Charlottesville: Solidarity Forever

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Heather Heyer Way & Market Street, Charlottesville, VA.

If you are reading this, we trust that you already know what happened in Charlottesville, VA. on August 12, 2017.  Maybe you were one of the thousands of people that responded to the white supremacist terror attack that day that killed Heather Heyer and severely injured 30 others by donating to one of the many crowdfunders that sprang up in the aftermath in support of the survivors.  Maybe you attended the all-star benefit concert to support them.  In the two years since that terrible day, maybe you’ve wondered what happened to all that money and how the survivors are doing now.

Star could fill you in on all of that.  She was one of the people severely injured by James Fields Jr. in the attack, which left her with broken legs, a broken spine, and and other injuries so severe that she nearly lost a foot, has undergone five separate surgeries, and has been fighting to walk normally again for the last two years.

Some of the money never made it to any of the survivors, or was delayed for months and months thanks to well-meaning but inept/inexperienced organizers, pointless bureaucracy, and other problems.  The $200,000 raised by the DSA probably being the most infamous case of this.

The money raised that actually reached the survivors was quickly eaten up by the massive hospital bills incurred by the 30 injured survivors.  A fund set up specifically to pay the living costs of people whose injuries stopped them from going to work, is going to run out of money very soon.

This leaves the still-injured survivors in dire straits.  One can’t afford the operation required to fix their back so she can work & support their kids again.  Star is still facing additional surgery and is in dire financial straits because of all the limitations of her injuries.

This isn’t how we should be leaving the people who stood up to the most violent fascist gathering in modern US history and were badly, badly injured doing so.  Every single person opposed to fascism and bigotry owes a debt to these survivors and it’s high time to pay that debt by making sure they’re taken care of.  This is what anti-fascist solidarity means; this is why we established The International Anti-Fascist Defence Fund in the first place;  this is why we’ve supported Charlottesville survivors in the past; and this is why we didn’t hesitate to support Star now.

Donate to Star’s crowdfunder here.
Donate to The International Anti-Fascist Defence Fund here.

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August 25, 2018: Charlottesville survivor Aubtin Heydari visits the site of the attack two weeks later, after leaving the hospital.

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Good News For A Change.

 

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The call went out & the court was packed!

 

Sometimes we feel like all we do here at The International Anti-Fascist Defence Fund is tell y’all about terrible things happening to antifa and awful situations they find themselves in that we need to come together to help them get through.  But we don’t do enough to let you know what happens after or about the small victories we help make happen for the anti-fascists we support.  So here’s two recent stories for you:

You’ll recall back in June we helped out two antifascist moms being harassed by the FBI and local nazis for warning their neighbors about local racist extremists.  The feds pulled every trick in the book to make the two moms crack without any luck, including putting them up on bullshit charges.

Well, last Thursday was their preliminary hearing and antifa packed the courthouse to show support and be there to witness the judge throwing out all the charges!  We’re ecstatic that we were able to help them pay for the legal defense team they needed to make this happen!  The cops, on the other hand, have now threatened to indict the moms directly/press more charges, but given how incompetent they were at laying charges so far, that’s probably going to be a losing strategy/waste of taxpayer dollars.  The moms are still looking for help w/ legal costs and moving costs (since the FBI made good on their threat of giving their home addresses to local nazis!), so if you can help out, please do so here.

Over in Europe, Oleg – the Russian antifascist that was forced to seek asylum in another country – told us that thanks to our help with application fees, his wife and child will be leaving Russia to join him in his new home later this month!  Oleg writes:

Thank you very much for your help, support and solidarity, I am sincerely grateful to you for what you have done for me and my family.
We did the necessary documents for family reunification in St. Petersburg. In the coming days, my wife goes to the embassy in St. Petersburg and will apply for a tourist visa.  If everything is fine and she receives visas and is able to come, then we will immediately submit the documents for family reunification to the migration service. then we will need to pass through several interviews in the migration service where the officers will sort out our family relationships. It may take up to six months. I hope everything will be OK.
I am very grateful for your help, thank you very much.

We are very happy to have played a part in making that family reunion possible.

If you have donated to the Defence Fund, please know that you were part of both of these stories; if you haven’t donated to the Defence Fund yet, make sure you do now so you can be part of the future happy endings we help create for anti-fascists!