Stop I-69


DC Students for a Democratic Society & Potomac Earth First! Funk I-69
July 31, 2008, 7:19 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

Resistance to the construction of Interstate 69 continued nationally on Monday as nearly 100 people took over K Street in Washington, D.C. to demonstrate their opposition to NAFTA & I-69. SDSers, Potomac EF!ers, and others danced in the streets, handed out hundreds of fliers and stickers about I-69, and held corporations publicly accountable for their complicity in I-69 and the Plan Puebla Panama. Distracting the police with their funky dance moves, the crowd was able to storm the Cato Institute, a right-wing think tank responsible for forcing neoliberal ideology down the throats of communities across the world, and left their pristine glass doors plastered with anti-I-69 stickers.

The rowdy crowd continued to the offices of HNTB, a planning firm responsible for I-69, but were limited to blocking traffic and chanting by the line of riot police protecting their corporate bosses. The group finally danced its way down to the Washington Post, holding the corporate apologist responsible for uncritically supporting neoliberal policies and free trade agreements throughout the Americas. Once again, the crowd was almost obtained entrance to the offices, distracting those inside and disrupting work, but were forced down the stairs by a line of riot police.

The action forced hundreds of people to stop in their tracks (literally, as traffic was stopped by a dancing reclamation of the streets), open their eyes, and learn about Interstate 69. It also served as a reminder to those responsible for Interstate 69: we know where you are, we will continue to visit you wherever you hide, and all that protects you are thin glass doors and a line of riot police. Capitalism may be globalized, but so is resistance.



I-69 Protestors Shut Down Asphalt Yard Again!
July 15, 2008, 2:51 am
Filed under: Uncategorized

***URGENT UPDATE***

Fifteen I-69 opponents were arrested Monday morning blocking the entrance to Gohmann Asphalt, and need your support and solidarity. Many of them are being held on trumped up felony charges, and some of the female-bodied arrestees have been put in exceedingly unsafe situations. We are doing our best to make sure everyone is safe and get everyone out, but we need dollars like whoa. Any little bit helps!

or to the I69 Legal Office, 323 S Walnut, Bloomington, Indiana, 47401

People who have been calling the jail constantly and demanding humane treatment of the arrestees have done a great service, but at this point stopping those calls would make the job of the legal support team significantly easier as we try to keep lines of communication open between us, the arrestees, and the jail/D.A.’s office. THANKS!

****

This morning, over 20 citizens opposed to the construction of Interstate 69 shut down work at the Haubstadt Asphalt Yard belonging to Gohmann Asphalt & Construction, Inc. Five of the opponents locked themselves together in a circle at the yard’s gate, accompanied by five others dedicated to keeping them as comfortable as possible in the face of summer heat and the threat of police violence. With construction slated to begin this week, opponents are demanding that Gohmann immediately drop their contract for work on I-69. Additionally they demand that Gohmann and their accomplices, Riverton Trucking, Inc., drop a spurious civil suit brought against the only I-69 opponent arrested at a previous lock-down at Gohmann Asphalt’s Haubstadt facility.

Gohmann A&C is the primary contractor with the Indiana Department of Transportation for the construction of the first 1.77 miles of Section 1 of the proposed highway from Evansville to Indianapolis. Several weeks prior, five opponents chained themselves to a truck leaving Haubstadt Asphalt Yard belonging to Gohmann Asphalt & Construction, Inc.. The five—accompanied by twenty-five supporters—demanded that Gohmann drop their contract with INDOT or face continued opposition and work stoppages. Until Gohmann drops its contract, opponents will continue to hold them accountable for the evictions of farmers, the disruption of communities, and the devastation of the environment caused by I-69.

I-69 has been hotly contested for almost two decades, with voices raised against its part in the destruction of the environment, the economic prosperity of Southern Indiana communities, and the violation of Hoosiers’ property rights. Although over 70% of Indiana residents are opposed to the road, the governor and corporate interests are ramming I-69 down the throats of Southern Indiana residents in a complete subversion of the democratic process.

Over 400 families will be displaced in Southern Indiana; thousands of acres of farmland, wetlands, and wildlife refuge will be paved over; and the already-polluted tri-state area will face thousands of pounds of increased daily emissions from the increased truck traffic through the region. The interstate is ultimately intended to stretch from Canada to Mexico, linking up with an extensive network of roads being constructed there. The highway is a physical manifestation of NAFTA and other free trade agreements throughout the Americas—the same free trade agreements that have cost 31,000 jobs in Indiana alone since their beginnings in 1994.

“This road is being billed as an economic stimulus for Southern Indiana, but in fact it will only bring minimum wage jobs at truck stops and fast food joints. Meanwhile, all the other jobs are shipped to sweatshops further and further south of the border. The people of Indiana deserve better,” said Judith Mayland, a protestor at the site.

Various citizens’ groups have opposed I-69 for two decades, but with construction starting this week, opponents are stepping up the resistance in order to ensure that the will of the people is enacted.

“We’ve written letters, attended public meetings, and voted, and despite massive opposition they’re still trying to build this road,” one of the locked-down opponents said. “They haven’t listened and they haven’t listened. Now it’s time to lay our bodies on the line so that they finally get it that when we say ‘No road!’ we mean ‘No f***king road!’”



I-69 opponent hit with repression in SLAPP lawsuit after lockdown arrest: Support needed!
July 13, 2008, 7:52 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

    As construction on the highly contested NAFTA superhighway looms closer in
Southern Indiana, police presence and harassment against anti I-69
organizers is rapidly on the rise.   Now Gohmann Asphalt and Construction,
Inc. seem to be trying their hand at repressing resistance by suing an
activist for damages in response to a lockdown at an Asphalt yard in
Haubstadt, Indiana.  On June 25th, a truck leaving a Gohmann Asphalt
facility had the air let out of it’s tires, blockading access to the
plant, while 5 people locked down to the truck.    On July 10th, the only
arrestee from this lockdown was summoned to a deposition in order for
Gohmann to obtain the names and addresses of the other parties involved in
the lockdown.  This Strategic Lawsuit Against Public Participation (SLAPP)
is clearly Gohmann’s attempt at scaring activists into dropping actions
against their company, despite their bogus claims that they suffered
damages that may exceed $16,000.  This is not the only time Gohmann has
compromised integrity for profit.  In 2007 they settled an $8.2 million
lawsuit for providing fraudulent asphalt density samples in inspections to
increase profits while undermining the safety of the roads.  Gohmann is
getting rich off the destruction of land and communities, and is making
$25 million off the first 1.77 miles of I-69.  For them this petty lawsuit
isn’t about money, it’s about repressing opponents to the highway. Yet as
Gohmann and the state organize to intimidate us we only grow stronger.
    The only arrestee still hasn’t found a lawyer and doesn’t have the funds
to obtain one.  Help with legal funds and advice/referrals from lawyers
experienced in SLAPP suits is needed. People in Indiana are not letting
heightened repression in the interest of capital sway efforts to stop this
highway! This week is groundbreaking on the highway so come to
Indiana and join us in fighting the NAFTA superhighway!



New Flyers Up As Groundbreaking Draws Near!
July 13, 2008, 3:36 am
Filed under: Uncategorized

The Indiana Department of Transportation is having a secret groundbreaking ceremony for I-69 this week. If you’re reading this, you’re probably not invited. The I-69 Listening Project and Roadblock Earth First! are putting on a counter-party to speak against the construction of this highway and work towards the construction of community. Landowers and activists will speak about how and why the construction of I-69 will be so destructive and about the seventeen-year-old campaign against this road. Come listen, learn, and spend time with us! We’ll set up a barbeque and bring a selection of side dishes and dessert. Bring food to throw on the grill and to share!

Logistical info: July 20, 2008, 3 pm, at Werth Park on SR-64, just west of SR-57 near Oakland City.

Also July 28 is the National Day of Mobilization against I-69. There are lots of corporations involved with its construction, and they have offices all over the place. See “Those Responsible” to find a list of the culpable parties.

There are now beautiful flyers for both of these events up on the Resources page, under the flyers section!!



I-69 Media Office Launches New Website
July 4, 2008, 7:12 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

****Information from the I-69 Media Office****

The I-69 Media Office, an independent clearinghouse for anti-I-69 information and action reporting, has launched its new website. http://i69mediaoffice.wordpress.com. The website includes a wealth of information for affinity groups doing anti I-69 actions, including annotated lists of both corporate and independent media contacts in the region of southern Indiana. Check out the “about us” to see what sort of help we can offer affinity groups doing media work around the I-69 campaign. The website is still under construcion, and more information, such as how-to guides and sample press releases, will be up soon. Write i69media@yahoo.com if you have any question or suggestions.



Upcoming Anti-I69 Events in Evansville
July 4, 2008, 2:29 am
Filed under: Uncategorized

Along with ongoing direct resistance to construction, I-69 opponents in Evansville are putting on a series of public workshops, meetings, and presentations over the next two weeks in order to share skills, build more ties, and protect and strengthen our communities.

Saturday July 5 @ ASC Infoshop 7 – 8 PM Herbal Medicinals Workshop

John will present easy herbal remedies, with a focus on emergency medical care.

Sunday July 6 @ Willard Library Conference Room (Upstairs) 3 – 5 PM, Anti-I69 Community Support Meeting

Folks involved with logistical organizing (food, supplies, legal support, etc.) will meet to check in about what needs doing to support the summer campaign against I-69.

Wednesday July 9 @ ASC Infoshop 7 – 9 PM Conflict Mediation

Tiga will present means and methods of de-escalating and mediation social conflict, both between you and others or as a third party to the conflict. The focus will be on identifying boundaries and creating resolutions satisfactory to all involved. Tiga will not tell you how to make other people stop being a problem in your life.


Thursday July 10 @ ASC Infoshop 7 – 9 PM Know Your Rights

Guy will share basic know-your-rights and civil liberities information, as well as resources for responding to police harassment. Police can be intimidating, but if you know your rights, you can protect yourself and others from illegal questioning, search, and seizure. Asserting your rights can additionally protect you in court, as evidence obtained illegally can be thrown out.

Saturday July 12 @ Sunset Park (past the Pavilion Area) 4 – 6 PM Radical Consent: Fuck me! or Fuck no!

Tiga will give a basic workshop on the ideas of radical consent. If you have ever been uncertain as to whether your partner actually wanted you to do something, or if you have ever been afraid to tell a partner you didn’t really want to go any further, come to this workshop. Find out how to have better communication and better sex, feel safer, and help your partner feel respected!

Monday July 14 @ Willard Library Conference Room 6 – 8 PM I-69 Awareness Presentation by the I-69 Listening Project

Come see a presentation on what I-69 is for, its effect on local and Latin American American communities, its relation to NAFTA, and the 20-year history of resistance to it. There will be a powerpoint and possibly a panel of folks directly affected.

Willard Library is located on 1st Ave, just north of the Lloyd Expwy.
ASC Infoshop is located at 600B SE 2nd St, 2nd door on the back staircase.
Sunset Park is located at Riverside Dr. and Shawnee