but around the world. Due to this fact, all change comes from the outside of the electoral system. There are many examples of this. The civil rights movement is one example, where it was obviously the power of the people and not the politicians that made the changes (even though these changes were far from enough).

Revolutions do not fall out of the sky. They do not come from nowhere. They come from the intentional activity of the working class. Revolution requires a full ideological break with the ruling-class “democracy” and the electoral system that is in place. If we put up our own left-wing candidates, that would fail: it would fail to break fully with the ideology of capitalist elections, and it would also fail to help others to make this break as well. It would only add to the confusion. By refusing to help people break with what the capitalists are trying to sell us as “democracy,” we actually would perpetuate their ideology—dragging working-class and oppressed people back into the voting process, back into a system which they have already become disillusioned with and have largely abandoned. Most importantly, election boycotts allow us to organize with those who already see through the sham of capitalist “democracy” rather than pull them back into a system we see as undemocratic.

4. Why we don’t believe in changing the system from the inside

The whole system from the bottom to the top is set up to maintain capitalism. Even if a lot of progressive or “revolutionary” candidates were elected, the gigantic government bureaucracy with its millions of staff and managers and directors would still be in place, keeping things running business as usual—keeping the people down, no matter what. The loyal government staff sharply control the actions of anyone who gets elected. The state also rules through the courts, the police, the military, and the prison system, and none of them would sit idly by as real pro-people reforms were attempted. When socialists have been elected to high positions in countries around the world, they have most often been overthrown by their own military. There are also other things in place that are designed to safeguard capitalism—these include the school system, which insists on teaching racist, capitalist history regardless of the facts. There is a whole ideology of capitalism that rules over us on the TV, in the news, online—and all of them are controlled by corporations and the ruling elite. These servants of the ruling class cannot be voted away, and their power cannot be returned to the people only on the good intentions of a single progressive politician.

The state has one primary function—to serve capitalism, no matter who heads it up. We have never, not even once, seen the system truly change from “working on the inside.” And in almost every case it is the system that changes those who go into it, even those who start with the best intentions.

5. Why we don’t vote for “the lesser of two evils”

It is already evident that all this system offers us is shit, so why should we eat it? While candidates and parties differ on some issues, both operate within the boundaries of what is acceptable to the ruling class—without exception. There is really no lesser evil when both parties agree on robbery and war as a means to sustain capitalism. To vote for “the lesser of two evils,” we would have to sacrifice our politics and principles. We feel that everyone should be honest and open about their politics and not be forced to sacrifice their integrity every four years and cast votes for people who they still consider evil. The goalposts keep moving, and it seems with every four years that past, the lesser of two evils has become just as evil as the greater evil was last time! So we must ask: when the hell are we going to start actually fighting evil?

6. Boycotting vs. doing nothing

The reality is that almost half the population already engage in a passive boycott, just by not voting. This is why we insist on turning this passive boycott into an active boycott. An active boycott is not a call to do nothing: it is most clearly a call to get organized in an active, truly democratic, and revolutionary way. The way we see it, with how little voting has ever accomplished, voting is far closer to doing nothing, while actively organizing a boycott is no small task because it directly confronts and challenges the whole idea of this ruling-class “democracy” with revolutionary activism and revolutionary ideology. In short, we would rather spend our time building for revolution than continue for a moment to pretend the votes they give us mean anything.

Voting once every four years to see which stooge of the rich gets to lord over us is undesirable when it is put next to the unlimited possibility of an organized and militant working class. When we really consider our options we come to the conclusion that it is better to do everything in our power to change this system and not give in to the nothingness of voting.

7. The myth that only privileged people do not vote

Capitalism and its supporting structures—sexism, racism, and white supremacy—are what keep privilege intact, so only what stands in opposition to capitalism has any chance of restricting or abolishing privilege, domination, and exploitation. While voting alone cannot result in any serious changes, mass struggle will, and that is exactly what we are promoting by supporting a boycott.

On the contrary, we feel that those who are comfortable enough with the way things are have a certain amount of privilege that allows them to feel secure with the extremely limited methods the system offers. For poor working people and specific oppressed groups, voting does not offer liberation, security, or equality. So it is mostly white middle-class people who have enough privilege to rely exclusively on voting. The rest of us have to struggle a lot harder for something better.

8. How is boycotting any better?

While we do not think that boycotting the vote by itself will offer up any significant change—this boycott is part of a much larger strategy. Most importantly, it offers us a chance to promote an ideological break with this system, its elections, and its phony democracy. It offers us the opportunity to organize with others in the interest of building a real revolutionary movement that neither relies on nor operates within the perimeters of what is acceptable to the rich. It expresses our issues in a way that does not seek the approval of those who would keep us down. We see no need to appeal to the oppressor. The boycott is just one small aspect of our work. It is the start of something, not the end of it. We also actively run pop-up free stores and free food and grocery programs, and we are engaged in a number of pro-people activities, and we never ask for permission from this crooked system of the criminals at its helm. We are building people power every day and helping the working people in the city break from depending for their basic survival on the exact same system that keeps people down. Again, this system needs us, but we do not need it. There are so many organizations that put their own agendas before what the people need, but the people are our only agenda. We are not asking for votes, and we are not trying to sell anything.

9. On the question of throwing away our votes

Again, in actuality, we are expressing our anger much more clearly than voting—we are expressing an anger not just at the way these electoral politics work only for the rich but also at the whole system and at the rich themselves. We encourage a full break with this system—not casting blank votes, not voting for mock candidates who cannot win, and not writing in the names of people who do not exist. We are choosing to not vote because voting in any way gives legitimacy to a system that half the population already sees as illegitimate. We refuse to vote for an evil. We refuse to vote for the Green Party or a “socialist,” because all of them would be throwing away our votes. We are choosing to not vote because voting has lost meaning to us and has come to mean participation in this bogus system. By choosing to not vote, we demand revolutionary change and start out on that course. When we do finally vote, it will not be to toss our choice away on someone who could not care less about people and only cares about profit; when we do finally vote it will mean something, because it will be in a radical new revolutionary society where the workers are on top.

Contact Serve the People – Austin to see how you can get involved!

servethepeopleaustin@gmail.com

(512) 522-9032

Protest the pig pizza party! Solidarity with Charlotte, and justice for Keith L Scott!

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[Español abajo]

The cops who beat our heads in, arrest us, harass, abuse and kill our working class people are trying to buy the people off with free pizza. They are having an event called “pizza with a cop”. We serve food in this park every sunday and all these pigs do is ruin peoples lives.

We are going to protest their crimes against the people by giving away free food and free pizza to the community, so that no one has to lose their appetite by eating with a pig. We aim to see the neighborhood safe from the pigs and call for a cop free park. Please come out and let these pigs know they are not welcome in the hood. Bring signs, banners, noise makers, pots pans etc. If they wont give us peace we wont give them peace! Fuck The Police!

Serve The People, Stop The Pigs!

After Friday–when bloodthirsty pigs were caught on video in Tulsa, OK, murdering Terence Crutcher, an unarmed black man with his hands in the air–yesterday in Charlotte, NC, pigs shot and killed another black man, Keith Lamont Scott, despite the fact that, as his family says, he was armed with only a book.

Hundreds of people in Charlotte, fed up with the brutal pig occupying army, took to streets and blocked off Interstate 85. Despite the pigs’ military-style repression tactics of riot gear, tear gas, and flash grenades, the people kept pushing back, throwing rocks, lighting fires, and injuring twelve pigs. We say hell yeah! It is more than right to rebel against the pigs–it is necessary for us to get out of this bullshit!

The pigs in Austin are just as murderous. As we protest the pigs’ attempts to buy off the community with nothing more than a few pizzas tomorrow, we must ask, are Byron Carter, Larry Jackson, David Joseph, and Nathaniel Sanders invited for pizza? Hell no they aren’t, they were murdered by APD in cold blood. We protest in solidarity with the people of Charlotte and say that it is great to resist, but we must also do more–we need to build our own revolutionary people’s organizations that can help resolve problems in the community, made up of regular people and accountable to the people–not to the bosses, landlords, and their crony politicians who live large while we break our backs every day just to live.

Los policías que nos golpean, acostan, abusan y matan a nuestra gente de la clase trabajadora están tratando de comprarnos con pizza gratis. Están teniendo un evento llamado “pizza con un policía”. Nosotros servimos comida en este parque todos los domingos y lo único que estos cerdos hacen es arruinar las vidas de nuestra gente.

Los cerdos creen que pueden abusar a la comunidad y luego comprarnos pizza y todo estará resuelto. El jueves a las 530 estamos protestando contra los cerdos @ Montopolis Recreation Center (1200 Montopolis Dr). Vengan a decirles que vemos a través de sus mentiras y a comer nuestra pizza + comida en lugar de la suya!

Tambien estamos protestando en solidaridad con la gente en Charlotte, donde ayer, en sangre fria, los cerdos asesinaron a Keith Lamont Scott, un hombre negro armado con solamente un libro.

Join Us at Our Next Community Meeting!

We’ve been hearing a lot of folks in the neighborhood express an anti-voting sentiment.  The state would tell you that not voting makes you apolitical or lazy, we say why waste your time voting when the ground if fertile for true revolutionary change. Come join us at our next community meeting where we will all get together and share our ideas and strategies to continue the anti-voting campaign and formulate how to get the people involved in change through action.

 

Saturday, Sept. 17th @ 6:00pm in Montopolis Park

Our new zine: Know Your Enemy/ Why There Are No Good Cops

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Serve the People Austin has written and is in the process of publishing a new zine in response to the overwhelming concern from the people we serve in Montopolis about the police presence and brutality. This zine was a concerted effort on our part to assert our position on the police and why we stand firmly against them and with the people. This piece also touches upon grappling with the question of boycotting and replacing the police in our communities. We don’t have all the answers, experience, or resources to make these things possible at the snap of the of a finger- this is something that will require lots of community cooperation and collaboration but we believe it is absolutely necessary if we wish to see radical change in our neighborhoods. Contact us for a physical copy [free for folks in Austin] We will be posting sections of this zine to our blog and facebook from time to time.

Section 1:

Know your enemy! Why there are no good cops.

Anyone who has had to deal with the police, either directly themselves or indirectly through having family members locked up, can attest that something as small as a traffic stop can range from traumatic up to deadly, if you get the wrong cop. From this understanding some of us in the community have begun to see the necessity of knowing our rights. What happens, though, when knowing your rights is not enough? Let’s not forget the case of Philando Castile, a black man who was murdered by the police in Minnesota on July 6th of this year. Philando knew his rights, including his constitutional second amendment right to conceal and carry a handgun, which he had a license for. Knowing his rights did not prevent the pigs from shooting him to death on camera in a car with his girlfriend and her four-year-old child. This man was executed for being black—that’s about how much the enemy values our so-called rights. So when knowing our rights is not enough, the next step is knowing our enemy! There are two fundamental categories in society: the people—which includes everyone who can come together for justice, freedom, and equality; and the enemy—those who do their best to prevent the people from having justice, freedom, and equality. We can say that in this capacity, the police are most certainly the enemy.

Why there are no good cops

The police must be understood as an organized force, unlike civilians and the people we meet, who we must see as individuals. The police serve a specific interest, and they emerged in specific conditions. The police are an institution of power, and the issues with the police cannot be reduced to just “bad apples” or “bad training.” As an institution, all police unions and police departments are set up to protect the individual officers and the government that employs them, so it’s no longer about the cop’s personal attitude or disposition. There may be cops out there who were not bad people when they joined and may not otherwise be bad people outside of their duties, but their role as police is fundamentally always a negative one. To better understand this we must understand the emergence of police in society and what purpose they always serve.

The police as the force as we know them today emerged in England and the United States between 1825 and 1855; they were called forth and organized by the ruling class (the rich and elite) to deal with new conditions that posed a threat to their power. In England and the northern United States this threat came in the form of organized and striking workers in large factories during the industrial revolutions, while in the southern United States the police were organized to capture escaped slaves. In neither case were the police intended to reduce crime. The ruling class then and now is composed of the few—the rich few—who by themselves cannot contend with large crowds or sections of the population who are prone to rebellion, uprisings, and class struggle. The police were made up of sections of the working class who took up the job of the ruling class as armed administrators of violence, violence that, then and now, has the purpose of keeping power seated in the hands of the elite and out of the reach of everyday people. Over time, aspects of policing have changed, but the purpose of policing and the relationship the pigs have to the working class are exactly the same. The relationship between black and brown people and the police has never been good. Just as one section of the working class took up jobs as pigs for the rich, sections of the black and brown working class have now also taken up jobs as pigs—pigs whose ultimate purpose in protecting the status quo means populating and filling the prisons with their own people. The police as individuals are traitors to their people and traitors to their class, and as an institution they are the first line of defense for the corporate interests of the ruling elite. They are concretely the enemy of the people.

The police—who we more honestly call pigs—have a specific role in oppressed communities of majority black and brown people. The United States was founded on stolen land and built up on the backs of enslaved Africans; these crimes against the people have never been accounted for and provide the basis for the present-day USA. The crimes committed against the black and brown communities have left deep scars, and in order to legitimize and normalize these crimes, the affected communities have been kept for the most part to the margins. The vast majority in these communities were turned into workers in the worst and lowest-paying jobs, the infrastructure in the communities has been neglected, and ghettos have been created. With this kind of isolation, segregation, and poverty, crime is inevitable. So the police themselves become an external and occupying force. Like a foreign military unit which has invaded an area, the pigs are on edge, as they know full well that they are the enemy of the people. This is why they are so quick to go to extreme violence in carrying out their illegitimate work: they are aware of their role and are instinctively on guard. They come in with body armor, rifles, and dogs, prepared for war—and it’s a war they continue to wage against us. We have to see it as a war too, or else we stay stuck on the wrong end of the stick. If you doubt this for a moment, try and recall the sick feeling we get in our guts the minute those lights start to flash—this is a feeling that is rooted in our lack of power, our lack of control over the situation, and sometimes a fear for our lives and the lives of our loved ones. Let that panic remind you that these people are not our friends. When a police siren goes off we know that someone’s life is about to take a turn for the worse.

This profit-driven system we live in—capitalism—maintains its rule in two basic ways. First, through ideology and the lie that it is natural and has always been in human nature to be greedy. Second, through direct control and repression. The modern state, much like the police, was constructed in the interest of maintaining the wealth of the ruling class by imposing their order on the working class. The state requires a monopoly on violence to protect the rich from the poor, and to keep us going to work so they can extract profits from our labor. The police are the front guard as a repressive machine of the state. They are the strong arm, the grip around our necks reminding us constantly that our choices are submitting to domination, death, or imprisonment.

The primary function of the police as an institution is repressive, regardless of individual intent. That being said, the police also require the backup of ideology, and they do this in a few clear ways. They perpetuate and spread the myth that it is only “a few bad apples,” and they will even pass the blame to city government, state funding, or countless other places, all to throw people off the scent of what the police actually do in a capitalist society. The police use after-school programs, reform-seeking activists, and the community itself as tools to present a myth of legitimacy. We are indoctrinated into this kind of thinking from a very early age—the police need us to think that we need them, that they are heroes. When bullets, batons, tear gas, and even tanks fail, the pigs will use parades, social functions, toy drives, and barbecues to try to whitewash their rotten complexion of brutality and violence, like makeup over an infected wound. The wound still seeps through, and we must not be taken in by their sweet talk.

The police are well versed in the tactics of war, and they use two types of approaches—soft (or low-intensity tactics) and hard (or aggressive tactics), which use slightly different means for accomplishing the same goal, which is social control for the ruling class. Low-intensity warfare relies more on public image and ideas about the police; they will take a hands-off approach or even be polite—up until they decide that you are in their way. We see the hard approach with the escalating transformation of the police into a military-like force, heavy-handed riot control tactics, and the brutality and racism of racial profiling. The laws simply do not apply to them—they are the law.

Blue Cat Cafe Confrontation Report

Serve the People – Austin is honored to support Defend Our Hoodz – Defiende El Barrio – Austin. On 7/15/16 we watched the community come together for another picket of the Blue Cat Cafe. What does it mean when gentrification businesses cross a community boycott? It means we resist and we rebel! It means that Blue Cat Cafe and its owner Rebecca Gray were forced to hire a private armed security to defend her and defend her event from the local community, while we defended the hood in service of the people. All over the world white settlers on stolen land employ armed guards: private armies to protect them from the wrath and righteous anger of the masses. From East Austin to the West Bank, their mentality is the same. However we are undeterred and each time a picket of Blue Cat Cafe takes place it grows, both in numbers attending as well as in the level of anger felt by the community. We intend to stand beside DOH until Blue Cat closes its doors for good, no matter how many thugs in uniform she hires, and no matter how many calls she issues on Facebook to have her supporters “sharpen their pitchforks.”

The Cat Cafe not only seeks to whitewash gentrification by posing as a progressive business but by also placing cats above human beings; to them, housing stray cats is a decent excuse for making many on the East Side homeless, by Blue Cat Cafe participating in the violent process of gentrification. Their event was framed as a “kitty wonderland,” a wonderland they intended to build on the ruins of our community. This is a micro version of Austin itself, which is built on stolen indigenous land. A place where fully grown adults dressed up as cats and stroked each others’ egos behind a wall of armed guards…. When DOH and members of STP arrived on the scene that would all change. The Blue Cat Cafe event would soon lose a large number of its attendance, those who left knew that supporting such an event against the will of the people was not a good look and they vacated the contested ground where Jumpolin once stood as soon as they were informed by the protesters that this event was under a community boycott. The “wonderland” turned into a nightmare.

Cars honked in support of the picket and a few people even pulled over, grabbed signs, and joined in the demonstration. Youth from the community whose families have been displaced or threatened with removal stepped up and took the megaphone, leading chants and speaking their minds.

Several white tourists even decided to spend their vacations sightseeing some place else that was not being targeted by angry demonstrators. Others upon receiving information pamphlets got back in their cars and left. At another point, one of the paid security guards spoke of her working class origins and how she agreed with the demonstration and wanted to return to nursing school and give up the trade that she found herself in. Other passersby stopped, talked, and were informed about both Defend Our Hoodz and Serve the People. As the sun began to go down the energy of the crowd started to go up; our voices could be heard from blocks away disturbing and denouncing the event from its start to its finish. They should know damn well that we will never give them peace if their wonderland is built on the ruins of our community. Later on in the evening popular protest developed into what we call a struggle session. Pressure from the picket became too much for scumbag, racist scab Rebecca Gray to handle, and she was seen sitting on the porch of her food trailer crying, with her wonderland ruse a bust. To the workers at the BCC, the crowd outside began yelling “Strike! Strike! Strike!” This became too much for her to bear in silence. Community activists did not relent and did not for a moment get fooled by Rebecca’s crocodile tears. So she went to find stress relief in a bottle of liquor. Moments later Rebecca returned to the scene all sauced up on fool’s courage and reeking of vodka… this did not work in her favor either, and things escalated. Rebecca is a sloppy drunk, a bad business owner, and a very troubled human being. We sincerely hope she abandons her current lifestyle of making enemies of the people and finds some safe place to dry out. Things became a bit odd when she suddenly and drunkenly threw herself on the ground asking activists in the community to spit on her, while spreading her legs and making lewd sexual gestures… what kind of wonderland are you into Rebecca? The community activists were not there to indulge in her strange and unwelcome fantasies, we were there to struggle against gentrification which is what we did. Her attention-seeking and embarrassing attempt at public masturbation blew up in her face as she was soon surrounded by angry protesters. The people gave her a piece of their minds as she was shouted at, criticized, and denounced. In front of her vendors, employees, and all those protesting, she laid on the ground silently crying, drunken, and demoralized. 

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Rebecca Gray (owner of Blue Cat Cafe) humiliates herself in front of a group of protesters and her employees

Why do we not pity Rebecca Gray? Because she knowingly participates in violent and racist gentrification, because she insists on abusive business practice, because she is a boss and not a worker, and because she mocks the suffering of the people who we serve. We can say it simply: if you go against the people, you get run over by the people, and we will not be swayed by fake white tears from a sloppy drunk.

There are those that say we are not doing the right thing by targeting local business owners—let us not forget that Jumpolin was a local family business with roots in the community of the East Side and that it was demolished with all its merchandise inside so that rich white people could sip tea next to a fucking cat. To make matters worse, Jordan French called the family “cockroaches,” and Rebecca herself has slandered the owners of Jumpolin by calling them “criminals.” Get this straight, there are criminals here and it is all those who engage in anti-people activity, all those like Jordan and Rebecca who wield white supremacy and capitalism against the working class and community business owners who have been friends to the people. This is not just a matter of us vs. Blue Cat, this is a matter of the people vs. this racist and exploitative system. This is the haves vs. the have-nots. One day the people will rise up and knock their whole class down and we will struggle on so that they cannot get back up.

As one comrade said on the bullhorn last night, “someone once said that capitalism calls forth its own grave diggers; congratulations Rebecca, you have called forth yours.” If the picket was traumatic for Rebecca or the supporters that she has left, then they must come to terms with the reality of the matter: that there is no peace on stolen land, that this community was here first, that these sites hold precious memories for the people, and that the whole experience of displacement, demolitions, and gentrification is traumatic for us. This was only a small taste of what is to come and no amount of security or pigs can protect this capitalist system from the wrath of the people!

All power to the working class!

Get involved with Defend Our Hoodz and Serve the People – Austin! Help us continue and escalate this struggle against poverty and gentrification.


Serve The People – Austin