A text by an unnamed autonomous anarchist collective mostly centered in so-called Madison WI (Turtle Island).
Originally published by Distro 608.
Madison is dissatisfied with the activist masses– the purposeless assemblies, asking for much but doing little to take it back. Autonomous direct action groups are the future of Madison. These are small groups of people you already know, love, and want to fight with and for. You don’t have to recruit, collect signatures, or solicit the masses. You only need your own permission to fight for yourself.
One of the great things about militant direct action is that there is rarely a level of intervention that cannot be done by 1-5 people. You do not need, or honestly do not want, big numbers. The bigger they are, the harder they fall, and the deeper they drag us down with them. Recognition is overrated. We are the groups they’ve never heard of. Keeping things small keeps us safer from surveillance and targeting, and it allows us to be flexible in choosing our battles. The best way to directly oppose authoritarianism is to simply join the fight!
Walk away from the activist way of thinking, where you need dozens to hundreds of people, massive signal chats, a FB group, endorsement by local celebrities, and a snack committee, to do anything. You don’t need permission! Just. Fucking. Do. It. You, as an autonomous human being, do not have to place yourself under the authority of anyone else while struggling against the oppressive weight of fascism.
There is much internal conflict and disagreement over which tactics are most proper. That’s okay! Conflict is a part of life. Your only duty is to fight in the way that honors your spirit and the inherent dignity of all that exists.
Look, we get it. It can be scary to confront or attack authoritarianism deep within the imperial core, especially when you’ve never done it before. A big group can FEEL very safe. Breaking some windows (as a random example) feels so much easier once you have a group of 30+ people doing it. If you think about it though, the opposite is true. Those 30+ people draw far more state attention, before, during, and after the action, than 1-4 would. Among those 30+ people there is likely to be someone who won’t take the fall for you, someone who brags too much, and a few who gossip. Big groups feel safer, but with modern surveillance technology, they simply aren’t.
Anarchists across the US employ a diversity of tactics: distributing zines, tagging walls, slapping up stickers, disposing of eviction filings, and more that you should read about! Cut your teeth on something innocuous. Once you feel a little more practiced and confident, then go for the militant stuff. Or hell, if you feel ready, go for the big stuff.
The decision to hit back is yours to make. You are not alone when you walk that first step. All over Madison, people just like you are talking across the table about the need to protect vulnerable life from the grasp of the state. You don’t have to dream of other people creating actions for you to join. You have the ability and moral permission to fight!
Unnamed Autonomous Collective (UAC)