Subject: To further our discussion today, a copy of the Oak Lane Brigade Manifesto Date: Tue, 09 Apr 2002 19:55:36 -0400 (EDT) From: firstname.lastname@example.org Hi everyone: I received a copy of the manifesto on one of my listservs today. I thought it would be of interest to you given our discussion today. Interestingly enough, I did not see any threats of (future) violence mentioned in the manifesto. Cheers, Jean MANIFESTO OF THE OAK LANE BRIGADE On the eve of the annual Take Back The Night rally to bring to conscious view the ravages of rape and violence against womyn, members of the Oak Lane Brigade embarked on a campaign to take back the public spaces of Virginia Tech and put them in the service of the fight against patriarchy. Our chosen weapon: the spraypaint can. We have been forced to use this tactic because it is the only way anyone will listen, look and think. On a campus where one in four womyn are the targets of sexual violence--one weapon in patriarchy's arsenal against our entire species--complacency seems to be the name of the game. The administration has chosen to turn a blind eye to our cries for help--as it does for so many other problems here--so we instead choose the road of popular self-empowerment. By taking action, we are making it clear that our community will not continue to accept rape culture, misogyny and our obscene gender roles. Let this be our declaration that resistance to the violence of patriarchy will be met on equal ground--no silence, no passivity, no pleas; we will take action and we will take it now. This had to happen. As you pass by our public poetry, remember this: you are involved in this, one way or another. And our struggle is not isolated in some vacuum: a call for womyn's liberation is by necessity a call for the liberation of all. We understand that we are inexorably linked to the lives of those around us and we stand in solidarity particularly with the struggles of people of color and queers against their own oppressions. We call on you to question and refuse the role you have been assigned to play out in this system and we invite you to join us and develop your own means of resistance as befits your own needs. The Oak Lane Brigade is the moniker adopted by a group of individuals--please note, a group of womyn and men alike. Our name suggests a center of Greek life on Virginia Tech's campus--and we find that this aspect of University culture is one of the mainstay institutions behind patriarchy and violence against women. In doing so, we do not simply leave our analysis as a critique of Greek culture, but we name it as an icon of the larger rape culture that pervades the entire university system throughout the United States. We wish to close this with an apology to those of the (underpaid and mistreated) working class who will be forced to clean up oppression's mess.