Hamilton ON: The Tower's Statement on Recent Events

  • Posted on: 7 March 2018
  • By: Anonymous (not verified)

From The Tower, Hamilton's Anarchist Social Centre, after their windows were smashed Sunday night and then their door kicked in Tuesday night

We’ve held off on making any public statements so far because it’s really not our desire to have conversations on the internet, such a toxic and alienating place. But having had our space attacked twice in the last couple of days, we feel like it’s important to share a few reflections and be clear about where we stand.

First, no, the actions on Locke and Aberdeen on Saturday night were not organized by the Tower, but yes, we support what happened and are in solidarity with those who carried them out. Class war is happening every day in this city, with constant attacks on poor and working people. It’s disappointing that so many only care about the occasional moment when a bit of anger flows back the other way. The ongoing effects of gentrification in this city are heartbreaking – waves of displacement, growing violence, and intensifying poverty. You cannot expect for all of this to just be swept under the proverbial rug. We have zero tears to shed for Locke st.

We feel that a single family being evicted is far worse than everything that happened on Locke St, even if you believe that running luxury businesses is a neutral act. And the level of outrage is particularly despicable considering that there have been two random stabbings of women in the last few days as well. It’s beyond disgusting to see conversations about artisan donuts being prioritized over conversations about violence against women.

This isn’t just whataboutism, this is us picking sides. When shit goes down, we aren’t on the side of the rich and business class. We’re in solidarity with everyone who resists the dominant powers in this city and we make any tactical criticisms we have privately. We oppose all repression and all collaboration with the police.

We’ve received several specific threats from far-right groups in the last few days foreshadowing the attacks on our space. Unsurprisingly, the local business class and the white supremacists who organized anti-immigrant demos in the city last year have found themselves on the same side.

All the dramatics from Locke St show that they expected not only to make money pursuing their self-interest and ignoring its impacts on others, they expected to also be loved for it. We aren’t “shocked and horrified” by being attacked because we never expected the powerful and their bootlickers in this city to thank us for opposing them.

We know it’s not boutiques that are the main driver of gentrification and the suffering it brings; it’s real estate investment, speculation, and the municipal policies that encourage them. Small business are often visible and vocal in cheerleading, but aren’t the ones redeveloping whole blocks or carrying out mass evictions. What they have done, though, is to put themselves on the side of the speculators and landlords, positioning themselves to profit off forces that harm most of their neighbours. We’ve chosen to critique and oppose them in the past because of their alliance with the rich and the big capitalists, and though they’re not most responsible, their actions do have real consequences.

To be clear, we won’t be filing police reports over this, but rather dealing with it autonomously and drawing on networks of mutual aid. The Tower will continue hosting the kinds of events and groups it always has, putting resources in common and sharing ideas. The events of the past few days change nothing about our project or our politics and we call on everyone with whom we’ve shared moments of struggle in the past to take some deep breaths and realize that although things are more intense right now, nothing has really changed.



Stay safe and strong folks! Great analysis. The shitstorm will pass, much respect from the west coast!

thoughts and prayers <3

There's White supremachists in Hamilton? Whoa. Could help to have more infos to track them down... Or maybe they're from somewhere else in thre GTA. Thought of Hamilton as overwhelmingly liberal.

It's 2018, there's noisy (albeit usually small) alt-right factions in almost every major city in the US and Canada. Most of them are relatively harmless, some of them aren't.

Solidarity from the West Coast

I support the action, fuck the gentrifiers and the yuppies! They love playing the victim but the fact is they don't give a shit about the plight of the poor and the homeless and the press will never give any press to those who are harmed by gentrification. They simply don't care.

Like that stupid "in bed" fortune cookie game, just append "I don't care about the poor, the homeless or the community ... the only community members I appreciate are those who can pay to stay in it." to everything they say.

Everyone understands the paradox that is an organized anonymous anarchist website right? Sad. Get a job and read some books you ddidn't get from Westdale.

Oh damn never thought about that...

I don't understand the rise in popularity of this Trump-style posting ("Here's some talking point followed by an adjective. Sad.") I see it all the time in online comments now. At first I thought it was just being done ironically, but at this point it's gotten so pervasive that any original irony would have already been lost. It could be observation bias where I just notice it more now because it's associated with Trump, but I don't think that's all it is. Do people read this and think it sounds convincing? Because every time I see something written in this structure, I can't help but groan a little inside, and it makes me involuntarily dismiss the author a bit, even if they were trying to make a point I would normally agree with (though admittedly, that's not typically the case).

great advertising for semo distro tho amirite?

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