Going our own way

This was first published in our November bulletin. We felt that we ought to put this out as a separate blog post in order that everyone knows where we stand. Hopefully, we can then move on and focus on what needs doing out here in the south of Essex. A few minor amends have been made to this piece since its original publication.

Those who know us will be aware that our relationship with the anarchist movement has become increasingly strained over the years.

The deterioration started with the acrimonious fallout from the ill fated 2017 London Anarchist Bookfair when divisions over gender identity led to some pretty ugly scenes. After a process of analysing the issues at stake, the stance we drew was one veering towards being gender critical but not fully embracing that position. That lost us quite a few comrades. Some were lost because we were calling for a degree of nuance in the debate/row.

The deterioration accelerated with the Covid crisis in 2020. Our increasingly sceptical stance towards lockdowns and our critique of the great reset that the crisis is being leveraged to bring about pushed us even further towards a minority position. One that sadly, has become untenable.

We still adhere to what we see as anarchist principles. However, rather than dealing with the tensions our stance has generated, we’ve decided to back out of the anarchist movement and focus on the day to day shite we have to deal with out here in the badlands of the Thames estuary. Shite like corrupt/incompetent councils, council spending cuts, crumbling housing estates, crumbling public infrastructure, town centre wrecking developers, crap employers (public and private sector) slum landlords, unwanted road schemes, gentrification, air pollution, flooding…the list goes on… Shite that doesn’t care how anyone defines themselves or is defined by others, because when it hits, we’re all in it together, regardless.

We’d like to think that some day, we’ll be able to resume a fuller working relationship with the anarchist movement. The door is always open. However, with the way things stand at the moment, it’s best all round that we go our separate ways and focus our energy on getting stuff done rather than energy sapping infighting.

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