Filler – June 2017
“US QUEERS AIN’T FREE TIL THE PRISON WALLS BURN DOWN”
~ photo: banner from an Illegal Queers PGH benefit dance party ~
Every year on June 11th, anarchists and anti-authoritarians from around the world send some love and rage to our comrades who are serving lengthy prison terms. We write letters, we organize poetry readings and movie screenings, we throw parties and benefit shows, we ditch work and school to paint our comrades’ names all across town, we attack state and corporate infrastructure as much for the thrill of it as for the political and strategic implications. On J11, we remember the prisoners of war. With their names on our minds, we face the anxiety and misery of the everyday with just a little more strength, a little more passion… because, like, holy shit, prisons are fucking evil, and maybe our thoughts and actions might just sneak a few rays of light through the bars and help our comrades face another day too.
On that note, a couple of us queer-as-fuck Filler kids want to remind our friends here in Pittsburgh that J11 would never have become the insurgent holiday that it is today without the courage of long-term anarchist prisoner, Marius Mason. Marius is an eco-warrior whose daily life is one of struggle against a state that seeks to control his body on every level, from his incarceration to the undermining of his gender identity. This year, we hope that Pittsburgh will prove that we have not forgotten his struggle.
This year, we hope that Pittsburgh will affirm our complicity in not only Marius’s struggle, but also in the struggles of all who come into conflict with the state and capital. So in the spirit of J11, let’s support our neighbors who are challenging the co-optation of Pittsburgh Pride, organizing to support incarcerated people at the Allegheny County Jail while working towards the jail’s abolition, and rallying to defend their communities against the nationalist reaction. Most importantly, we sincerely hope you remember to indulge your private wars. Do what you need to do to reconnect to life: attack the things you hate, embrace the people and hobbies you love, call in sick and stay at home all day to write letters to the folks on the inside while you binge-watch netflix (or Sub.Media!) – take whatever it is that you love, nurture it, and make it dangerous.
Anyways, below is an (in)complete rundown of some cool shit to do this week.
Welcome home Maxx and Shea. Much love to Top Squat. Shoutout to Torchlight.
Fire to ALL prisons!
Friday, June 9th
This past Saturday, Joel Velasquez-Reyes died at the ACJ, awaiting charges. Velasquez-Reyes is the third death at the ACJ since April, both Jamie Gettings and David Black’s deaths could have been prevented.
Join us as we speak truth to power and demand an end to medical neglect and to the Allegheny County Jail.
#AbolishACJ #FireTheWarden #NoBarsToHealthcare
Radicals in Pittsburgh are facing an unprecedented wave of repression: hundreds of felony charges, several eviction threats, etc. etc. etc….so some folks decided it’d be fun to get together and celebrate our struggles over some vegan food! We’re in this together, so let’s soak up some sun together (weather depending).
If you or your comrades and accomplices are feeling the heat, ask around or hit us up for the time and location!
Click HERE to donate to various legal defense funds.
Saturday, June 10th
People are asking if they should be boycotting CERTAIN Pittsburgh Pride events, which we feel would be ineffective since –
1. Most non-profit orgs spent time and energy raising money to participate in what should be a free event, and have the right to get value for that cost (since obviously no refunds will be given).
2. It’s counterproductive to miss out on the opportunity to reach out to the community non-profit orgs are trying to serve.
3. The presence of a few individuals or a small organization might not be missed, but showing UP will show strength in numbers, which also sends the larger message of how many LGBTQ+ individuals, supporters, and allies there are in Pittsburgh (which is one of the actual reasons to have Pride events in the first place).
4. It’s not fair to every single person who worked hard and waited all year to come together with their community only to feel guilty or bad for participating. Instead we are going to show SIGNS OF RESISTANCE. We invite everyone to “GREY OUT RAINBOW CAPITALISM” and show solidarity, strength and unity by wearing GREY tshirts, armbands, hats, bandanas, suits, socks- whatever. WEAR YOUR GREY and spread the message that although you might be in the parade, or at the event, YOU ARE NOT IN LINE with the organizers of the EQT-sponsored march. We will be showing up for what PRIDE means to YOU and not we are being told it should mean. GRAB SOME GREY AND SPREAD THE WORD.
Our Pride should not be about who can pay the highest price.
Pride is political. Pride should be for everyone. Pride needs to be inclusive, intersectional and wholly accessible to all. Pride should be free (for non-profits to participate specifically, not necessarily food, drinks/specialty events). Pride should be a celebration of how far we have come from the time we were forced to live in a closet. Pride should be a reflection of our history as well as an effort to move forward. It is up to us as a community to make the change.
Be proud, come on out and join your community at (mostly) free, local, independent Pride events:
Veil of Remembrance– Steel City Sisters
Roots Pride: Final Edition with Junglepussy & Co.
Freedom! Renaissance City Choir Pride Concert
Express Yourself: A Resistance Workshop with Hello Mr.
Smoke and Mirrors OUT Loud Kick-Off: Reflections Meal
Smoke and Mirrors-Penn OUT Loud Art Crawl
Queer Craft Market
Free Pride Shorts
Peoples Pride March 2k17
Join the ACJ Health Justice Project in our first screening of No Bars to Healthcare-A grassroots effort to end abuse at one county jail.
For more than two years, the Health Justice Project has been collecting stories and evidence against the medical neglect and abuse at the Allegheny County Jail (ACJ). This film offers a snapshot of some of those stories. It is a film that will move you, make you angry, and, above all, challenge you to envision a future without the ACJ.
We will screen the film and facilitate a discussion on prison and jail abolition afterward.
*Suggested $5-10 donation, no one turned away.
*This facility is not wheelchair accessible
If you can’t make this screening, we will have another in July-stay tuned!
Sunday, June 11th
JUNE 11TH MARCH & PICNIC
UNTIL EVERYONE’S FREE BENEFIT
Wednesday, June 14th
Pittsburgh has a deep and rich social movement history. While we our city is probably best known as the cradle of the American labor movement, important moments in the civil rights, women’s movement, and environmental movement have all played out in Pittsburgh.
And Pittsburgh’s social movement legacy isn’t just distant history. In recent years, Pittsburghers played a significant role in the opposition to the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. When the G20 came to our city we rose against the corrupt and unjust policies that led to the financial crisis. We occupied People’s Park for months, we took to the streets again and again to stand up against racist policing, and we were the first city in the country to ban fracking.
Join us on June 14th to take a look at Pittsburgh’s deep and rich social movement history and tease out the lessons our past can share with today’s movements.
Mijente in Pittsburgh: Community Dinner + Discussion
You’re invited to join us for a night of food and discussion about key topics that are important to the Latinx community in Pittsburgh as well as nationally with Mijente. Mijente is a national political home for on the ground and digital Latinx organizing. In this political moment, the hate and the attacks against Latinx and immigrant communities are being widely felt. We know that there are a lot of questions, a lot of fear and a lot of pain. At the same time we know that the only safe community is an organized one. Some of the best ways to win and resist the attacks coming from the white house are to fight back and organize.
Join us for an evening of community building and discussion w/ Mijente as well as local leaders from Casa San Jose.
Están invitadxs a una cena y platica comunitaria donde hablaremos sobre temas importantes para la comunidad Latinx en Pittsburgh y también a nivel nacional con el grupo Mijente. Mijente es un hogar politico a nivel nacional con membresía de gente Latinx y que se enfoca en la organización comunitaria. En este momento politico el odio y los ataques en contra la comunidad Latinx e inmigrante son fuertes. Sabemos que hay muchas preguntas, mucho miedo y mucho dolor. Al mismo tiempo, sabemos que la una comunidad realmente segura es una comunidad organizada. Solo luchando podremos ganar y resistir los ataques que vienen de la casa blanca.
Vengan a compartir y platicar en comunidad para seguir creciendo nuestro poder y conocimiento con Mijente y lideres de Casa San Jose.
THIS SUMMER, Port Authority plans to have ARMED police Officers checking fare payment on the T…..
We demand that the Port Authority delay implementation of this policy until we have a PUBLIC process, a commitment NOT to work with ICE, and a commitment of NO arrests or criminal charges for “fare evasion.”
Join Pittsburghers for Public Transit, Casa San Jose, the Alliance for Police Accountability and the Thomas Merton Center to find out how to get involved to stop the criminalization of transit riders.
Proceeds go to the touring bands, expenses, and donations to the O.W.L. Non-Profit to help with expenses for the property (garden supplies, raising chickens, water sources, etc)
Music! Food! Art! Poetry! Workshops! Zines! Sideshows! Fire Performance! Good Folks!
Out of Towners:
Rail Yard Ghosts (USA)
Mama’s Broke (Canada)
Breaking Glass (NYC)
Erica Russo (Asheville, NC)
Ricky Steece (NOLA)
Endless Mike (Johnstown, PA)
Nomad Mountain Outlaws (USA)
#Trashhags Tradhaggis (USA)
Michael Character (Boston)
Roaming Bear (Waukegan, IL)
Mud Guppies (Philly)
River Bucket (Missouri)
Canadian Waves (Columbus, OH)
Chessie and the Kittens (DuBois, PA)
Cowabunga Breakfast (DuBois, PA)
Rent Strike (USA)
Conor Brendan and the Wild Hunt (USA)
The Hills and the Rivers
The Jack of Spades
Mayday Marching Band
Sikes and the New Violence
Shelf Life Trio
Colin and the Crows
My Yr An Odd Fellow
– Know Your Rights (When Dealing with Police) Training
– Permaculture / Herbal Medicines Workshop
– Free Store / Clothing Swap
– Book Drive
– Open Mic
– Filler Zine Distro