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Chronicles from the state of emergency No. 3 – Wall paper from #Trentino

Comrades from Trentino (Italian territory) published their third wall paper about the current state of emergency which is now being pasted in several cities. You can read No. 1 here and No. 2 here.

Originally published by Il Rovescio. Translated by Enough 14.

Orignal Wall paper (Italian) as PDF file:

Nothing will ever be the same again

That’s what they’re telling us. Since we cannot question industrial society – whose constant flight forward will lead to ever more lethal epidemics with increasing frequency – we must push even harder on the accelerator of technological solutions. Since we cannot stop deforestation, the obsessive extraction of raw materials, the poisoning of air and water, intensive agriculture and livestock farming, artificial food production and the devitalization of human beings, we must get used to live with pandemics. 75% of the new infectious diseases are transmitted to humans by wild animals of which every natural habitat has been destroyed; then, the fine dust produced by pollution (as a member of the Italian Society of Environmental Medicine recently wrote) acts as “highways of contagion”. So? Do we stop this insane race and use the remaining habitats for what has remained of wildlife? No. All ahead, under digital control!

Nothing must be like it was before

That’s what we say. As soon as possible, we open up spaces for discussion and organisation from below. In cities, neighborhoods, villages. And let us face everything that concerns our lives together, from immediate material needs to medicine, from the economic restructuring that will come brutally to the direction we want to give to society.Let them not come and tell us that we must pay for it, once again. Don’t tell us about big sacrifices to relaunch their economy, automation of production, 5G and other rubbish. The virus is not the cause, but the consequence of the industrial disease. And we have to start from there, finally.

International tent Strike

The proposal has been spreading in several countries since April 1 (United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Sweden, Chile, Spain…). The Tenants’ Union of Gran Canaria, for example, writes in its invitation “to the entire working class and tenants to support a general strike and the permanent rent strike”: “The current situation could not be more alarming, not only in terms of health, but also in economic and social terms. The measures taken by the government, which declared a state of emergency in response to Covid-19, are clear anti-workers measures, completely superficial (limited moratorium on mortgages) and they do not care about basic needs: thousands of families who live a from day to day, who survive on low-paid jobs, people who have been laid off illegally, families left without income because of isolation; everyone has to cope with the impossibility of paying rent”. And he proposes, in addition: “Houses abandoned in the hands of funds, finance companies and banks (especially those that have been saved with public money) must be socialized and made available to the thousands of people or families who find themselves without housing today”.

Words and barriers

“A tyrant has turned our lives upside down, and it’s called coronavirus.” Hospitals become “trenches”, while the dead are transported by military vehicles. So war scenarios open up in our minds with all their symbolic and emotional significance. Because metaphors evoke images and concepts. Language is anything but neutral: it gives form to opinions, it enunciates relationships that unfold over time. Words create the world. They influence each of us and lead us to act, in one way rather than another.

Treating a disease as if it is a war makes one obedient, docile and, in perspective, designated victims.

The choice between this or that word is not a matter of language, but of political decision. Politicians: you are the advocates of fear and hatred against each other. You have found in the virus a further opportunity to draw boundaries and erect barriers.

Now that we’re the potentially infected

The containers that the Austrian State had prepared at the Brenner Pass [1] for anti-immigrant use have been used for weeks for coronavirus checks on people arriving from Italy. The “exceptional measures” underway should make us reflect on what has always happened to the latter, to the undocumented, to that part of humanity that can be exploited as long as necessary and then leave them to die or repatriate. Beyond the privileges that we no longer perceive, there are those who are sadly accustomed to a daily routine of separation, controls, visas, “who knows when we will be able to see each other again”. While goods are moving and thousands of human beings are trapped on the borders of Europe, perhaps we might notice that the border virus does not stop in a few weeks.

Beyond the borders, the prison struggles

For the riots that broke out in the prisons on 7 March, newspapers and television stations hastened to talk about direct action by “organized crime “. (The same script, not surprisingly, was then used to criminalize those who tried to get out of supermarkets without paying for their groceries). Someone spoke instead of “organized plan” by an unspecified “anarchist hand”. Unthinkable for the State to admit that these are spontaneous revolts and capable of communicating fast with each other, grown up in captivity in places of torture, years of beatings, widespread overcrowding, repellent hygienic conditions; because they would have been discussed differently, and more would have been talked about. The fact is that revolts are also breaking out in Spain, France, Brazil, USA, Belgium, Venezuela, Iran, Peru, Sri Lanka, Colombia (where twenty-three prisoners died in the Bogota prison alone)… Now they have to talk about them. Even states like Iran and Turkey have released 110,000 and 90,000 prisoners respectively. Even the UN secretariat calls on governments to take urgent measures against the spread of contagion in the global prisons, where 12 and a half million people are imprisoned. It is precisely the prisoners who are the first to suggest to us that the immense state of emergency of which we are the prisoners today can and must bring the opportunities to free themselves and to set us free, looking beyond our borders.


[1] The Brenner Pass (German: Brennerpas, shortly Brenner. Italian: Passo del Brennero? is a mountain pass through the Alps which forms the border between Italy and Austria.

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