Minnesota Uprising Arrestee Support
Minnesota Uprising Arrestee Support (MUAS) is an ad-hoc grouping of arrestees, their friends and comrades, community members, activists, and legal workers. Through activist legal support we strive to minimize push-back and repression by the state1 while continuing to build transformative power. We work to solidify the gains of the Minnesota uprising that followed the murder of George Floyd and the seemingly endless list of state-sanctioned executions of Black people throughout Minnesota.
We understand that police are just one part of a white supremacist power structure that also includes the courts, jails and prisons in which the rebels of the uprising are now trapped. These systems disproportionately ensnare marginalized people—poor and working-class communities and communities of color, especially—and they must be dismantled in tandem.
Resisting repression is key to building movements and making change. Repression chills movement activity by making the cost of taking action higher than we can afford. Pushing back against this repression widens the realm of possibility for confronting power. It also shows those most directly affected that we care about them, that we stand with them, and that we believe their freedom is worth fighting for. The unique character that this uprising took, and how the passion of those in the streets spread so far and so quickly, has led to all the systematic shifts that have started to hopefully take root. In this spirit we reject the “good protestor”/”bad protestor” narrative and we support all arrestees from the uprising, regardless of charge.
Because we are rooted in grassroots solidarity against white supremacy, we do not support anyone arrested while affirming white supremacist politics. We also refuse to support those who undermine our solidarity by cooperating with the state against fellow arrestees.
As we work to support those most negatively impacted during the uprising, we see that that does not stop at arrestees. We see that those who live in, work at, and rely on infrastructure that was destroyed during the uprising are still reeling. We also see the negative impact on people already at the margins, who may not have participated in the uprising but were nonetheless harassed or brutalized by police or the National Guard, or arrested for curfew violations. While our work focuses specifically on arrestee support, we commit to work in solidarity with those most directly affected neighbors and community members, by working with and amplifying various Mutual Aid2 initiatives that have sprung forth from the rubble.
We know that the systems that shape our lives are also shaped by us; culture is both learned and created. To create radical change, we must simultaneously transform ourselves and the way we treat each other. We humbly work to move away from a world built on scarcity, “security” by force, and punishment. Instead we choose to embrace a vision of abundance, security through resilience, and transformation.
1. When we say “state” we refer not to MN specifically but to the whole of the political community under and around the government, it’s bureaucracy, and institutions.
2. In organization theory, mutual aid is a voluntary reciprocal exchange of resources and services for mutual benefit. Operating under the non-hierarchical and egalitarian ethos of Solidarity not Charity.