Following the arrests of five protesters at last year’s Glasgow Pride, one of the arrested, a member of the Clydeside IWW branch, after a postponement of their original court date, is now facing trial on the 8th of March. Clydeside IWW have organised a solidarity protest and published a call for solidarity, reproduced here.
Clydeside Industrial Workers of the World call on all political organisations, groups and individuals sharing an emancipatory, anti-capitalist vision to support and attend the demonstration outside Glasgow Sherriff Courts on the 8th of March 2018, in solidarity with the IWW member arrested with the Red and Black bloc in last year’s Glasgow Pride.
Panos Theodoropoulos of the IWW was arrested while attempting to prevent the harassment and unjust arrest of a 16 year old during the Glasgow Pride march. The 16 year old had been targeted for holding a sign with the slogan ‘This Faggot Fights Fascists’. The police used extensive physical force on Panos, tackled him to the ground, and subsequently held him in custody for over 30 hours. Thankfully, the police dropped all charges on the 16-year-old, though they still see the need to drag Panos through the courts, for attempting to prevent what they basically admitted was a wrongful arrest!
The arrested comrades were participating in the ‘Red and Black Bloc’, organised by queer members of the IWW as an anti-capitalist, anti-fascist presence in an increasingly commercialised and depoliticized Pride.
In the same Pride march the police arrested 3 trans activists protesting Pride’s decision to have police lead. These arrestees have not been issued court dates as the police continue to ‘search for evidence’. We know from experience that the police don’t like attempts to undermine them or their attempts at ‘community outreach’. We are committed to ongoing solidarity with these arrestees, along with all those in the trans community who face harassment from the police.
At the same time, the fact that Panos’s court date is set for International Women’s Day gives us the opportunity to highlight how seemingly different struggles are intimately connected. Patriarchy, racism and heteronormativity are crucial elements of the system of repression we are living in. As imprisonment and social control increasingly penetrate our precarious lives, we extend our solidarity to the increasing number of women prisoners in the UK and to the members of the trans community who are not only imprisoned but also suffer from being misgendered by the authorities and disproportionately experience violence and harassment. We therefore encourage everyone to participate in the various events organised around Glasgow for IWD (provided below).
When activists are targeted simply for protesting, court solidarity becomes a crucial part of the fight to defend our fundamental rights to protest. Let it be shown that the movement refuses to accept the criminalisation of protesters, whether now or in the future. Let us lay the foundations, in our budding movements, for lasting, practical political solidarity.
As the IWW slogan goes, ‘an injury to one is an injury to us all’.
DROP ALL CHARGES!
JOIN US AT THE SOLIDARITY DEMONSTRATION OUTSIDE GLASGOW SHERRIF COURT ON THE 8TH OF MARCH AT 09.00!
Original statement released by Clydeside IWW following the arrests: https://www.facebook.com/clydesideiww/posts/1446956275339793
Original Statement by Anti-Capitalist Queers following the arrests: https://acqueescotland.wordpress.com/2017/10/26/anti-capitalist-queers-mission-statement/
Anti-Capitalist Queers/ Pride 5 Solidarity page: https://www.facebook.com/ACQueeScotland/
Facebook Solidarity Demo event page: https://www.facebook.com/events/1602005823251977/
Other events for International Women’s Day in Glasgow:
Feminist and anti-capitalist rally at the La Pasionaria statue on the Clyde (assembling at 4.30 pm).
Solidarity4Repeal demonstration at George Square @ 18.00, in solidarity with women and pregnant people across the island of Ireland. Event Page:
Unite Community Event for IWD @ 18.00 in George Smith House: https://www.facebook.com/events/220688251837959/
Please spread the word. Guest list is private.