The most emotionally devastating and artistically gifted scene in Above All Else, John Fiege’s new climate change documentary, comes late in the film. Deep in the night, East Texas landowner David Daniel hikes through the darkness to an environmental activist encampment where he has to deliver bad news. The scene is lit only by the head lamps that Daniel and the others wear, highlighting or obscuring their grief-stricken faces. Around them is the hush and murmur of the forest. It’s a scene that may have occurred millions of times through history — a half dozen humans, alone among untouched wildness, sharing their pain.
|By: Kit OConnell Friday March 7, 2014 5:00 pm|
|By: Kit OConnell Friday March 7, 2014 9:15 am|
John Jack Anderson has decades of experience as a photojournalist. As part of the Austin Chronicle team, he conducted a long study of Occupy Austin from its first beginnings till the point when it’s activity waned two years later. He continues to be a fixture at local protests, and during the height of Occupy was our embedded reporter — someone activists trusted enough to tip off about direct actions and civil disobedience before they happened, even in those paranoid days of police infiltration and provocation.
|By: Kit OConnell Tuesday February 25, 2014 12:15 pm|
One important tool which defines modern activism is the use of social media for organizing and building solidarity. While social media does little unless paired with “meatspace” direct action, it can be a powerful tool for motivating people, reporting on live events, and building intersectionality. When arrests first occurred at Occupy Austin, we heard from activists in Egypt who had staged an impromptu protest at the US Embassy.
|By: Kit OConnell Sunday February 16, 2014 9:21 am|
One reason I wanted to chat with Scott Crow was his experience with Common Ground Collective in New Orleans. In recent years, we’ve seen similar collectives spring out of the activist networks formed by Occupy Wall Street — projects like Occupy Sandy. Late last year, alongside key Common Ground Collective organizer Lisa Fithian and many others, I organized Austin Common Ground Relief to respond to a record-breaking flood on Halloween. As the group’s dispatcher, I relied on the networks and skills formed during Occupy Austin.
|By: Kit OConnell Thursday February 13, 2014 6:59 pm|
Scott Crow is a co-founder of the Common Ground Collective which provided grassroots solidarity and mutual aid after Hurricane Katrina. An anarchist activist, author and public speaker, he travels regularly to share his views. The second edition of his book about Common Ground, Black Flags and Windmills is due out soon. It’s one of multiple book-length projects in the works.
Both Scott & I call Austin home, so I invited him out for coffee and conversation on a recent break from an unusually chilly Central Texas winter.
|By: Kit OConnell Friday February 7, 2014 6:55 pm|
Yesterday, the almost 200,000 followers of @OccupyWallSt — viewed by many as the original and even “official” voice of the movement — were in for a surprise.
|By: Kit OConnell Wednesday December 25, 2013 6:01 pm|
Here’s a swig of actual news to wash down all those twee “human interest” pieces sticking in your throat.
|By: Kit OConnell Monday June 3, 2013 4:35 pm|
The action was a success, bringing increased awareness of Manning’s case. At the end of the night when I parked the Manning float and took a rest on a bench at a nearby coffee shop, it was fun to watch people stop to pose with him for photos as they left Queerbomb.
|By: Kit OConnell Friday March 22, 2013 3:15 pm|
Can Anonymous be destroyed with enough arrests and punitive sentences?
|By: Kit OConnell Thursday March 7, 2013 6:04 pm|
Some of you are probably familiar with me as the weekday editor of MyFDL or from my work as the FDL correspondent on stories like the Gulf Port 7 trial. This week, I’m bringing the SXSW Interactive conference to the Lake.