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+3 votes
Would you define the activity as direct action?  How so?

I ask because of the ways I hear "direct action" used in regards to protest activities.  I do not want to know what The Red-Green Anarcho-Libertarian-Socialist Alliance Association decided on at their last consensus meeting; I want to know what people here might desire to achieve when they show up to such a protest, if they would actually appear for such an event.  What opportunities does the bloc create for people to act directly to address the actual problems that concern everyone, as opposed to just kicking in the faces of the folks in the big chairs?  Does the act of threatening physical violence count as confronting problems ourselves, or does it reinforce the notion of the authority that such leaders assert?

Feel free to substitute "G8 summit" with "UC Board of Regents" or whatever context you find appropriate for the sake of your answer.
by (950 points)
Do you, as an individual, differentiate "direct action" from "reaction?"
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1 Answer

+1 vote
You could call it direct action if the amount of destruction and disruption caused by the protests/riots leads to the summit being cancelled for security reasons. You could even call it direct action if people start rioting and looting corporate franchise stores - kind of a spontaneous, autonomous redistribution of resources, dig?

I personally reject the pacifist notion that all physical conflict reinforces authority - if anything, I would say that it reinforces authority to passively stand by while an authority assaults you (whether this takes the form of a cop with a baton, or a head of state with an entire nation's economic violence and military might at his feet).

There are also more subtle/indirect results that could arguably be called "direct action" but in any case aren't purely symbolic: providing visual evidence of resistance to capitalism (or authoritarianism, etc.) which, otherwise, might appear wholly unopposed; forging stronger bonds between anarchists working together in the streets; and building tactical and strategic skills that will be valuable for future resistance.
by (8.7k points)