With a theme of “Organizing Against Fascism,” Issue 28 packs a punch with writings by political prisoner Herman Bell and other imprisoned authors, transcriptions of recent talks by Ruthie Gilmore, Mariame Kaba, and Tarso Luís Ramos, and features art by political prisoners in the Philippines who are resisting the attacks of a fascistic regime.
The pieces in this issue are aimed at sharpening an understanding our current political moment, equipping us with the knowledge of what our movements for abolition and liberation are up against. While we have seen just the beginning of a Trump presidency’s disastrous consequences for people in the US and all over the world, we know that he is not exceptional. In a talk hosted by The Center for Political Education and transcribed here, Tarso Luís Ramos articulates the political forces and conditions that have led to Trump’s electoral victory, showing that the current rise of the right wing is a global phenomenon not specific to the US. Ramos offers us much needed and lucid context of how we must think strategically if we are to defeat this threat in the long haul. And yet with so much at stake, a photo essay and interview with Lara Kiswani by Brooke Anderson and Pete Woiwode illustrates just one example of powerful resistance when people mobilized by the thousands to the San Francisco Airport’s International Terminal to demand – and successfully achieve – the release of Muslim immigrants detained under Trump’s Muslim Ban.
We humbly offer this issue of The Abolitionist with the goal of providing a greater sense of understanding, analysis, and hope – especially in this seemingly grim and dangerous period. As always, repression breeds resistance, and it is the willingness of people to struggle, to fight back, in ways both big and small, that gives us the drive to continue fighting for a world without imprisonment, policing, surveillance, or oppression.