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Cities Across The US Are Mobilizing To Honor Tortuguita’s Birthday

And Stop Cop City.

Supporters of the fight against Cop City in so-called Atlanta, Georgia are planning solidarity demonstrations, educational events, benefit concerts, and solidarity events to mark the birthday of anarchist and forest defender Tortuguita. This call for continued action comes after forty-two people now face “domestic terrorism” charges for simply “their participation in the movement, with arrest warrants citing the flimsiest grounds, including protesters having mud on their shoes and the number for a legal support group scrawled on their arms.”

Moreover, the call for continued solidarity comes as the Dekalb County Medical Examiner has released the damning results of their autopsy, which directly contradicts claims made by law-enforcement that Tortuguita fired upon them, causing them to fire back and kill them in mid-January of this year, when police carried out a raid on protest encampments in the Weelaunee forest.

As Natasha Lennard wrote for the Intercept:

DeKalb County Medical Examiner’s Office released its official autopsy report, which found no trace of gunpowder residue on Tortuguita’s hands. The young activist’s body was riddled with at least 57 gunshot wounds, including in their head, torso, hands, and legs. The medical examiner has ruled the death a homicide.

The abundance of evidence, including the government autopsy, doesn’t look like a group of police taking self-defensive action against a protester.

What it looks like is that the forest defender was executed by firing squad.

In response, supporters of the movement against Cop City are calling for solidarity events and actions around Earth Day and Tortuguita’s birthday. From a post on Stop Cop City Solidarity:

The destruction of the Weelaunee forest has officially begun. Hundreds of trees were cut down last week to be replaced by hundreds of police officers and dozens of pieces of construction equipment preparing Cop City. They’ve charged our friends and families with domestic terrorism, attacked an all-ages music festival, destroyed treehouses and campsites, shot us with pepper bullets, and systematically ignored the voices of local residents. They murdered our friend Tortuguita, while they were sitting down with their hands up.

And yet our movement has never been stronger. Tens of thousands of people across the country have begun to mobilize to Stop Cop City, challenging white supremacy and fighting for a shared future. We’ve seen each community meeting, direct action, petition, press conference, concert, dance party, picket, week of action, and march expand and strengthen support for this movement. The pressure is working, and Cop City has lost all legitimacy in the eyes of ordinary people: board members are resigning from the Atlanta Police Foundation and the mayor’s advisory committees while new scandals and ethics violations continue to emerge. Mayor Dickens and the APF think they can push through construction before their fragile coalition crumbles completely. We will prove them wrong.

April 22nd is Earth Day. The next day, April 23rd, is Tortuguita’s birthday party. We call on all of you celebrate the Earth and honor Tortuguita’s memory by fighting with us on a new front: the companies insuring the construction of Cop City. Currently Scottsdale Insurance, and its parent company Nationwide, are providing crucial insurance to the Atlanta Police Foundation in their construction project. If they were to revoke their coverage, all work would stop immediately until the APF found another insurer. Nationwide Insurance has many large clients, and the APF is only a tiny fraction of their business. If the political costs of insuring the Atlanta Police Foundation begin to outweigh the nominal profits Nationwide makes on this contract, they will drop Cop City.

Check out our roundup of events below. Contact us at info [at] itsgoingdown [dot] org to let us know about an event happening near you.

Upcoming Events

Portland, OR: April 21st, dance party and fundraiser, Irving Park. 7 PM.

Portland, OR: April 23rd, vigil in remembrance, Washington Park by the Rose Garden. 5 PM.

Eugene, OR: April 29th, march in solidarity with Stop Cop City movement, 1175 Charnelton. 6 PM.

Boise, ID: April 21st, benefit show and raffle. 6: 30 PM.

Tucson, AZ: April 18th – 27th, Week for Weelaunee.

Durango, CO: April 22nd, Earth Day celebration, 10 AM. More info.

Chicago, IL: April 29th, dance party and fundraiser. 8 PM.

Cleveland, OH: April 22nd, event honoring Tortuguita. 11 AM.

Indianapolis, IN: April 21st, benefit show. 8 PM.

Indianapolis, IN:  April 22nd, Earth Day celebration, 2424 MLK Street. 10 AM.

Bloomington, IN: April 23rd, community hike and picnic, 3400 N Headley road. 12 PM.

Minneapolis, MN: April 22nd, breakfast benefit, Seward Cafe. 1 PM.

Minneapolis, MN: April 22nd, rally and march, 28th and Longfellow. 1 PM.

Chapel Hill, Carborro, and Durham, NC: April 20th – 24th, films, teach-ins, rallies, and a noise demo. More info here.

Charlotte, NC: April 23rd, community gathering, Freedom Park. 2 PM.

Washington DC: April 23rd, community gathering, Malcolm X Park. 3 PM.

Savannah, GA: April 23rd, community gathering, Forsyth Park. 2 PM.

Atlanta, GA: April 21st – 23rd, Stop Cop City Earth Day events.

Atlanta, GA: April 23rd, panel on Environmental Racism, Policing, and the Law, Neighborhood church. 3 PM. More info.

Atlanta, GA: April 24th, walkout and rally, 2 PM.

Brooklyn, NY: April 23rd, noise demo, Dayton Manor. 5 PM.

Storrs, CT: April 25th, community discussion at University of Connecticut. 6 PM.

Forest defenders in Atlanta are also calling for solidarity events across the month of May and a week of action in Atlanta from June 24th – July 1st.

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