June 05, 2007

Open Letter to SDS about the June 10th March in DC

Regarding DC SDS's call for a feeder march at the June 10th protest against the Israeli occupation of the Palestinian West Bank, East Jerusalem, and the Gaza Strip:
Any actions SDS takes on June 10th should be IN SOLIDARITY with Palestinian Americans, Arab Americans and their co-sponsoring organizations since they are affected most directly by the consequences of the demonstration.
SDS should allow these groups to frame the issues for themselves, and when we support them, we should do so in accordance with their own vision. In this spirit of solidarity, SDS must respect the fact that many Arab American folks already face enormous discrimination and oppression in the US. With this in mind we need to be accountable to them and respect their strategic and tactical visions when we demonstrate at this event.
Therefore, we ask that SDSers in DC on June 10th leave their shields and colored flags at home. We ask that SDSers not hide their faces with bandanas or kaffiyehs . There may be a time and place for those tactics, but this demonstration is not one of them. If some individuals employ these unaccountable tactics, we urge SDSers not join with them. As long as Palestinian Americans, Arab Americans and their co-sponsoring organizations are seeking to avoid the image of and perception (or misperception) of aggression and violence in this demonstration, out of respect, we should as well. All SDS-related plans should be completely transparent and available for potential participants beforehand.
We, as SDS, can use this march to start making long term connections with the individuals and groups participating, and begin the process of building trust and solidarity. Together we can build a large, diverse and strategically militant movement.
In solidarity,
Lindsay Hagerman - University of Delaware SDS
Meaghan Linick - Pace/NYC SDS
Uruj Sheikh - Pace/NYC SDS
Kimberly Egge - Pace SDS
Aaron Petcoff - Wayne State/Detroit SDS
Aric Miller - Detroit SDS
Faye Bibeau - Philly SDS
Jonathan McIntosh - Boston SDS
Jason Lydon - Boston SDS
Charlie Arpe - Boston SDS
Michael Gould-Wartofsky - Harvard SDS
Patrick St. John - DC SDS
Jessica Rapchik - Antioch College SDS
Josh Kahn Russell - Bay Area SDS
Kelly Lee - Harvard SDS