Little Teel Crossing | Rocky Mount, VA For the past several months I’ve been documenting pipeline resistance in Southwestern, VA; the place I grew up. This image was made several weeks ago as community members gathered to bear witness and protect a tree-sitter who had ascended earlier in the day after legal steps had been taken against ‘Ink’, another sitter who had successfully thwarted tree felling for a number of weeks. Ink sustained serious injury when MVP crews tried to cut despite their presence in a nearby tree. On the day pictured, a Marshall appeared ordering ‘Sprout’ into court in a matter of hours. I’ve started a funding page to support the continued work of this film as the story unfolds and as the pipeline is dug into the mountains. If you are willing or able please do share this effort and help this story reach others who are faced with obstacles that seem insurmountable. The fight continues. Link in bio.
I heard a man describe himself as a second generation fast-food worker yesterday while addressing the crowd at the @poorpeoplescampaign rally. He spoke of how his mother had given her body to the hard work that the industry demanded of her, while simply trying to provide for her children. The heart of this campaign beats from the voices of people who are giving of their time and energy to lead and educate the rest of us. If your morality harbors contempt for anyone who is living with the exhaustive reality of poverty, homelessness, job insecurity, or lack of education; there is always a choice to lay it down.
William | Washington DC Today I was lucky enough to spend time with this wonderful human, on the occasion of his first book release. I’ve had the joy of being alongside to see this process from inception to completion & to be able to see his craft grow stronger with each challenge that a task of this magnitude takes. Whatever people tell you about the company you keep, they’re talking about friends like him. I’m so excited to see the dreams he and his co-author @babywasu have shared with us through this writing. And you know I have to plug- so check out “As Black As Resistance; Finding the Conditions for Liberation” via @akpressdistro & go say hi while they make some stops in DC, Baltimore, Philly & NYC this week. Congratulations, and thank you dreaming vividly enough to speak this brave future into being.
On the banks of Teel Creek | Franklin County, VA ———————————————————— “It is in your self-interest to find a way to be very tender” - Jenny Holzer
This is not an anniversary | Last night I asked if he could hear me when I spoke to him and he hesitated, looking like he was searching for something before he replied: “almost- it’s not exactly hearing though.” ———————————————————— I hold these visits sacred, but try not to make them so precious as to forget how our departed walk alongside us, always. He would have been 63 in a couple weeks. I’ve felt him so deeply lately, in the mountains and in the spirit of the people I’ve met fighting for them. I’ve never been more certain that working in service of the things you love is the best kind of medicine.
Hellbender Autonomous Zone, Peters Mountain, VA | Still here, day 25 The group of supporters here gathered to celebrate in solidarity of ‘Nutty’ the occupant of the monopod tree blockade that has been preventing MVP pipeline from cutting down trees & continuing construction deadlines through the access gate on national forest property. The area has been given a 125 foot ‘safety’ perimeter, limiting access and view to the support camp. USFS Law Enforcement, Giles County, VA State Police and private MVP security forces have all been present in constant rotation 24/7. Nutty has been denied both food and water re-supply for nearly 2 weeks now. UPDATE: Day 26 | Three individuals were arrested (one later released) during an attempt to re-supply Nutty, 2 held overnight in Giles County jail before being released Monday morning.
Hellbender Autonomous Zone | Peter’s Mountain, VA Appalachian resistance feast. Homegrown, hunted & cooked over a fire, by a family who had come over from Monroe County, WV. USFS law enforcement continue to monitor campers and the monopod sitter closely, often harassing hikers as they make the hour 1/2 journey along the access road that has been closed off to the public and given a perimeter of 125 ft. forcing bushwhacking through steep, rocky terrain. Meanwhile, life at camp moves much differently. There’s not much else that’ll get folks as excited as the first ramps of the season.
Washington DC | What’s in a name? Tonight we made art reflecting our experiences of conflict; how it relates to our identity and the names or labels we are given. In this this tangled web of interaction, we placed our own labels first, along with topics that bring out difficult conversations in our personal lives. We wrote ‘gun control’ - ‘abortion’ - ‘Border wall’ - ‘slut’ - ‘redneck’ - ‘witch’ - ‘controlling’ - ‘bossy’. Then the group added their own words: ‘unlovable’ - ‘too black’ - ‘queer’ - ‘weirdo’ - ‘not black enough’ - ‘foreigner’. What exists in the names you have been given? What exists in the names you have given yourself?