Communique from Tramp 3/11/13
Dear Comrades, and whoever is left…
Once again the Hotmess/RCA compound is expecting a judgment sometime this week that we expect will put us back on the Alameda Sheriffs eviction list. We have every reason to believe that the Police are hungry to put an end to our autonomous space, and we may be finally reaching the end of our ability to litigate our way into a longer occupancy by legal means.
These are dangerous times for us. Collaboration between squats is evaporating. We have lost a dozen collective members since the New Year and we feel too that our support outside of the compound is waning.
Believe me, if we could give you a fixed time and date to organize a defense for this space around, we would. It’s in the interest of the State to organize it’s eviction as an ambush and catch us off guard at some absurd hour.
Forgive us if it feels like we “cry Wolf” every few weeks. Our eviction has legitimately been pursued by the Sheriffs numerous times since Judge Victoria Kolakowski ruled against us in October. It is only through our collective perseverance and your much appreciated communal support that we have kept this space.
Forgive us also for being so dominated by this protracted legal battle; it has jeopardized our ability to come out and support you and your projects. This is also a strategy of the State and Capital: to wear us down, to alienate us from our community, to deny us resources, and ultimately make us a ghetto within a ghetto.
Friends we are more than a squat, more than a land-project, more than the mythological autonomous zone alluded to in so many zines and idealistic visions. We are a home, a radical family, a vacuum in capitalist time and space. We are the best kind of spectacle, and thankfully (and in some ways regrettably)…not yet Hellarity.
We call on you now in preparation for the end, and the possibility of new beginnings. We are holding space for radicalized People of Color, Womyn, and Transgendered/Queer persons who would like to become collective house-members. As always (and I quote): support means painting murals, raucous events, community
meetings and educational workshops, gardening, and breaking all the barriers that pose us as “others” against each other.
There may not be another space like this, given the absurd investment we are seeing in the re-development of west Oakland. For now the corner of west Macarthur and MLK is out of the hands of private capital, city tax, and the prison-industrial-gentrification-complex. It’s imperative that we fight for this space, and continue to threaten the mores of private property. This, we cannot do without each other.
“The squatters defied simple classification: from rockers with working class roots to feminists, …immigrants…to the elderly, students to single mothers, and born-again Christians to ideological anarchists, they were more a motley collection than a self-defined collectivity of mainly students like the New Left…As living behind barricades became a way of life for many squatters, the illegality of their everyday lives radicalized their attitude toward the state and hardened their own feeling of self-importance.”
This excerpt, from The Subversion of Politics, describing the squatters of 1980’s Berlin, describes accurately our condition today. There is still time go deeper in our confrontation with Capitalism and Empire, to decolonize everyday life and find each other in this space where we can choose our own destiny. Where no one is turned away for lack of funds.
Mad Love and Solidarity