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Action Alerts

Dineh families requesting direct on-land support

For four decades, the Dineh communities of Black Mesa have fought to stop the U.S government and Peabody Energy Company's exploitation of their homelands and communities. Today, families remain, steadfastly resisting the mine, colonialism, and forced relocation. 

In the words of one resister, "WE NEED YOUR PHYSICAL PRESENCE OUT HERE, ASAP! WE don't ask for monies, just your good-spirited will to come out for a few days/weeks/months and immerse yourself into a cultural community under threat, and accept the daily challenges in supporting these native elders' existence. And yes, we are not asking for monies because we wish to maintain that human sovereignty, and not seek lawyers or travels to far off cities to protest."

You are being invited to the resistance communities' lands to support their resistance and deter governmental and corporate harassment.

Support the Unist'ot'en Encampment

Members of the Wet'suwet'en clan are re-occupying their land to stop an array of oil and gas pipelines planned for that area without their permission.

As political prisoner David Gilbert (among many others) has pointed out, it's important that our local struggles take inspiration from and lend our strength to global struggles, especially those struggles led by indigenous people and people of color.

RAMPS has supported the Unist'ot'en encampment financially and by volunteering, and we call on our friends and allies to do the same.

Drone Footage of Spruce #1 MTR site
"WE ARE THE STORM" CultureStrike and Justseeds Artists’ Cooperative: Art print portfolio highlights the resistance and resilience of communities under threat by climate change.
Youth Engagement Project
Kanawha Forest Coalition
Honoring the Waters ceremony and candlelight vigil in Charleston, WV.

2017 End of Year Update

posted by admin, Wednesday, December 27th, 2017
 

 

              Happy New Year!                        

2017 has been a busy year for us. We’ve worked hard to cultivate resistance and community support in the face of growing threats like fascist, white supremacist organizations, increased repression of radical activism and all the other fucked up shit that has escalated this year.  Our work continues to change and expand with the shifting political landscape. Here’s a recap of what we’ve been up to this year and what we hope to do in 2018:

Here in Whitesville…
We’ve made significant progress turning a vacant lot into a community garden. With help from Whitesville residents, we’ve planted medicinal herbs, added raised beds, built a rain catchment system for watering, and started terracing the hillside.  When spring comes, we hope to fill the raised beds with vegetables, plant more flowers and herbs on the hill, and plant some fruit trees.  We also look forward to working with our friends Aurora Lights  Herbal Medics again to bring another free herbal and alternative health clinic to Whitesville in 2018.
We are constantly engaged in mutual aid work with neighbors in Whitesville- from helping folks heat their homes, to giving people rides to doctor’s appointments or the grocery store. Our community house is a place where neighbors and visitors come to share a meal, get help with school work, or find emotional support. We feel it is an important space in this chaotic community where so many people face depression, drug addiction, violence, and physical ailments. In the past year, we’ve also provided medical support by hosting and caring for neighbors with serious medical conditions.

 

In “West Virginia”…
We’ve continued our involvement with communities beyond Whitesville as well. We have supported the Stanley Heirs families on Kayford mountain as they carry on the legacy of legendary land defender Larry Gibson. This year we set up and maintained a rain catchment system on Kayford for drinking water and hosted our annual Fall Summit in the park (thanks again to partners Seeds of Peace and the Ohio Valley Environmental Coalition!). We’ve also maintained our long standing relationship with Prenter, a nearby community severely impacted by mining. This year residents have been forced to run a diesel generator to power the pumping station providing their tap water, though this water is still not clean enough to drink- it is mainly used for washing. While they are hoping they will have access to city water some time in 2018, in the meantime, we will soon launch a fundraiser to help them pay for the diesel fuel. Stay tuned! In addition, we continue to write letters, keep up relationships and advocate for people who are incarcerated throughout the state.
Appalachia…
As fascism grew on a national level in 2017, the threat of fascist and racist organizations within our region specifically- including militias and white supremacist political parties- has risen dramatically. Some of these dangerous groups see Appalachia as an ideal place to establish a “white homeland” and have been working to organize and expand here. We’ve worked with local and regional allies to confront these enemies in the streets of Pikeville, KY; Charleston, WV; and Charlottesville, VA. As an outgrowth of those efforts, we’ve helped establish the “Holler Network”, an Appalachian antifascist network with members throughout the region. This network was instrumental this fall in providing community-based self-defense when black radical artist John Sims came to Athens, OH to lecture and exhibit his work. In the coming year, we will continue to confront the fascists wherever they appear in our region and build the Holler network through trainings, outreach, and direct action to destroy fascism in the streets and the hollers of Appalachia.
 –
Broader Movement Support…
Indigenous solidarity continues to be at the forefront of our work. We are on stolen land! Members of RAMPS spent several months in North Dakota this winter and spring providing legal support to water protectors fighting the Dakota Access pipeline. We also set up jail and legal support for actions throughout Appalachia and hope to continue this work in the coming year (and to provide trainings to folks who are interested!). This summer, RAMPS members supported the Pokanoket Nation’s occupation of part of their ancestral land in an attempt to force Brown University to return it to them. We will continue to support indigenous-led resistance!
 

To continue our efforts into 2018, we’re asking folks to consider donating here. Thanks to all those who donated their time or money (or anything else!) to support us in 2017!

Feel free to get in touch ([email protected]) or stop by if you find yourself in southern WV! We (almost) always need volunteers- please reach out if that’s something you might be interested in.

For the land and people,
RAMPS

This year’s Fall Summit schedule!

There must be resistance!

posted by admin, Tuesday, April 11th, 2017
 

You Are Invited to Stand Up Against The Nazi Threat!

Thanks to artist Jimbo Valentine

Spring is here! As ramps pop up throughout the hollers, our work continues on multiple fronts. Here’s what we’ve been up to.

Solidarity with Standing Rock: The Legal Battle Continues

RAMPS members have been intimately involved in the resistance at Standing Rock for much of the last nine months. We have supported direct action, helped maintain the camps, and now we are working in solidarity with water protectors who were arrested while defending sacred water. The legal battle in North Dakota is only just beginning as the frontlines move to the courtroom. Only a fraction of nearly 800 cases have been tried before the courts and several cases have already been dismissed! Water protectors are increasingly facing trumped-up felony and federal charges. We are committed to supporting our comrades as they face the oppressive criminal justice system and we hope that such support becomes an integral part of all our movements in this era of increased repression of activists.

The Nazis Are Coming. For Real.

At the end of April, the Traditional Workers Party (TWP) and other neo-Nazi, white supremacist factions will be descending on Appalachia. They plan to hold an organizing conference on April 28 and a large public rally on April 29 in eastern Kentucky.  We fear this is a crucial moment for the white supremacist movement in this country and more specifically, central Appalachia.  They are converging in Appalachia to capitalize on fear, uncertainty, and economic deprivation and to recruit, train, organize and spread their hateful doctrine. There must be resistance!   We are part of building a larger Appalachian anti-fascist network for the long haul. You are invited to come show the Nazis that they are not welcome.

Community Engagement

As we fight the rise of fascism and white supremacy and face a swarm of Nazis coming to our region, building community power in Whitesville remains at the center of our work. At the RAMPS house we consistently discuss this dark political climate with folks.  We talk about indigenous solidarity, sovereignty and our work in Standing Rock; we talk about the role the criminal justice system plays in the lives of young people in this region; we talk about the racist, fascist policies of Trump; we talk about white supremacy and now we’re talking a lot about the Nazis coming to Appalachia.  It felt good to see one of our young friends write ‘Fuck Trump 2k16’ in the snow on car windows throughout Whitesville this winter and it always brings us a smile to see the ever-changing “Fuck Trump” art on the dry erase boards around the house.

In addition to these conversations, we work to provide alternatives to organizations like TWP that prey on youth in largely white, rural areas like ours.  Our young friends have been learning to read and learning to drive with us, and we’re all excited to be spending more time growing the community garden, foraging in the mountains and planning Whitesville’s second herbal health clinic, which will take place July 25-28.

Thanks for all the support!  It makes what we do possible!  Feel free to get in touch, drop by, or donate to support our work!

For the land and people, #PunchANazi,

RAMPS

Thanks to Jimbo Valentine for the amazing anti-Nazi poster!  We’ve been hanging it up around town, if you would like a digital copy, please get in touch.

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Ramps Campaign shared Appalachians Against Pipelines's photo.
Ramps Campaign

Be Like Nutty!From Nutty: If you're reading this, it means the monopod blockade is no more.

We knew it couldn't last forever. That's how this works.

If we rely on one location, one tactic, or one group of people to stop this pipeline, we will fail. But we're not. I know that as this one facet of the struggle draws to conclusion, more people in other places are gaining momentum. The fire has already caught; we must not let it die.

It was a painful decision, to come down.

The food ran out on May 19th. The water is still plentiful, but as fern defends this same road, a few more days of growing weaker before starting the process of recovering from this and figuring out other ways to fight don't make sense to me.

And yet I don't know how I can explain this to you in a way that won't seem like a defeat. I can only remind you, and remind myself, that this was never about one action, but about a multifaceted struggle that will continue in each of us who tries to act, to live each moment in defiance of all that would make us silent, obedient, governable.

Yesterday, I knew it was the last night I would spend here. I looked up at the stars and the moon, at the leaves lit by floodlights, looking for the right words but finding only the hardness in my throat and tears in my eyes at what they will do to this piece of road when I am gone, at all the countless struggles that end in mourning and in loss.

This morning I tried to listen for what it was I should say in the harshly beautiful calls of ravens, and came up with the same answer: that words are not enough. No words can speak the full truth of eight weeks spent here. No matter what I make of them, my words cannot conjure fire.

If they have fed some flame already in you, then they have done their work. If they can call forward to me, in times to come when I want to give in and hide from everything, then they will have done all that I can hope for. I am leaving with a promise, a commitment born of long days and nights lying over forty feet up in a monopod and of twenty-two years learning that I exist within a civilization that I would rather die fighting than live quietly within. This is a battle happening everywhere, and I want to keep finding my place in it.

For the moment, in the wild and beautiful terrain of Appalachia, we are still here. They're still trying to put a pipeline through.

So let's keep learning from each other what is possible, build skills, experiment with tactics. Let's build up our defenses against those who would constrain us.

If anyone was still unsure before, events thus far should have shown us that the cops and the state stand where they have always stood: on the side of the powerful, of exploitation, of turning land and water into profit.

Let's dig deeper than this single pipeline struggle to attack the roots of what is ruining our world, confronting internal as well as external patterns and assumptions, facing the violent histories that still find their home in the present.

This land was already stolen, and private property shouldn't exist any more than this pipeline should. This fight didn't begin with this pipeline and it won't end until the destruction of colonialism, white supremacy, capitalism, patriarchy, governance, everything wreaking destruction on the earth and waging constant war on certain human beings to create empty structures of wealth and power.

Let's let what we learn in this struggle reach into every corner of our lives, even as our lives and relationships meld inextricably with our actions. Let's build friendships and commitments strong enough to withstand the long fight ahead. It's going to be very, very hard. I think we've only gotten glimpses of what we'd need to achieve to stop this pipeline. Yet if those glimpses are any indication, the coming months, and the coming years and lifetimes fighting the many facets of the world we're trying to destroy, will contain not only grueling effort and frequent moments of doubt but also unexpected joy, laughter, and triumph.

So keep on fighting, and growing communities that have no room for pipelines or their world.

I hope to see you on the mountains, in the streets, by the rivers and in the fields and wetlands and forests.

— Nutty

Donate: bit.ly/supportmvpresistance

#noMVP #nopipelines #belikenutty #belikefern #belikedeckard #standwithred
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Ramps Campaign shared Appalachians Against Pipelines's photo.
Ramps Campaign

Let’s stay as safe as we can so we be dangerous together!Hey y’all, Nutty here again.

It is, remarkably, day 56 of this blockade, but today that’s not what I am trying to write about.

Throughout my time up here I’ve been hoping that this action sparks further action, and trying to use the voice I have as a tool for mobilization and incitement.

For me this means inviting people into a struggle within which I have found meaning, friendship, and reasons to live, but something I need to remember is that this also means calling on people to take risks.

The long history of state repression against pipeline struggles, land defense movements and rebels of all sorts points to the necessity of making and putting into practice commitments to protect ourselves and each other. Even if the more frightening aspects of surveillance and repression may sometimes seem like a distant possibility, the risks we take deserve to be taken seriously individually and collectively.

I asked friends to come up with links to resources on security culture and practicing self defense against the legal system, which are posted below. If you know of other good resources please share in comments!

Whether we are first learning these practices or recalling them for the hundredth time, I think we can all use a reminder of how high the stakes are when our struggles are all, ultimately, against the state and legal system attempting to dictate our lives.

Remember that attacks, incarceration and assassination of dissidents and rebels is not a phenomenon confined to distant lands — our government both exports violence and has practiced it against those it calls “citizens” (Fred Hampton, Leonard Peltier).

Remember the Green Scare (if you don’t, do some research). Remember that repression at Standing Rock involved brutal maimings, grand juries and FBI frame-ups and that some are still incarcerated or facing jail time (Free RedFawn!). Nearby anti-pipeline resistance in so-called Pennsylvania drew intense surveillance by private security, fake news attacks and attempted doxing on social media, as well as attempts at infiltration. Here in this region friends have faced doxing, threats and assaults by alt-right nazi trolls after standing up to white supremacists and fascists.

This is not an attempt to scare people off; simply a reminder of the context we are operating within.

I think it’s especially important to remember that even if you yourself intend to maintain certain limits around the risks you expose yourself to, by engaging with this struggle you’ll likely be working with folx choosing to take greater risks (perhaps unbeknownst to you) and with people whose identities make them more targeted by repression.

What we do can impact our friends and entire groups.

So (among many other practices) don’t talk to cops! Let’s stay as safe as we can so we be dangerous together ...

-Nutty

Resources!

ccrjustice.org/if-agent-knocks-booklet (the image pasted with this post is from this zine!)

www.sproutdistro.com/2017/01/31/new-zine-whatever-dont-talk-police/

www.sproutdistro.com/catalog/zines/legal/know-rights-need-know/
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