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Introduction to Issue 1, Movimientos de Mujeres Zine

"First White Settlers in Ithaca were Revolutionary Soldiers," inscription on historical marker at DeWitt Park in Ithaca, NY.The editors think the red paint through the monument was painted some time in Summer 2020; it is unknown who painted it, but it is powerful.

July 17, 2020

Versión en español;

It’s not an exaggeration to say that uncertainty about this new COVID-19 virus hit us all with a flood of emotions and trepidation over what to do, back in mid-March. We were a group of eleven community members and activists (mostly from Central New York) who had arrived to Austin, TX, and then Piedras Negras, Coahuila, on a solidarity delegation, to learn about (and from) the women maquiladora workers in the Comité Fronterizo de Obrer@s, CFO (Border Committee of Women Workers).

We had gone there to witness women-led labor and community organizing, and to see how we could do solidarity in a way that deepens the connections across borders, and draws broader awareness to the oppressions facing women in the region, many from the hands of foreign and national corporate managers and owners of the assembly plants in which they work. Our objective was also to highlight the focus on alternatives, and women’s struggle to create change ‘from below’. As Maria Elena Martinez notes in her article in this issue, the women endure many abuses in the workplace and at home, and yet they persevere and organize, even as their rights are being curtailed even more during COVID-19 times. On June 8th, labor activist and lawyer Susana Prieto Terrazas was detained and then jailed for having denounced U.S. government and corporate pressures to reopen maquiladoras. She was released on July 1st, but under strict orders from the Mexican magistrate to stop her activism and restrict her mobility in the region.

Little did we know back in March that the topics of disparities, discrimination, abuse, and cooperative action would become central in organizing spaces and the media on both sides of the border over the next few months. We struggled with needing to cross the border back into the U.S., fully aware this was a privileged decision that was not extended to thousands of people fleeing violence and poverty, and knocking at the door for a chance to plead their asylum claims. COVID-19 virus has intensely affected people around the world, and we are also beginning to see many forms of resistance also intensify, including struggles for rights, for radical feminism, defense of territory and sovereignty, for racial justice from the grassroots. Those with lived experiences of having faced (and still facing) racism, misogyny, sexism, gender and many other forms of discrimination all their lives are demanding to be visible and to be heard. Ithaca has its own alternative statements from protest movements against historical oppression and colonialism (see picture).

We see hope for transformation in these fights led by women, by transgender people, by youth; we sense that their strength will shine through and show the rest of us ways to reject neoliberal forms of individualism, and embrace new ideas, new solidarities, and engage in novel conversations beyond the mainstream choices that have bound so many people around the world to heavy militarized policing and brutal state-sponsored murders, exploited labor, sexualized forms of violence, and mass incarceration, global policies enforced by  the power dynamics of patriarchy, monopoly capitalism and imperialism.

With this issue, we hope to contribute toward broadening the framework of what is possible. The works included here bring attention in one way or another to both how things are shaping up with respect to resistances to repression, extractivism, environmental damage, human rights violations, displacements, and occupation. We also hope to contribute to conversations and collective action and to deepen and expand our circles of solidarity and social justice to imagine and demand fundamental changes. We hope you enjoy our first zine and look forward to your comments, discussions, and sharing your own visions and experiences of resistance.

We hope you join our launch party on August 16, 7pm EST! Here:

Movimiento de Mujeres editorial collective TABLE OF CONTENTS: CONTENIDO

1. Introduction to issue one of the Movimientos de Mujeres Zine

2. Salvadoran protests and prophets// HILARY GOODFRIEND; originally published in Spanish in O Istmo (June 2020)


4. Colombian social leaders, COVID-19 and U.S. Empire// Patricia Rodríguez, Movimientos de Mujeres

5. Back of the Bus and For Martin L king poetry by Carolyn Gregory

6. Bailouts are class warfare; by Justin Akers Chacón · originally published in March 2020

7. Reflexión sobre la violencia doméstica y laboral que viven las mujeres trabajadoras de las maquiladoras en la zona fronteriza de Coahuila// Maria Elena Martinez, M.Sc. Psicología; Sacramento, California

8. Border Crossings// Michael Mulvey

9. Crime scene // Kiel Blickley

10. Women and the Prison Industrial Complex// Brooke Kato 

11. Podcast/Media links:

A. Interview/Podcast Ruthie Aroyo (by Enrique Gonzalez-Conty)

B. Colombia video: by Movimiento de Mujeres por la Vida de Cajibío Cauca-Reflexiones desde el Territorio Campesino Agroalimentario de Cajibío, Cauca

C. Video conversa con Sr. Roberto Jimenez, Abogado de Derechos Laborales, Piedras Negras, Coahuila, sobre la reforma de la Ley Laboral en Mexico

D. Video conversa con Profa. Josefina Sanchez Ponce, Piedras Negras, Coahuila, sobre el impacto ambiental de proyectos extractivos

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