30th January, Denver USA.
received anonymously via email:
“In the Weelaunee Forest of Atlanta, Georgia, land defenders are living and grieving, protesting the clear-cutting and destruction of 280 acres of forest for the largest police training facility that the US will have seen yet. This proposed behemoth of a facility – dubbed “Cop City” – would sit on land that has seen hundreds of years of violence; against the Muscogee peoples, against people enslaved on plantations, and against those held at the prison farm that once stood there. In recent years hickory, oaks, and pines have been able to flourish, providing new homes for creatures and humans alike, as well as cooling the city of Atlanta in the process. On January 9th, 2023, Manuel “Tortuguita” Teran, a land defender, was murdered by a Georgia state trooper, continuing the violence committed against the people and land of Weelaunee. We must not witness this in silence.
In the wake of the murder of George Floyd, protests demanding police abolition have been met by claims from elected officials that more funding for training will lead to a decrease in the use of lethal force. This is outrageous, considering that 2022 was the deadliest year for police violence. Cop City will cost 90 million to complete, one third of which is funded by tax payers, and two thirds by a collection of businesses that includes Home Depot, Target, UPS, Wells Fargo, and Chick-fil-a. Preventing the funding of Cop City is essential to the wellbeing of Weelaunee Forest and all those affected by police violence. We all can, and must, refuse to let Cop City become reality in as many ways as possible.
On Monday January 30th, 2023, we took action against one of Denver’s key players in funding Cop City: a Wells Fargo in the Cherry Creek shopping district. Underneath a racist mural we shattered windows and spray painted the following messages:
“Stop Funding Cop City” “Rest in Peace Tortuguita”
Cop City is not the first project like this that Wells Fargo has funded, nor will it be the last. This is a call to action in response to their willful funding of projects that kill human beings, animals, and the Earth.
Tortuguita lost their life fighting Cop City. While we do not believe that damaging property is an equal or adequate response to Tortuguita’s murder, we do believe that action must be taken to honor Tortuguita, to stand in solidarity with the movement to defend Weelaunee Forest, and to hold these financial entities accountable for their crimes against humanity.
We act today in love and solidarity with those in Weelaunee Forest and land defenders that are in active struggle against state violence everyday. This action is meant to serve as a reminder that private extractive corporations from the United States are responsible for perpetuating extreme violence against people defending their ancestral homes. This is also a reminder that this violence is not bound by US colonial boarders. In this, we wish to acknowledge the murder of three land defenders in Honduras since the beginning of the year.
We must continue to grieve, we must continue to fight. Also – fuck that mural.”