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Equity for a Green New Deal at The Big One Trade Union hub

Stop the Cumbria Coal Mine: XRTU at The Big One

NEU Climate Change Network Paul Atkin

XRTU HUB at The Big One: Campaign Against Climate Change Trade Union Group

Rosemary: Platform at XRTU Hub, The Big One

Police Shot Atlanta Cop City Protester 57 Times, Autopsy Finds

By Natasha Lennard - The Intercept, April 20, 2023

It looks like Manuel “Tortuguita” Terán was executed by firing squad — underscoring why we must stop the massive police training center.

When 26-year-old Manuel “Tortuguita” Terán was shot dead by police during a brutal, multi-agency raid on the Defend Atlanta Forest, Stop Cop City encampment in January, the activist’s friends felt certain of two things: Tortuguita was murdered, and whatever narrative the police offered would be a lie.

Like clockwork, police officials claimed that Tortuguita shot first and hit a state trooper. In body camera footage that was later released — after police said none would be — one officer said that the cop had been shot by his fellow police. (Authorities dismissed the footage as speculation and said evidence did not support the remarks.) A previous, independent autopsy ordered by Tortuguita’s family found that the activist’s hands were raised when they were shot.

Then, on Wednesday night, DeKalb County Medical Examiner’s Office released its official autopsy report, which found no trace of gunpowder residue on Tortuguita’s hands. The young activist’s body was riddled with at least 57 gunshot wounds, including in their head, torso, hands, and legs. The medical examiner has ruled the death a homicide.

The abundance of evidence, including the government autopsy, doesn’t look like a group of police taking self-defensive action against a protester.

What it looks like is that the forest defender was executed by firing squad.

With so many gunshot wounds, the sheer brutality of Tortuguita’s killing is hard to fathom. Even if the autopsy report showed the activist had fired a gun, as police claimed, this would not have justified gunning them down in a storm of bullets.

Workers Aren’t Stupid: Dissecting Liberal Talking Points with David Griscom

#STOPCOPCITY March 2023 Week of Action

The Fight Against Cop City

By Amna A. Akbar - Dissent, Spring 2023

On Saturday, March 4, I arrived at Intrenchment Creek Park in DeKalb County, Georgia, for the first day of a week of action against a $90 million construction project undertaken by the Atlanta Police Foundation—a private entity, backed by local CEOs and political leaders, that advances police interests. The foundation wants to raze eighty-five acres of public forest to build the largest police training facility in the United States, complete with a firing range, a burn building, and a “kill house” designed to mimic urban combat scenarios. It also argues that the facility will boost morale among officers. The size and scale of the project, and the destruction and deforestation it will require, have led a growing number of activists, organizers, and community members to object to what they call “Cop City.” The campaign against Cop City is simultaneously a campaign to defend the Weelaunee Forest, the name used for the area by the Muscogee Creek people forcibly displaced by settlers from the land in the early 1800s before it became the site of the notorious Atlanta Prison Farm. These elements of the campaign—the histories on which it draws, what it’s fighting against and for, who it is bringing together, and how—have given it tremendous staying power despite extraordinary odds.

Locals often describe Atlanta as “a city in a forest,” with trees and a tree canopy covering almost half of the land. The ecosystem depends on this foliage, and activists say that the deforestation required to build the facility will harm air quality, hasten climate change, and contribute to flooding in predominantly poor and working-class Black and brown communities. The proposed development will further distance residents from accessible green space while bringing toxic waste closer. But the project will do more than fracture the largest green space in Atlanta. The activists fighting against Cop City argue that police violence itself constitutes an environmental hazard, and that toxic chemicals associated with explosives that could be used on the site will destroy the air, water, and land on which myriad forms of life depend.

The week of action I attended was organized in remembrance of Tortuguita, or Manuel Esteban Paez Terán, the twenty-six-year-old nonbinary forest defender killed by Georgia State Patrol on January 18. Activists I met affectionately abbreviated their name to “Tort.” While police originally claimed self-defense, body-camera footage and two different autopsies show police shot Terán thirteen or fourteen times and suggest they were sitting cross-legged with both hands up when the police fired. Terán’s mother has since come to Atlanta from Panama to file suit against the city for records of her child’s murder, and to demand justice with a growing coalition at her side.

Terán is the first environmental activist killed by police in recent U.S. history. Their death is part of an intensifying campaign of repression waged against protesters fighting environmentally destructive developments across the country, most famously the Standing Rock encampment against the Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL). The arrests, raids, and prosecutions evoke the Green Scare of the early 2000s, when the federal government infiltrated, surveilled, and prosecuted environmental and animal activists across the country. The recent protests, however, come at a time of greater popular recognition of the climate crisis—and the seeming futility of turning to elected officials to take climate action against the same corporations that fuel their campaigns and structure the economy.

In Atlanta, there have been three waves of arrests and at least as many forest raids since December. Sixty-eight people are facing variations on common charges brought against protesters—disorderly conduct, criminal trespass and assault, and obstruction of governmental administration. But forty-two among them face domestic terrorism charges, which carry a mandatory minimum of five years of incarceration and a maximum of thirty-five. The thin affidavits suggest the basis of the charges are affiliation with Defend the Atlanta Forest, “a group classified by the United States Department of Homeland Security as Domestic Violent Extremists.” (A DHS official told the Washington Post it never made such a classification.) Those who have been released on bond are prohibited from having contact with their codefendants or with Defend the Atlanta Forest. Multiple activists have insisted, however, that Defend the Atlanta Forest is not an organization at all: instead, it is a demand, a social media account, and a shorthand reference for a loosely affiliated group of autonomous individuals, protecting the land against encroachment and seemingly motivated by anarchist principles. This insistence is about their political commitments as much as it is a rejection of the state’s theory of criminalization.

Retired Union Members Across the U. S. Join Third Act, Say “Keep Fossil Fuels in the Ground”

By Bob Muehlenkamp - Portside, March 16, 2023

Over the last 6 months retired members from over 30 International Unions have joined Third Act, and are planning, and in some cases leading, rallies, marches, and demonstrations on 3/21/23–the Day of Action Against the Dirty Banks.

Bill McKibben recently formed Third Act, an organization designed as a vehicle for “elders” to engage directly in the two great existential issues of our time: the fight to save democracy and the climate crisis. Here’s how he describes Third Act’s mission:

“My generation should more actively join the climate movement following in the footsteps of a galvanized youth …. People in their third act are likely to have the skill, resources, time, and sometimes lots of grandchildren who can serve as an added incentive to act for the benefit of future generations.”

The Union page on the Third Act website  ( underlines the unique role retired union members can make to the climate crisis struggle:

We don’t have the time.

“In our working lives as trade unionists we organized, bargained contracts, fought bosses, elected officials, lobbied for and passed  legislation, joined with allies in common cause in the unending for economic, racial, and social justice.  We are in the front line of the fight to save democracy.  Every struggle takes time, compromise, and a continuing agenda–la lucha continua.


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