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Forest Life

by Monkey

One issue that I feel is very central to the Fall Creek treesit is the issue of anarchism. Anarchy is something that doesn't get mentioned much when they write about us in the newspapers. There's a few reasons for this: 1)because it only indirectly pertains to saving trees, 2)because it is too complex an issue to reduce into sound bites, and, 3)because the mainstream press probably doesn't understand that we are making anarchy work.

So instead of waiting for journalism to come to figure out why its good to "smash the state," I'm going to say a few things about anarchy in the forest. Anarchism is the belief that society can be rearranged in such a way that authority and coercion no longer exist, or are minimalized. We need to lessen authority and coercion in order to live fulfilling, healthy lives.

One thing that sets many anarchists apart from other revolutionaries is the belief that the revolution is not a grand apocalyptic moment that we must wait for. The revolution exists in every moment of our lives. When I get up in the morning and spend my day deliberately doing things that please me, when I strive to live instead of merely existing, that is the revolution happening.

Because revolution exists in the present, not in some mythic possible future, it is crucial that anarchists establish autonomous communities and start figuring out how to live on our own terms now. Fall Creek is such a place. The tree village has no leaders, no bosses. No one is in charge, calling the shots everything we construct (treesits, road blockades) goes up as a result of the collective effort of many people. No one person has more of a say about what we should do than anyone else. Instead we all throw in our input, building on each other's ideas, making sure that everyone present agrees with decisions we make.(In case you were wondering we don't actually go through formal consensus process. Things in the woods are way too chaotic for that; and besides this is Red Cloud Thunder, not a Save the Redwoods Campaign!)

Having lived in the forest for a decent amount of time, I would like to say that our little anarchist community is a wonderful thing. Years ago I started exposing myself to anarchist ideas and, at the time, my main thoughts on the subject were, "Sounds great, but would it (anarchy) actually work in the real world." Now, having lived in a tree without authority or coercion, I feel I can safely say, "Yes, anarchy does work!"


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