Self protection when organizing in violent times, a thread.

Got a call today from a comrade that an organizer I know was asking for help because they're surrounded at their home by white supremacists. 1/x
I put out word to other organizers, but everyone was at a recurring protest and had their phones off, so I put on my body armor and got in the car. I drove by and didn't see anyone or anything weird. I pulled into a side street and texted them. 2/x
They said "oh we worked everything out." I said, call me now and talk or I can't go home. It's too weird to put out a call for help then say everything is ok. They called & confirmed it was all well & there were no white supremacists. I asked if I could come by & got the ok. 3/x
Turns out they were having a mental break & had called a bunch of local BLM organizers & since I'm a rapid responder for other stuff I got the call. Ive done mental health checks for people through volunteer work in the past so I knew what to do but thats not the problem. 4/x
When people told me before "FBI are tracking me!" it posed no danger it was clearly psychosis. When they say its nzis in an area with nzis, I thought I was going into immediate danger. Several times I HAVE been put in immediate danger through others' negligence in organizing. 5/x
Several organizing groups in the LA area have had to remove sex pests. I've been in marches that have been coopted by people who want to get protestors hurt for "the message." Fash clearly try to infiltrate protests around the country. How can you organize safely? 6/x
The answer is, you cant. You have to use discretion. You can't be forgiving and loving and trusting at all times. You have to stay frosty: not actively distrustful and aggressive, but always keeping it in your mind that someone who seems nice, fun, dedicated may be trouble. 7/x
You have to take precautions. For some that means secrecy: don't use your real number on signal - use a google voice number, use a burner email, use a different name in even peaceful orgs, keep your picture off the internet, etc. 8/x
For others that means constant situational awareness. I have my picture up here and I've invited organizers to my real house. I also keep a gun in a biometric safe by the bed and I think through consequences and risk mitigation in "harmless" circumstances. I trust but verify. 9/x
Whatever strategy or mix of strategies you choose for keeping yourself safe, you must think about it and implement it in your life. Don't just show up and trust people to take care of your safety. Assume the movement as a whole is good but any individual may be bad. 10/x
Don't allow the infiltrators and bad actors to make you paranoid or stop working. We must accept risk to be leftists. COINTELPRO's highest goal is to keep us afraid. We are, in the end, doomed. But through risk mitigation we can stay alive long enough to do something meaningful.
PS A couple of you sweetly reached out. At the end of the day, Im fine. Wellness checks aren't scary, & it's not the organizers fault they were having a mental break. I just want people to know sometimes those you organize with can have issues, some are their fault & some aren't.

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More from @FullCommie

22 Oct
Lessons I've learned about vetting strategies for new leftist groups, a thread.

Vetting is often suggested on leftist twitter, but it can mean very different things to different people both in how it's done and how it's useful. Here are some tips, limitations, and pitfalls.
1/20
Leftist groups, especially ones focused on defense/guns, often try to make sure new members fit with the group and are safe enough to allow in. Often the vetting process means interviews, questionnaires, a look at social media, a probationary period, and some initial tasks.
2/20
The first thing to figure out is, what is important to the group? Some possibilities:
1) political cohesiveness with the group
2) political development
3) intersectional awareness
4) willingness to work and type of work they like to do
5) vibe
6) background and history
3/20
Read 21 tweets
26 Sep
A thread of a few reasons wholeheartedly trusting digital security is a bad idea.
There are a number of ways cops can use your phone against you. Encryption is great, but they can bypass it illegally and use other legal but tenuous reasons to prosecute you. 1/x
Police can now use geofence warrants:
dailydot.com/debug/geofenci…

Geofence warrants mean anyone whose cell pinged a tower in an area can be arrested. Its dystopian and infringes on several rights but remember rights dont exist anyway. 2/x
Police don't need warrants to access data anyway:
npr.org/2017/02/17/515…

Police can also rip the data from your phone in minutes. This article is through a device but it’s possible to do remotely:
thenextweb.com/us/2011/04/20/…

3/x
Read 10 tweets
18 Sep
Recently in our leftist org chapter we’ve been giving statements to new members during onboarding:
1) Zero tolerance for sexual misconduct/bigotry. Anybody can be a predator especially those who dont “look like” one.
2) The club isnt FOR cis white men but they’re allowed to join.
We tell them if they ever feel like one of these points is not being met to please tell us. We’re getting a ton of positive feedback on this. Thank you, makes me feel so comfortable, etc. Its the simplest shit, but I think it may at the very least show we think about these things
Just having an unofficial policy where the cis men in a group help keep each other accountable on not taking up all the air in meetings makes a difference. I notice it so much more now in business meetings when theres a woman cut off while talking
Read 5 tweets
15 Sep
Concerned about fascists getting your info? Want security while organizing in leftist spaces?
Do these things:
Get a burner email.
Get a google voice number and use it on the Signal app.
Use a fake name.
Wear a mask.
No social media.
Just those steps cut 99% of doxxing potential
Everything besides the mask is free btw
Fucked up and used your real number? Dont fret. Follow these steps (Its a pain but it takes only like 15 min)

1) Get a friend in the groups youre in to save your google voice number.
2) Save their number to Your contacts.
Read 4 tweets
14 Sep
Some not-so-happy thoughts on community defense, a thread.

After every instance of cold blooded police brutality in the US gets publicized, there are renewed calls for community defense and Black Panther Party style patrols.
1/18
Before I start lets be clear: if youre ready to form a community defense patrol none of this should dishearten you but remind you of what the stakes are. Patrols are a calm show of force to stop police murders, not a guerilla group, but youll still go to jail for it. 2/18
The Black Panther Party is inextricable from the concept of marginalized community defense. White racist gangs may drive around open carrying rifles, but they lack all of the discipline, effectiveness, and purpose of the BPP patrols. 3/18
Read 18 tweets
11 Sep
Secession is a good option for bringing socialism to the US, a thread. 1/12
Secession is when one part of a country leaves to form its own country. This can happen peacefully or violently, and can be one sided (unilateral) where the region decides to leave without asking permission or it can be voted on as a nation. 2/12
In the US, secession is LEGAL. Texas v White determined unilateral (one sided) secession to be illegal, but this law can be changed and its not in the constitution. Secession by decision as a country is perfectly legal even now. 3/12
Read 12 tweets

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