East Flatbush Rebellion, Not “Outside Agitators”

by Will, (Fire Next Time) on March 14, 2013

Originally posted at Fire Next Time — The following is a brief reportback from Will, a member of Fire Next Time who witnessed two of the last three nights of protests in East Flatbush following the police killing of 16-year old Kimani “Kiki” Gray.

The “outside agitators” are back!

The legend of the outside agitator has returned. Clowns like city councilman Jumanee Williams and the leadership of Occupy the Hood are fueling the myth that last night’s rebellions was led / caused by white people or outside agitators.  I was there at last night’s rebellion, and let me tell you: there were fewer then 10 white people involved in a rebellion of hundreds of young Black militants.  Last night was led by young Black militants. Period.

For hours, Black politicians and activists — many of them veterans of, or influenced by, the 1968 generation — yelled and berated the young people to keep the “peace” and “respect.” The NYC Black establishment brought its best efforts to bear in hopes of keeping the affair civil.  Crowds of Black men and women listened for almost two hours.  They were told that the keepers of the peace felt their pain, that they understood. There was silence from the crowd of angry faces.  The tension could be felt. The crowd had selected no spokesperson to respond, and none emerged organically in the moment. Will one emerge tonight?

At some point at night, the Black militants decided to march. No white people told them to march. As the march moved through the streets of Flatbush, it was Black militants who picked up bricks, cinder blocks, and beer bottles and threw them at the police.  There were almost no white and Latino or African American faces involved in this.  It was largely a Jamaican and Afro-Caribbean rebellion.

Outside agitators?

And perhaps that is the problem.  We need to flip the script of the outside agitator.   Are brothers and sisters from the Bronx outside agitators? The same people who are stopped and frisked in the Bronx become outside agitators to Jumanee Williams and his friends.   It is time for the rest of the NYC working class to jump in and get involved.  If the divisions of racialization are going to be broken down, white, Brown, and Black working class people must face the cops and go to jail together.  New solidarities must be built.  Now is the time for everyone who has felt the pain of the police to converge in Flatbush. Bring presents, bring your anger, and bring your running shoes.

The target has been the 67th Precinct all week, but we have not had enough forces to take it on.  All the crews across New York should converge in Flatbush and then march towards the 67th precinct.

Outside agitators?

Clowns like Jumanee Williams and Charles Barron are part of the system.  They are spreading lies about who led the rebellion. Soon Williams and Barron will say the Haitian Revolution was caused by outside agitators, that Watts in 1965 was cuz of outside agitators, and the Montgommery Bus Boycott was orchestrated by white outside agitators. These clowns are in the way of revolution.

During Occupy, hundreds of people joined up with Occupy the Hood in hopes of building movement in working class black and brown neighborhoods. Now the opportunity is here. Will those who identify with these goals come down on the side of the people in the streets, or toe the line of the politicians? Only they can decide.

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Aaron Aarons March 15, 2013 at 7:25 pm

Seems to me that the best thing for people in the New York City metro area outside of the present area of confrontation to do would be to act against police targets (and other ruling-class targets) in other parts of NYC. Those actions could be either public demonstrations or guerrilla-style actions by individuals and small groups.

But the thing for all of us everywhere to do is to (politically and otherwise) defend those who fight the police, the capitalist state, and the capitalist class by any means that don’t irresponsibly endanger genuinely innocent people.


Pham Binh March 15, 2013 at 9:40 pm

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