A 350 mile ride from DC to Pittsburgh for solidarity with all social movements under attack.
Against State Repression
What we’re fighting for
With fascism comes increased state repression, and with increased state repression must come resistance. On January 20th, 2017, Donald Trump was inaugurated as the 45th President of the United States while 200+ people were illegally kettled and brutalized by police less than 2 miles away. In North Dakota that week, police ramped up harassment of the Standing Rock encampment, to be followed by an order on January 24th to resume and speed up creation of the Dakota Access Pipeline. Now, J20 protestors face 8+ felony charges and decades in prison; the Standing Rock encampment was set ablaze and abandoned a month after Inauguration.
Since Trump’s Inauguration, “felony riot” charges have emboldened police and prosecutors across the country, who have used those charges at will to intimidate and punish anti-fascists. Federal prosecutors have set up fishing expeditions through grand juries such as in North Carolina, a tactic they also used against Standing Rock. Laws have been proposed to further criminalize protest and legalize hitting protestors blocking traffic, an action which killed anti-fascist Heather Heyer in Charlottesville. Meanwhile, white supremacists, Nazis, and self-described patriots alike have openly organized violence against marginalized communities and anti-fascists. They have not been met with the same conspiracy charges, police violence, or legislative attacks. Instead, they are legitimized through state inaction or at worst accepted by law enforcement as further arms of the state.
This is not new. In a state built on white supremacy and native genocide, state repression of activists, people of color, and indigenous people is as old as this nation. More recently under Obama, we saw the National Guard sent into Ferguson, attacking Black Lives Matter protests with military grade weaponry. Marches across the country have been met with tear gas, riot shields, and arrests before Trump was even elected. Some BLM organizers face decades in prison while others struggle with continued state surveillance. However, with fascism on the rise, there is an increased threat to our freedom and safety both from state and non-state actors.
We ride to build support for the fight against state repression. In our bike ride from L and 12th St NW, the site of the mass arrest on J20, to Pittsburgh, another regional hub of anti-fascism, we aim to raise $10,000 for groups fighting and facing repression on the front lines. One of the essential principles of anti-fascist resistance is mutual aid, meaning we share resources and take care of our comrades. This ride is our way of sending love through gathering material resources and bringing attention to these struggles as part of a larger narrative.
Please donate to our ride!
Why a long bike ride?
Riding your bike for over 300 miles is nothing to sneeze at. For many of us, this is our first time riding more than 10 miles at a time. Setting such a lofty personal goal shows how serious we are about raising $10,000 for our comrades in need. Will you help us get to that point?
Why go to Pittsburgh?
Besides Pittsburgh having one of the strongest anti-fascist presences on the eastern seaboard, it’s a city of significant radical history. It also happens to be a good distance from Washington, DC.
Who will be riding?
We are a small collective based in DC. Some of our riders are currently facing a litany of felony charges, some were in Charlottesville, and some are hoping to never face charges but bracing for the inevitable. All are unapologetically anti-fascist. We have been involved in organizing in the district and the DMV for well over a decade including such projects as anti-corporate globalization mobilizations, Occupy, Disrupt J20, Antifa, union organizing, after-school programs, shelter defense and Food Not Bombs.
I like to ride bikes, can I join?
The short answer is maybe. Our group is fully vouched, but drop us a line on our contact form and tell us about yourself, why you want to join, and what you’d contribute. We’ll be sure to get back to you.
How much of my donation is going to the groups?
All of it. In other words, 100% of your donation goes directly to these groups. We’re covering the cost of the ride, which is minimal, out of our pockets. On top of that, all riders are also making a donation. We’re not a nonprofit, nor are we profiting anything off this ride. No one is earning a salary. Nothing is offsetting the cost of food or gear. So, Every.Single.Dollar you donate goes to the organizations. Nothing goes to us.
Why aren’t all organizations and groups facing state repression represented here?
Great question. While more groups are facing state repression, we had to choose. For our first ride, we selected Dead City Legal Posse, One People’s Project, and St. Louis Legal Fund. We recognize this isn’t fully representative, but further dividing the pots yields a less meaningful amount of money to each fund. Depending on the outcomes of this ride, we will be considering another ride and dedicating it to other groups.
How are the funds distributed?
Each group - Dead City Legal Posse, One People’s Project, and St. Louis Legal Fund - receives one third of the funds raised.
Can I earmark more of my donation to one group?
Unfortunately, no. We think all these groups are super important to support so we’ll be dividing the donations equally.
I can’t make a monetary donation at this time, can I make an in-kind donation to the ride?
Totally, hit us up on the contact form and let’s chat!
For many fundraisers, people set up individual pages and we donate to ‘our person’, why no individual pages?
You’re right - usually people do set up individual pages, but most of these crowdsourcing, or peer-to-peer fundraising, campaigns are for cancer research, saving the environment, etc. We have a very real enemy – the state and their non-state fascist actors – and they will do everything in their power to silence us or put us in cages. In some riders’ cases, they are already attempting that through active prosecution. By not creating individualized fundraising pages, we are taking one small step to protect our community of riders from additional state repression, but we know, the thoughtcrime was committed long ago, and it’s only a matter of time before the talons of the illegitimate state tear through, yet again, our adopted family.
Where are you staying each night, I’d like to swing by?
Sorry y’all, this information is strictly on a need-to-know basis. As we are living in a time of heightened fascism, we know there are folks out there who support state repression and believe we shouldn’t exist, so we will not be sharing such information.
Will this ride end state repression?
Absolutely not. Let’s be real, this ride isn’t going to end state repression, but the more money we can raise to support our comrades with their backs against the wall, the more power we have to confront the fascist tirade.