Disruption at Book Fairs

Discussion in 'protest, direct action and demos' started by PeterTCA, Dec 2, 2018.

  1. PeterTCA

    PeterTCA Well-Known Member

    Following on from the London, Liverpool and Manchester Anarchist Book Fairs a pattern reveals itself:

    A group applies for a stall or a talk. The organisers refuse, and write to the group giving reasons why they should not attend.

    Nonetheless, the group turn up. They are asked to leave. They refuse. A dialogue ensues. Eventually they are physically removed.

    There follows headline news on how free speech was brutally denied.

    It is questionable whether the groups involved are actually Anarchists. Yet they are swift to claim that Anarchists should conduct themselves in particular ways. Their idea of Anarchism is the hackneyed one of "Anything Goes" or "So what?" In fact, relativism is merely the flip-side of obedience. Neither side requires any consideration of the consequences of one's acts.

    Yesterday's disruption in Manchester threw a negative shadow over an otherwise comradely gathering. Anarchism's erstwhile openness permits any uninvited group to walk in and use the fair to promote their own agenda. To score a particular point they are happy to see the event destroyed. In future we need to protect ourselves. As was pointed out they are free to put in the work to host their own fair, their own meetings.
    Nigel, tim and Argonia like this.
  2. Pickman's model

    Pickman's model Starry Wisdom

    Perhaps you could outline what happened at Manchester
    TopCat and emanymton like this.
  3. Argonia

    Argonia Happy go licky

    Peter has posted 139 times and only received one like so I have doubled his like quotient.
  4. Threshers_Flail

    Threshers_Flail Well-Known Member

    Four TERFS showed up and started handing out leaflets. As soon as the venue's management were informed they were asked to leave to which they repeatedly refused. Two of them eventually left, with the other two needing to be carried out. Was awkward as it was men physically removing women, few bystanders got involved on the side of the TERFS because of this.

    Apart from that yesterday's book fair in Manchester was a success, some good stalls and cracking speakers.
    Riklet and Pickman's model like this.
  5. PeterTCA

    PeterTCA Well-Known Member

    I do not want to get into a right or wrong debates - merely recognise a pattern.

    In brief, a group of TERFs arrived and began handing out a package of leaflets. They were asked to leave. A lengthy "dialogue"
    took place that used up considerable time and space.
    Pickman's model likes this.
  6. LynnDoyleCooper

    LynnDoyleCooper Up against the wall motherfucker.

    They were anarchist women (and one man I think) wanting to discuss issues with aspects of some trans perspectives. They asked for a talk/discussion beforehand (one of their speakers was planned to be a trans women) and they were refused. They asked for a stall, they were refused. So a few of them gave out a few leaflets at the Bookfair. They were asked to leave having given out some leaflets when they were sitting down talking to each other. They were told a variety of reasons for having to leave including, 'You're TERFs', 'You're the same as racists', 'You've broken the safer spaces policy', and 'that the leaflets were violence' although people were also repeatedly saying they didn't have to have read the leaflets to know they should leave. They refused and were physically carried out by a few men.
  7. LynnDoyleCooper

    LynnDoyleCooper Up against the wall motherfucker.

    A few of the stalls weren't anarchist at all, as I suspect neither were the men throwing the women out, so let's stop throwing that around as an intended insult as to why they shouldn't be there, especially as I know that the women involved are very definitely anarchists.

    I think going to a Bookfair to give out leaflets that you know are going to result in you being thrown out and causing chaos in the meantime is not really that useful thing to do personally, but I can see that if you want to discuss this stuff there's not many options left to you when you're told you can't have a meeting or a stall.
    Last edited: Dec 2, 2018
    q_w_e_r_t_y, Nigel, baldrick and 8 others like this.
  8. andysays

    andysays Defiantly non-premium member

    OP seems a bit short of actual info.

    For those of us not in the know, who were the organisers of this event?

    Have they issued any sort of statement yet?

    And are those posting about what happened doing so from having witnessed the events at first hand or are have they heard about them from some other source?
    Pickman's model likes this.
  9. sunnysidedown

    sunnysidedown caput mortuum

    can someone post a photo/copy of the leaflet that was given out?
    Pickman's model likes this.
  10. LynnDoyleCooper

    LynnDoyleCooper Up against the wall motherfucker.

    I think they were giving small info packs out with a few leaflets/articles in.

    The event was organized by a very few people in Manchester, same few people that have put on the last ones I think. It was held here
    Partisan – Manchester's Co-operative Arts and Social Space

    I don't think it was a big dramatic deal tbh, especially at a gathering of political radicals that profess to be working towards a violent overthrow of the State and capitalism.
    tim and Pickman's model like this.
  11. Serge Forward

    Serge Forward Well-Known Member

    Was it the badly named "Woke Anarchist" statement they were handing out?
  12. danny la rouge

    danny la rouge Without music, life would be a mistake.

    I don’t know that statement, but I hate the term and concept “woke”. It’s just another way of saying everyone else is deluded.
    albionism, tim, Smokeandsteam and 7 others like this.
  13. Rob Ray

    Rob Ray Irony is well sad

    No they didn't. They knew full well that they were breaking the Manchester bookfair's very clear ban on transphobic propagandising. They did it anyway to cause a scene so they could then claim victimhood when they were removed from the premises. Again. I see Helen's given up on pretending she's not a core participant btw, very sad that she's got mixed up with this manipulative bullshit.
    nyxx, cantsin, Thimble Queen and 3 others like this.
  14. Serge Forward

    Serge Forward Well-Known Member

    Which is why I said "badly named" when I should have said shitly named.
    danny la rouge likes this.
  15. LynnDoyleCooper

    LynnDoyleCooper Up against the wall motherfucker.

    Nigel and Pickman's model like this.
  16. LynnDoyleCooper

    LynnDoyleCooper Up against the wall motherfucker.

    I don't think the Manchester @ Bookfair people had anything to do with their meeting or stall being banned, it was Partisan that refused it as far as I know.
  17. Rob Ray

    Rob Ray Irony is well sad

    Yes, seen it. Entirely unimpressed.
  18. Serge Forward

    Serge Forward Well-Known Member

    Hmm... I was after confirmation because I was told by someone present that's what was being handed out. If it wasn't I'll shut up.
  19. FridgeMagnet

    FridgeMagnet Administrator

    I'm not a historian of these things but is this really the first time that this has happened? That someone has thought they should be allowed to be there and other people haven't?
  20. butchersapron

    butchersapron blood on the walls

    The Cunningham amendment is shit peter.
  21. LynnDoyleCooper

    LynnDoyleCooper Up against the wall motherfucker.

    New Internationalist, well anarchist. Less records and vegan cup cakes than other years though, one more step closer towards the revolution comrades.
    Nigel likes this.
  22. Rob Ray

    Rob Ray Irony is well sad

  23. butchersapron

    butchersapron blood on the walls

    Thought you were a trained journalist?
  24. LynnDoyleCooper

    LynnDoyleCooper Up against the wall motherfucker.

    Considering the OP was throwing around accusations that the people thrown out weren't even anarchists, I think it's entirely relevant to make a quip that some of the stalls definitely weren't. But please don't start over-analyzing my posts for hidden meanings.
  25. Rob Ray

    Rob Ray Irony is well sad

    Bit of a difference between tolerating leftie non-anarchists and giving space over to non-anarchist groups with a history of actively disrupting anarchist bookfair events and which overtly refuse the Ts&Cs though isn't there. Having less tolerance for bullshit which isn't even from our own movement isn't an entirely illogical note to make.
    nyxx and SpookyFrank like this.
  26. Fozzie Bear

    Fozzie Bear Well-Known Member

    I'm sure we could wrap this all up very easily* if none of the people handing out the leaflets were anarchists, but last time I checked a good few people considered Helen Steel to be one. Which complicates things.

    *or not, as the hundreds of pages of bile on this subject on Urban 75 would tend to suggest.
    Nigel and Pickman's model like this.
  27. MadeInBedlam

    MadeInBedlam Arm the mentally ill Enforced Holiday

    What was being given out?
  28. Magnus McGinty

    Magnus McGinty IdProle

    It’s also used mockingly; so depends on the context.
    danny la rouge likes this.
  29. DaveCinzano


    There's a lot to parse in here, but given recent history and this particular subject it would seem likely that doing not a jot on that front would save countless hours of bilious disagreement, cross-purpose arguing and uncomradely name-calling and still end in the same place.
    Pickman's model and maomao like this.
  30. emanymton

    emanymton A cat politely sat on the flaming gardener.

    Putting aside the rights and wrongs of a particular situation, something that is really starting to fuck me off is the idea that freedom of speech means the right to a platform. It doesn't .
    nyxx, cantsin, Thimble Queen and 6 others like this.

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