This Is America #171: Four Thieves Vinegar Collective on DIY Abortion Pills; Week of Action to Defend the Atlanta Forest


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Welcome, to This Is America, August 10th, 2022.

On this episode, we feature three interviews, the first with Michael Laufer of the Four Thieves Vinegar Collective, a group of anarchists creating DIY biohacking tools with the intention of producing free to low cost medicine for people who lack access to care. In July, the group made waves at a hacker conference by announcing they had “developed a DIY kit to make and discreetly mail abortion medication…”

We also get an update on tenant organizing efforts at a mobile home park in upstate New York and hear from two participants in the ongoing fight to stop the construction of Cop City in the Atlanta forest. Together we discuss the recent week of action and how the movement is building.

All this and more, but first, let’s get to the news!

Living and Fighting

As this episode was wrapping up, Donald Trump’s resort home in Mar-a-Lago was raided by the FBI following reports earlier this week that Trump had tried to flush documents down the toilet and also destroy visitor logs and phone records. Destruction of such records could mean that Trump violated the Presidential Records Act, which in theory could bar Trump from running again for president. FBI agents reportedly took with them documents, electronics, and cell-phones from the raid. In a statement, Trump in classic conspiratorial tone, blamed the “Radical Left Democrats” for persecuting him and far-Right grifters across the spectrum quickly responded by escalating their rhetoric while Trump supporters called for protests against the FBI. Stay tuned This Is America for a deeper dive next week.

In Boston, MA, over 100 community members held antifascist banners and marched against repeated attacks and flash demonstrations by neo-Nazi groups.

Protestors chanted, “Cops & #Klan go hand in hand.” They say @bostonpolice protected the white supremacists who descended on #Boston recently. Many disagree w/ what they call @wutrain’s “plan to give more power & authority to the cops.” #LGBTQIA @Bos_Solidarity @wbznewsradio

— Suzanne Sausville (@wbzSausville) July 30, 2022

In Berkeley, CA, Los Angeles, CA, and Atlanta, GA, the fight to save autonomous space continues. Last week, protesters in Berkeley tore down fences and pushed back riot police from People’s Park, disabling construction machines and retaking the space. At the time of this writing, people remain at the park and have begun work again on the land while a judge has halted the construction of a student dormitory upon the historic site until October.

New Video: Contractor's Truck Set on Fire by Atlanta Forest Protectors🎞️

— Unicorn Riot (@UR_Ninja) August 8, 2022

In Atlanta, GA, a week of action in defense of the Atlanta forest wrapped up recently, with street actions, music festivals in the forest, and various educational and outreach events. A contractor’s vehicle was also set on fire, after a construction crew attempted to tear down a gazebo while people were under it. Check out our interview on this episode for a further report and be sure to watch It’s Going Down for a complete roundup of the week of action.

Happening now:

Forest defenders in Atlanta are resisting a multi-agency incursion into the south river forest. As Georgia power cuts down trees, defenders build burning barricades to slow their progress.@defendATLforest

— Midwest People's History (@MPHProject) August 3, 2022

In Los Angeles, people tore down fences around Echo Lake Park, dropping banners reading, “Community De-Fence.” This comes in response to ongoing attacks on the houseless community. Meanwhile in Oakland, private security tried to violently evict the ongoing occupation by parents, staff, and community members at Parker Elementary School, one of several schools recently closed by the Oakland Unified School District, a move which would force working-class students, largely of color, to travel much further to attend a public facility.

#Oakland Unified School District attempting to evict ongoing occupation of @saveparker510, which has been taken over by community members, families, and former staff after the school district voted to shutter the school. The occupation has been going on for over two months.

— It's Going Down (@IGD_News) August 5, 2022

Finally in New York, defenders of reproductive freedom once again faced off against far-Right protesters at a monthly defense of a local clinic. Clinic defenders were successful in holding off the anti-abortion demonstrators, even as police made several arrests of clinic defenders.

From our clinic defense this morning. It was tough, antis were wily & some of us were brutally arrested by the NYPD (stay tuned for jail support updates).

But we won't let them take away our victory. This was the view outside the clinic today, antis blocked. A beautiful sight 🥲

— NYC for Abortion Rights (@nycforabortion) August 6, 2022

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photo: Screenshot from Unicorn Riot

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