Disruption of Kristian Williams speech in Portland

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May 12 2014 08:09
Disruption of Kristian Williams speech in Portland

There was an intervention at a conference in Portland yesterday. It doesn't quite reach the levels of the "smack a white boy" crimethinc intervention in terms of cringe-inducing inward focused leftist cultish behaviour, but it comes close.

Here's the video of the intervention:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4r7cwWegXCU#t=17

There was some kind of massive argument about a previous conference that led to Kristian Williams publishing this piece:
http://www.towardfreedom.com/29-archives/activism/3455-the-politics-of-denunciation

This annoyed lots of people who decided Kristian Williams shouldn't be allowed to speak, as by questioning other people's accounts of the fallout following a mishandled mediation process related to a sexual assault incident, he is silencing victims and via Maoist guilt by association mechanisms almost as guilty as the actual sexual assaulter.

Patriarchy and the Movement statement from 2013:
http://patriarchyandthemovement.wordpress.com/2013/03/07/statement-on-the-patriarchy-and-the-movement-event-portland-2282013/

KW statement about recent incident:
http://www.kristianwilliams.com/2014/05/11/at-law-and-disorder-may-2014/

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May 12 2014 09:25

obnoxious cultish droll trumps jazzhands.

no1
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May 12 2014 12:42

not sure about this ... I have no opinion on the Kristian Williams thing as I'm not familiar with what happened. But I think we have a far bigger problem with rapists and the rape apologists that enable them getting away with assaulting comrades, than there is with people trying to fight them.
I think it's essential that survivors can be confident of our support when they confront abusers and misogynists in our organisations. No doubt it's not intentional but I think threads like this one undermine that confidence, because the sentiments expressed here is too similar to what I read in the comments on the youtube video you link to:

Quote:
"mob rule lol"
"It just sounds like a bunch of fags and lesbians that are mad at the church. "
"Send everyone to University, they said. It will make society more educated, they said."
"3:33 Is that a man or a woman?"
"A twinkie would silence the chubby girl."
"Fat feminists ruining everything, as usual"
"They are just mad because they are all ugly as fuck"
"Oh brother look at some of those freaks. "
"These aren't anarchists, they're brainwashed feminist retards."
"hahahaha "Anarchists"are retarded faggots."
"SAFE SPACE"

As I said, I don't know about this particular situation, but in principle I support people disrupting events at which misogynists and rape apologists speak.

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May 12 2014 15:40

I was going to post this in the DIY thread, but I think instances of sexual assault and abuse show the problem of anarchism and DIY not being the same thing and in ways contradictory. To quote the Addressing Sexual Violence in the IWW article

Quote:
While many of us are rightfully suspicious of state structures, until we have the capacity to deal with all aspects of sexual assault appropriately, I believe the only responsible course of action in the case of a report of sexual assault is to encourage and help survivors to contact sexual assault support services in their area, such as helplines, hospitals, police, sexual assault centers or mental health care. We simply do not have the organizational resources or expertise at this point to assist survivors in the ways that are necessary to prevent awful outcomes, such as re-victimization, unwanted publicity, exposing them to further sexual or domestic violence from the same offender, drug and alcohol abuse, or suicide.

I think that there's an unspoken consensus on here that these subcultural "community" responses don't work, with a lot of people speaking from experience. Beyond the act of excommunication, which is a basic.

I think this stems from the ideology of DIY, that everything can and should be done by the "community" and contained within it. I don't see anything incompatible with anarchism or libertarian communism with seeking expert and outside advice or assistance. But just because we can learn some crafts and bike mechanics from a zine or skill share doesn't mean we'll be capable of dealing with the hugely complex consequences and reality of sexual assault and abuse. Thus, criticism of these processes have to start from the point that they just don't work without engendering responses like above, pace the criticisms made of the Williams piece. But responses like above are signs of an intentional community trying to protect itself in the face of criticism. I'll leave others to psychologize it.

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May 12 2014 16:23
Quote:
I don't see anything incompatible with anarchism or libertarian communism with seeking expert and outside advice or assistance.

yeah i think this kinda hits the nail on the head, if were supposed to stand up for communities and cooperation how can be working with, helping and in turn being helped by other people a 'bad thing'.
I believe, and your welcome to disagree that until we find a way to 'bring down' the state then were left with no choice but to work within it, short of living in a cave you cant do much to avoid the state and capitalism.
and in times of need then who are we question the judgement of other who've experienced acts of violence, sexual assault and abuse?

it should be their decision and if were telling them what to do, or indeed to avoid the state and only use DIY then were hypocrites.
whereas i agree we should create a world based in communities and cooperation with people and not institutions, this is the reality of the world we live in today.
which differs, of course from the one we want to make.

rant over...

wink

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May 12 2014 19:42
no1 wrote:
I don't know about this particular situation, but in principle I support people disrupting events at which misogynists and rape apologists speak.

I agree in general, although I question the usefulness of the particular tactics here at the best of times. But this is precisely not applicable in this particular situation. What they are disrupting is an event at which someone who, at worst, defended someone else who was involved in a badly handled accountability process who questioned the opinion of a survivor of sexual assault, and said there is a chance these situations could be abused. And it's not clear at all that he even did that, since there's massive disagreement about what was the right thing to do.

So this situation does not count as that at all, although far more energy is being wasted on it than is ever spent on dealing with sexual assault, because righteous denunciation is a more attractive pastime. This argument is really about rival political factions, the survivor in the situation is not involved and is just used as a pawn in the political fallout. What it is is a bunch of post-Occupy naifs doing their self-righteous leftist cult thing now their time in the limelight has faded, with a distinct chance that actions are being politically manipulated by the state, given the known high level of federal agency presence in Occupy (including two of the panel speakers previously knowing (and helping to expose) the informant Brandon Darby). The panel speakers' camp, former members of Bring the Ruckus and friends, may have mishandled an accountability process and used leninist tactics during Occupy. Also they seem like self publicists. I don't think their side is entirely flawless at all and have major political disagreements with them, but overall their behaviour still seems more reasonable.

This situation is of interest because it's a clear example of a pattern that has been observed before (in the mid 1970s on a larger scale) - degeneration of a movement into introspection, infighting, and religious/cultish behaviour after the initial period of higher energy and class struggle has faded. It's both a symptom and cause of further demoralisation and demobilisation of the left after Occupy.

no1 wrote:
not sure about this ... I have no opinion on the Kristian Williams thing as I'm not familiar with what happened. But I think we have a far bigger problem with rapists and the rape apologists that enable them getting away with assaulting comrades, than there is with people trying to fight them.
I think it's essential that survivors can be confident of our support when they confront abusers and misogynists in our organisations. No doubt it's not intentional but I think threads like this one undermine that confidence, because the sentiments expressed here is too similar to what I read in the comments on the youtube video you link to:

Sorry, how the fuck are my opinions similar to those quotes? Those quotes are from a right wing youtube channel, they have nothing at all to do with my view of the events.

Also, I didn't know the Williams article was on this site and taken down - what happened with that?

Fleur
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May 12 2014 19:35

I wasn't going to comment, fed up going over the same things, but my annoyance levels rose, so here goes.

I was going to comment on the Kristian Williams article last time it went up but it was taken down before I could, but basically -

Quote:
Under this schema, it is taken for granted that no survivor is ever also an abuser, and no abuser is the survivor of someone else's violence.

There's one from the Screamingly Obvious File. Nobody is born abusive, it's a learned and reactive behaviour, but what exactly is he proposing that we do about it?
Oh, this-

Quote:
It will require us, therefore, to address sexual assault and other abuse by actually engaging with the people who do such things. We have to struggle with them as much as we struggle against oppression.

In what way would any group have the resources, experience, knowledge or any bloody thing to be able to rehabilitate a rapist? And what's happening to the survivor when this miraculous act of rehabilitation is going on while struggling with the abuser? My bet's on them being out of there.

I don't know what happened in Portland but I'm in agreement with the other posters that some things can not be dealt with on a DIY basis. I can do a bit of first aid and can deal with cuts and bruises but I can't set a broken leg or deal with appendicitis and I would expect others to intervene if I tried. There's nothing wrong with seeking out and accepting outside help and there's something a little weird and cultish to suggest we don't. There's also something a little arrogant about The Movement if it doesn't accept that it's part of a wider community.
There is something which isn't incompatible with a DIY ethos, whether as part of a group or as an individual, that's having a little bit of sensitivity towards survivors, educating yourself around issues and being able to locate and access relevant resources, as and when they're needed.
I doubt if any group has the resources to provide a survivor with all the social, medical, psychological etc help they might need but I'm pretty damned sure they don't the means to "heal" the abuser.

btw, Hi Josh! Good to have you here smile

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May 12 2014 19:48
Shorty wrote:
I don't see anything incompatible with anarchism or libertarian communism with seeking expert and outside advice or assistance. But just because we can learn some crafts and bike mechanics from a zine or skill share doesn't mean we'll be capable of dealing with the hugely complex consequences and reality of sexual assault and abuse.

The problem with this is, from my limited understanding, that the mainstream doesn't deal with it well enough. So that handing it over to the experts is often an unacceptable solution. Obviously all depending om place, contacts, personality etc.

Much of your point still stands but when society is crap at dealing with the issue what do you do?

[edit: just to say the two posts above appeared while i was writing and that I agree that trying to deal with issues you can't handle is a tragic mistake with issues this serious.]

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May 12 2014 20:51

I've tried to be supportive of one of my siblings, who's been a victim of sexual abuse, long periods of self-medication to deal with many traumas in her life, which in turn has caused her to spend considerable time (from months to one sentence of a year) in psych wards, county jails and rehab clinics. As much as I hate to admit this, it's been mental health professionals and psych meds that have kept her suicidal impulses and self-destruction at bay. If she didn't get SSI, public health treatments, and prescriptions funded by the state, she'd have been homeless long ago, and probably wouldn't be alive today.

The last thing in the world she needs is anyone fighting on behalf of her victimhood. What's helped her lately is the unconditional love she gets from her various peer-based support groups. Nearly everyone in her groups were not only victims of sexual, physical and emotion abuse, but if they hadn't stopped their self-destructive patterns they could have reproduced the kind of abuse that they had experienced towards others. My sister's jail sentences only made these tendencies worse. From what I've seen, her best counselors are the ones who've survived and recovered from the same abuses she's experienced. They have seen the healing process as insiders.

This topic requires more gravity than simple tit-for-tat point scoring among rival activist groups. People's lives hang in the balance, which requires a commitment to see the survivor through the process of healing. In my own family, the wounds run deep and the process takes a lifetime.

iexist
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May 13 2014 14:30
Hieronymous wrote:
I've tried to be supportive of one of my siblings, who's been a victim of sexual abuse, long periods of self-medication to deal with many traumas in her life, which in turn has caused her to spend considerable time (from months to one sentence of a year) in psych wards, county jails and rehab clinics. As much as I hate to admit this, it's been mental health professionals and psych meds that have kept her suicidal impulses and self-destruction at bay. If she didn't get SSI, public health treatments, and prescriptions funded by the state, she'd have been homeless long ago, and probably wouldn't be alive today.

The last thing in the world she needs is anyone fighting on behalf of her victimhood. What's helped her lately is the unconditional love she gets from her various peer-based support groups. Nearly everyone in her groups were not only victims of sexual, physical and emotion abuse, but if they hadn't stopped their self-destructive patterns they could have reproduced the kind of abuse that they had experienced towards others. My sister's jail sentences only made these tendencies worse. From what I've seen, her best counselors are the ones who've survived and recovered from the same abuses she's experienced. They have seen the healing process as insiders.

This topic requires more gravity than simple tit-for-tat point scoring among rival activist groups. People's lives hang in the balance, which requires a commitment to see the survivor through the process of healing. In my own family, the wounds run deep and the process takes a lifetime.

Fucking yes

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May 13 2014 15:31
Quote:
btw, Hi Josh! Good to have you here

cheers comrade!
i think i like it round these parts! smile

Quote:
Hieronymous wrote:
I've tried to be supportive of one of my siblings, who's been a victim of sexual abuse, long periods of self-medication to deal with many traumas in her life, which in turn has caused her to spend considerable time (from months to one sentence of a year) in psych wards, county jails and rehab clinics. As much as I hate to admit this, it's been mental health professionals and psych meds that have kept her suicidal impulses and self-destruction at bay. If she didn't get SSI, public health treatments, and prescriptions funded by the state, she'd have been homeless long ago, and probably wouldn't be alive today.
The last thing in the world she needs is anyone fighting on behalf of her victimhood. What's helped her lately is the unconditional love she gets from her various peer-based support groups. Nearly everyone in her groups were not only victims of sexual, physical and emotion abuse, but if they hadn't stopped their self-destructive patterns they could have reproduced the kind of abuse that they had experienced towards others. My sister's jail sentences only made these tendencies worse. From what I've seen, her best counselors are the ones who've survived and recovered from the same abuses she's experienced. They have seen the healing process as insiders.

This topic requires more gravity than simple tit-for-tat point scoring among rival activist groups. People's lives hang in the balance, which requires a commitment to see the survivor through the process of healing. In my own family, the wounds run deep and the process takes a lifetime.

fucking yes is seconded as a decent response.

good for you mate, best of luck to your sister and family.
your last comment about points scoring is very important, sometimes
we forget that its people were trying to fight for not just ideas.

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May 13 2014 17:39

Thank all of you for your supportive comments.

My sister's drug addiction was integral to her trying to find an escape from the trauma of her abuse and it really threw her into a negative spiral as she did whatever she could to feed her habit. This was 13 years ago. Her self-destruction also led to serious delusions, where her self-pity led to revenge fantasies that in turn led to her to harass and abuse anyone she perceived had slighted her (maybe this is a typical psychological dysfunction, but during this period she always defended the ex-partner who abused her). Which led to restraining orders and was the main cause of her being locked up, in both psych wards and jail. Without a process of healing, she was merely reproducing the cycle of abusive behavior, by treating others the way she had been treated. My family stuck with her, with all the ups and downs, including bouts of living on the street. But it took its toll and my mom, who'd been healthy all her life, got really sick around the time my sister did her year-long jail sentence. Our mom passed away 13 years ago, and this sent my sister to her "bottom," that in turn woke her up. It took 10 years, but with NA, AA, survivors groups, counseling from other survivors, therapy, and psych meds, she broke the chains of addiction and has been clean for 3 years. And with all the suffering she's been through, healing and recovery will be a continuous process for the rest of her life. But it will be a part of my -- and my family's -- life too, and that's what I think gets lost when people run around with all these ideological denunciations that have nothing to do with the actual needs of the survivors and all the others affected.

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May 15 2014 09:38

Sobering input, Hieronymous. It's remarkable how far away the antics in the OP video are from doing anything at all to address these real issues.

EmC
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May 16 2014 15:12

Nice speaking or your sister and her supposedly self destructive habits. Personally I'm a rape survivor. I find this thread grotesque. I found the article by Kristian Williams hideous... Basically arguing that we need to make more space in the movement for people who abuse women.

What I've observed is one of the No 1 worst problems rape survivors have is that they are encouraged to direct their anger inwards rather than at the people and system who victimised them. Nobody thinks twice about being angry at a capitalist that stole their wages. But someone who held you down and fucked you up the arse... well you gotta see them as human and stop feeling sorry for yourself Girl.

Honestly I found this video empowering. People like Kristian Williams shouldn't be welcome in the movement.

Also, the IWW article was a joke. Having been through their idiotic process I can say the person who wrote it may be a survivor, but she's got no fucking clue what it's like dealing with that bureaucracy when it's decided you're a problem that needs to be got rid of.

Oh yeah... And waiting for the cowardly anonymous votes... Always love that about Libcom.

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May 16 2014 19:10
EmC wrote:
Oh yeah... And waiting for the cowardly anonymous votes... Always love that about Libcom.

I agree that the Facebook-inspired voting system is cowardly, but we all live in a technology-mediated world that encourages shallowness. Which means we should be more nuanced and human than a jumble of characters and numbers on a screen.

But when you allege that someone "supposedly" suffered, aren't you falling into the same shallowness trap and attempting to censure and erase the painful experience of others? Which is exactly what you're accusing others of doing. And the discussion needs to go beyond gender binaries and draw in victims of all kinds of sexual violence; where I live, it could just as easily be man-on-man or assaults against transgendered people. It's a more global problem than what happens in microscopically small activist circles.

And when you're going to uninvite anyone from "the movement," please explain which movement you're taking about. If it's a movement of survivors I'd much rather hear about how we, as friends and family of survivors, can show our support and solidarity. This has nothing to do with attacking people at a conference at a university.

EDIT

A proposal: how about a moratorium on voting either up or down on libcom? Instead, please pull yourself out of the shallows and make a comment of substance. This Facebook feature is fucking moronic; there is absolutely no context to these anonymous votes, nothing more than the cognitive depth required to choose between Coke and Pepsi.

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May 16 2014 17:09

Okay, so the IWW Australia process doesn't work nor does the "community" process. If we take that as our starting point, where to now?

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May 16 2014 17:23
Shorty wrote:
Okay, so the IWW Australia process doesn't work nor does the "community" process. If we take that as our starting point, where to now?

It would be much healthier to hear concrete proposals for a survivor-centered process developed by those affected.

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May 16 2014 19:04

your reply was interesting, and i think it raised some good points
but what exactly does "I find this thread grotesque." mean?
i don't think anyone here has posted anything 'wrong' or unpleasant...

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May 17 2014 09:57

Mr Jolly, your last comment has been unpublished. Insults, particularly one-line insults, are not allowed according to our forum guidelines.

Any more will result in a temporary ban.

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May 17 2014 10:22

Very rarely do my hackles rise, but I found the post incredibly insulting to a previous poster and his sister. Fair enough unpublish, but surely a warning should cut both ways.

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May 17 2014 10:44
Mr. Jolly wrote:
Very rarely do my hackles rise, but I found the post incredibly insulting to a previous poster and his sister. Fair enough unpublish, but surely a warning should cut both ways.

you may not agree with EmC's post, but you cannot say it is just flaming.

As we've said before, the down votes are not just to use if you disagree with something, but to illustrate disagreement with aggressive or bullying behaviour. If you have a particular disagreement with somebody's post, people should post a comment to say what it is. (admin note: no further discussion on the moderation decision or the up/down voting is permitted on this thread. Contribute to an existing or start a new thread if you want to discuss those)

Also, just to flag up that a statement from those who disrupted Williams' speech has been posted here:
http://libcom.org/forums/general/feminist-opposition-kristian-williams-shut-down-law-disorder-2014-17052014

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May 17 2014 11:28

Emc, dropping one-liner exclamations without accompanying substantiation doesn't do much good for anyone.

"I find this thread grotesque". Why

"I found the article by Kristian Williams hideous... Basically arguing that we need to make more space in the movement for people who abuse women." Could you expand on that

"But someone who held you down and fucked you up the arse... well you gotta see them as human and stop feeling sorry for yourself Girl." I didn't read anything like that, or even approximately suggesting that. Maybe you could say what it is that sounded like that

edit: FWIW I haven't touched the voting system

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May 17 2014 11:49
Kureigo-San wrote:
"I find this thread grotesque". Why

I don't want to speak for EmC, but I think the title of the thread and the introductory post were inappropriate, although TBH I hadn't got round to giving my views or changing the thread title.

Is even if you disagree with the actions of the individuals, this is nothing about cultism, this is people trying to address a serious problem which is the lack of support for survivors of sexual violence within the movement.

Quote:
"I found the article by Kristian Williams hideous... Basically arguing that we need to make more space in the movement for people who abuse women." Could you expand on that

TBH I haven't had time to look into this in detail, but when I read his article (admittedly quickly) he does seem to talk more about the anarchist movement trying to rehabilitate abusers, rather than support the abused.

Quote:
"But someone who held you down and fucked you up the arse... well you gotta see them as human and stop feeling sorry for yourself Girl." I didn't read anything like that, or even approximately suggesting that. Maybe you could say what it is that sounded like that

again, see the previous point

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May 17 2014 12:18
Steven wrote:
TBH I haven't had time to look into this in detail, but when I read his article (admittedly quickly) he does seem to talk more about the anarchist movement trying to rehabilitate abusers, rather than support the abused.

Yeah, that's how I read it and I think he's talking shit but I also kind of agree with 888 that this isn't even about excluding rapists from political events/radical groups, it's about excluding people who hold shit views on how others have dealt with rapists within radical groups. I personally don't think that's a good strategy for changing how we deal with rape/sexual assault as a movement as it would basically mean trying to exclude most people and disrupt almost every meeting in the far-left! Rape culture is still so pervasive in the left that I think we're still at the point where we've barely/not even won these arguments and implemented them within the groups we're involved in. I mean, even in your union branch (as in many union branches around the UK), I bet there are still currently active SWP members, who in my opinion are far worse than this Williams guy.. the tactic can't be to 'no platform' them in union meetings as it would just be unworkable. It would be completely different if it was Martin Smith or Steve Hedley or whatever but (unless I'm missing something) some guy who holds shitty opinions on how deal with rapists could be basically the majority of the movement..

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May 17 2014 12:26
Ed wrote:
I mean, even in your union branch (as in many union branches around the UK), I bet there are still currently active SWP members, who in my opinion are far worse than this Williams guy.. the tactic can't be to 'no platform' them in union meetings as it would just be unworkable. It would be completely different if it was Martin Smith or Steve Hedley or whatever but (unless I'm missing something) some guy who holds shitty opinions on how deal with rapists could be basically the majority of the movement..

yeah, there are at least a couple of people at my work (mostly women) who signed the statement in support of Smith, which I find abhorrent. However as you say we still work together and have a common interest in opposing our bosses, so we have to have a way of working together.

That said, for much of the anarchist movement there is not that sort of practical purpose, so there is not that much incentive not to "no platform" people. So I can't really bring myself to be that fussed about this action one way or another, as it's not really relevant outside of a "scene" I'm not really part of.

EmC
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May 17 2014 16:35

I don't care if the person found it insulting. The reason is this... They aren't the first person who's found it frustrating that their family members haven't recovered as they'd like from mental health problems or from trauma. Plenty of us have been subjected to the "why don't you just get over it" bs. If someone came and broke my leg nobody would be like "but why don't you just get better, you must have a victim complex". It is pretty much scientific consensus now that trauma is physical damage to the brain. Someone can't just get over it by feeling less like a victim.

That aside, maybe, just maybe, people act like victims because they have been victimised?

Also I find it fucking disgusting that you, mostly males, sit here liking those comment's but you don't give a fuck about what actual survivors say about OURSELVES.

The other thing... I know people who are close to me have found my illness difficult to deal with. I get that. I get if they can't handle and have to leave my life (I've been blessed that none have), but what I would NEVER forgive them for is going on a fucking site like this and using my trauma to support some fucking rape apologist scum like Kristian Williams, or to make my reaction the problem rather than what happened to me. That would be a fucking huge betrayal.

As for KW... Maybe you *guys* should remember all this was over a real person. A real woman who was raped, who was victimised over and over again by KW and his friends.

Anyway here's the article I tried to post on a separate thread cause I didn't want to have to read this shit again. But the person who posted KWs shit in the first place deleted it so here it is at the bottom of this pile of misogynist trolling shit instead.

.......................

Feminist Opposition: Kristian Williams Shut Down at Law & Disorder 2014

On May 10, over a dozen feminists protested Kristian Williams’ appearance at the Law & Disorder Conference (L&D) in Portland, Oregon. We challenged Williams’ continued harassment of a local abuse survivor, her supporters, and other political organizers. We did so because this harassment is not isolated; intimate violence and patriarchal power relations are pervasive in radical communities. We shut down Williams’ speech. Subsequently, video footage of the protest has circulated widely, but the political reasons for our disruption have traveled less far.

Williams’ supporters claim that he was protested “not for something he did, but [...] for his perspective” — in other words, because of Williams’ article “The Politics of Denunciation.” This is only partially correct. We protested because it was vital to challenge Williams and his cadre’s anti-feminist behavior and politic. The article was produced to shield Williams’ close political associates from criticism, and to justify Williams’ prior work against survivors and feminist political organizers. Even without detailed knowledge of Portland happenings, many readers recognized “The Politics of Denunciation” as aiming to shut survivors out of the radical community. Providing some background to the article is necessary.

In early 2013, feminist organizers from radical communities up and down the West Coast hosted a panel in Portland, Patriarchy and the Movement. During the discussion session, a survivor and long-time organizer, and her support team, brought up the behavior of a well-regarded male organizer, Peter Little. Little had joined her abuser’s accountability process and used it to undermine and spread misogynistic lies about the survivor (see: Survivor Support Team Statement ). For over a year prior to PatM, the survivor and her team attempted to handle this matter discreetly by approaching Little’s political associates. At the event, as a member of the survivor support team concluded her remarks, one of Little’s comrades read a prepared statement (edited by Williams) that, while ostensibly of a broad political nature, reframed the survivor’s criticism as “personal attacks” unworthy of discussion. Neither Williams’ nor his political circles stopped there, but after the event continued to harass the survivor and other women organizers, including PatM event organizers.

In this context, Williams’ article mischaracterizes and marginalizes opponents rather than fostering discussion. Williams has never been interested in dialogue; he undertook hostile efforts against the survivor without attempting to hear anything from her perspective. Following the PatM event, Williams still wouldn’t hear her perspective or answer to any critics, exclaiming “Can we not talk about this?” when the issue came up. “The Politics of Denunciation” was just another escalation, with Williams trying to legitimize the anti-survivor tactics used in Portland and provide rhetorical cover for treating survivors like enemies.

We believe:

(1) It is never appropriate to use situations of abuse instrumentally, as a weapon against political opponents;

(2) Survivors feeling failed by a leftist “accountability” process is not grounds for ostracizing and punishing them;

(3) Survivors’ decisions to speak out about the mistreatment they receive after being failed by such processes should likewise not be punished; and

(4) Women and survivors who call attention to patriarchy in our movement should be listened to, believed and respected, not scrutinized and vilified. Characterizing women and survivors as political liabilities does not represent any sort of feminist politics.

These beliefs put us in clear conflict with sectors of the radical community. The rupture in our community began with Peter Little’s hijacking of an “accountability” process to harm a survivor, but Williams widened this breach.Williams’ role in editing the anti-survivor statement read aloud at PatM (a fact which he concealed in “Denunciation”) and subsequent characterization of those critical of Peter Little as “authoritarian” and “totalitarian” creates a hostile climate for the identified survivor as well as other survivors. Williams, Little and company have expended incredible energy not only discrediting a single abuse survivor, but offering resources to discredit other survivors who come forward in the future.

We realize that confronting Williams silenced his voice. Alright. Such confrontation is resistance. Williams has used his resources and prestige to endanger survivors and women. Williams’ attendance at L&D was a slap in the face to those who have, since PatM, been lied about and harassed by Williams and his closest associates. We protested Williams because, despite his anti-police work, he engages in political repression against those who speak uncomfortable truths about his associates. It is reprehensible to vilify a survivor, and even more so to use one’s power as a movement author to lie about that vilification and one’s part in it. It is unprincipled to claim that these differences are about minor political disagreements, rather than about preconditions for collective work or even co-existence within a community. In asserting our place, loudly and confrontationally if needed, we carve out space to exist and to struggle.

-Patriarchy Haters

More information available at:
http://patriarchyhaters.wordpress.com/2014/05/15/feminist-opposition-kristian-williams-shut-down-at-law-disorder-2014/

Originally posted: https://www.anarchistnews.org/comment/44107

EmC
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May 17 2014 16:44

Also, rape culture is pervasive in the left. But when you decide you aren't going to exclude rapists and their supporters, you're deciding you are going to exclude rape survivors. You have to make a choice.

EmC
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May 17 2014 16:54
Quote:
But when you allege that someone "supposedly" suffered, aren't you falling into the same shallowness trap and attempting to censure and erase the painful experience of others?

Um, no. I'm not really sure how you could possibly conclude that anonymously down-voting someone is the same as talking about being raped. Unless as I said, you think being held down and fucked up the arse is like someone pressing their mouse.

Quote:
And when you're going to uninvite anyone from "the movement," please explain which movement you're taking about. If it's a movement of survivors I'd much rather hear about how we, as friends and family of survivors, can show our support and solidarity. This has nothing to do with attacking people at a conference at a university.

Not tolerating rape apologism is a huge part of showing solidarity.

EmC
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May 17 2014 16:56

Oh again with the pathetic down votes. You're gutless scum. But the thing is I need to keep reminding myself I'm not here to convince you. I know I can't convince you because you have no empathy. I'm still here arguing because every time I tell a manarchist to go fuck himself I get a little piece of my soul back.

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Steven.
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May 17 2014 17:15
EmC wrote:
I don't care if the person found it insulting. The reason is this... They aren't the first person who's found it frustrating that their family members haven't recovered as they'd like from mental health problems or from trauma. Plenty of us have been subjected to the "why don't you just get over it" bs. If someone came and broke my leg nobody would be like "but why don't you just get better, you must have a victim complex". It is pretty much scientific consensus now that trauma is physical damage to the brain. Someone can't just get over it by feeling less like a victim.

Er I really don't think that is what Hieronymous was saying, at all. What it looked like he was saying to me was that this is a serious issue, literally with people's lives at stake, so the light-hearted tone of the OP and some post above was inappropriate.

Or have I got the wrong end of the stick? Hieronymous, perhaps you can clarify?

Quote:
The other thing... I know people who are close to me have found my illness difficult to deal with. I get that. I get if they can't handle and have to leave my life (I've been blessed that none have), but what I would NEVER forgive them for is going on a fucking site like this and using my trauma to support some fucking rape apologist scum like Kristian Williams, or to make my reaction the problem rather than what happened to me. That would be a fucking huge betrayal.

again, I don't think that's what he was doing. I didn't even think he supported Williams. Although again I'm not sure, maybe he can clarify. Either way I don't see how he was doing anything like saying that the reaction was the problem.

Quote:

Anyway here's the article I tried to post on a separate thread cause I didn't want to have to read this shit again. But the person who posted KWs shit in the first place deleted it so here it is at the bottom of this pile of misogynist trolling shit instead.

On this bit, your post wasn't deleted, it is still there and indeed I linked users to it in post 22 on this thread. Our posting guidelines state that we should only have one thread per topic, so that person was just sticking by the posting guidelines.

(Actually, the posting guidelines also forbid big cut and pastes, saying that instead users should post a link. You have now posted that text twice, however I won't go and edit it out, as I don't want you to feel that you are being censored, however I would ask you to go back and edit it out, instead leaving a link to the other thread or its original source, just to help to keep this discussion readable)

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Supply Chain Re...
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May 17 2014 17:19

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