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Solidarity with the AETA 4

Solidarity with the AETA 4, National Day of Solidarity with Scott DeMuth, Conspiracy Tour
Saturday, July 17 2010 @ 05:17 PM UTC
Contributed by: Anonymous

Adriana Stumpo, Maryam Khjavi, Nathan Pope, and Joseph Buddenberg were charged under the Animal Enterprise Terrorism Act (AETA) for mobilizing support of animal rights and for expressing their opposition to animal experimentation through sidewalk chalking, chanting, distributing flyers, attending public protests, and the alleged use of “the Internet to find information on bio-medical researchers.” In this update:

1. Solidarity with the AETA 4
2. July 23: Potluck in the Park for the National Day of Solidarity for Scott DeMuth
3: July 25-August 26: Conspiracy Tour
4. August 23: Pre-trial Hearing in Davenport, IA
5. Legal Costs Rising...Can You Spare a Buck?

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1. Solidarity with the AETA 4

We write in solidarity with the AETA 4 on their victory in a San Jose federal court on July 12, 2010. The Judge dismissed the case because the state failed to explain exactly what the defendants allegedly did and how it amounted to a violation of law.

Adriana Stumpo, Maryam Khjavi, Nathan Pope, and Joseph Buddenberg were charged under the Animal Enterprise Terrorism Act (AETA) for mobilizing support of animal rights and for expressing their opposition to animal experimentation through sidewalk chalking, chanting, distributing flyers, attending public protests, and the alleged use of “the Internet to find information on bio-medical researchers.” In other words, they were charged under a terrorism law for activities that are protected under the U.S. Constitution. Judge Ronald Whyte’s dismissal of the case was the only legally sensible decision. And while this is certainly a moment to celebrate, Judge Whyte made it clear that the state could still re-file charges at a later date, so we move forward with cautious optimism.

Meanwhile, the only other AETA case still in formal litigation concerns Scott DeMuth, a Minneapolis-based anarchist, graduate student, and Dakota language student charged with conspiracy under that law. The state claims DeMuth is linked to Animal Liberation Front (ALF) actions in Iowa and Minnesota in 2004 and 2006. Thus far, the “evidence” offered up against DeMuth amounts to the prosecution’s view that his “writings, literature, and conduct suggest that he is an anarchist and associated with the ALF movement. Therefore, he is a domestic terrorist.” That’s right: Scott’s ideas, his constitutionally protected political activities (such as volunteering with an eco-political prisoner support group in the Twin Cities), and his alleged affiliations are enough to brand him a “terrorist.”

Both the AETA 4 and DeMuth cases demonstrate that, all too often, the government seeks to criminalize and persecute activists whether they work above or below ground, and regardless of evidence of any illegal activity. Therefore, these cases are about much more than animal rights and animal enterprises. In fact, the message from the Animal Enterprise Terrorism Act and its supporters is for every one of us: if you express opposition to any powerful institution in this country, you may become a target of government repression and be labeled a terrorist. Since around half of all USAmericans object to animal experimentation and since the public’s trust in government is presently at an historic low, it would seem that we have an opportunity to build massive popular support for abolishing the AETA and for strengthening freedom movements everywhere. Let’s get to work.


2. July 23: Potluck in the Park for the National Day of Solidarity for Scott DeMuth

The National Day of Solidarity for Scott is only days away! If you’re in Minneapolis, join us for food, fun, and good company! And don’t miss the official Conspiracy Tour kickoff event! Be among the first to join the Conspiracy!

Featuring:
- "Conspiracy: the Musical," a puppet show extravaganza
- Music by our friend Heidi Barton Stink (http://www.myspace.com/bartonstink)
- Pre-Tour Discussion and Potluck

* When: Friday, July 23rd, 5-7:30pm for food and games
* Where: Powderhorn Park (near the stage), Minneapolis

If you’re able, please bring a dish to share. We’ll make sure to have some vegan, vegetarian, and gluten-free options available, but bring what you need with some to spare if you can. Donations are appreciated for Scott’s legal defense fund.

Not in Minneapolis? There's still time to arrange a solidarity event for Scott in your town! Grab some friends, do something fun, spread the word about Scott's case, and contribute to creating a strong culture of resistance and solidarity across the nation!


3: July 25-August 26: Conspiracy Tour

The Conspiracy Tour will be hitting the road a couple days after the National Day of Solidarity for Scott. Have you seen the awesome promo video yet? It's certain to have the feds shifting uncomfortably in their britches all summer.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xB5LjnUD7oA

Go to http://conspiracytour.wordpress.com to find out when the tour’s coming to you!


4. August 23: Pre-trial Hearing in Davenport, IA

Mark your calendars! Scott's final pre-trial date before trial in September is on Monday, August 23rd. Late August is a lovely time to visit the Quad Cities and check out the quaint federal courthouse in Davenport. You'll be sure to be met by friends from all over, including folks on the Conspiracy Tour, who will be making a mad dash from the West Coast to plop their butts down in the courtroom for a day. Start planning your Quad Cities vacation today--and invite your friends!

We'll keep you updated on the details of the pre-trial hearing as we get them.


5. Legal Costs Rising...Can You Spare a Buck?

We almost made it through the announcement without begging for money, but couldn't quite do it. In the last couple months before trial, we're pushing hard to raise funds to help pay for Scott's legal defense expenses. This is no small feat, as good legal defense costs a lot and Scott's lawyers are pouring tons of time and energy into helping him fight back against state repression.

If you find a few dollars burning a hole in your pocket, we'd be happy to take them off your hands! You can donate online by visiting http://davenportgrandjury.wordpress.com or you can send a check or money order made out to Coldsnap Legal Collective with "EWOK!" in the memo line to:

SCSC c/o Coldsnap Legal Collective
P.O. Box 50514
Minneapolis, MN 55405

Much love & solidarity,

the Scott & Carrie Support Committee (SCSC)



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