Supporting veterans against the war
The most memorable show that Resist and Exist performed at was in 2013, when we shared the stage with
Kevin from March Forward in Los Angeles. March Forward is an organization comprised of veterans that
served in Iraq and Afghanistan who have since become activists against these wars and U.S. imperialism. It
was the first time a punk show had a former combat soldier on stage speaking up against the war. By this
example, we should support a group like March Forward or another group such as Veterans Against the War.
Veterans historically, that had chosen to oppose the war they participated in, have played a pivotal role in
anti-war activism. For example, during the 1960's their activities were on going, in particular by the Vietnam
vets who often opposed the war in Vietnam. They would come onto a stage and speak at anti-war rallies and
in between bands during concerts.
A few months prior the show in 2013, Kevin and Michael both from March Forward did an amazing workshop
at Anarcho Cafe, an activist/community space, for a non-music event organized by Resist and Exist. This was
an anarchist's event, and there is due respect to them for attending and participating as non-anarchists.
Their workshop entailed how to remove military recruits off of college campuses, to discuss the issue of
military suicides, PTSD and much more. You can read and watch a short video interview and full bio of them
on this web site: http://diyzine.com/anarcho2012.html
In the past, punk bands like Discharge had very strong statements against war and influenced many D-beat
bands with their message. However, I think it is important that the punk scene establishes a closer
relationship with the anti-war movement, because we are almost always in an exclusive circle. We need to
break it by networking with other groups and organizations, to expand our ideas and work together for
support of a better future.
If you would like to receive brochures about what is wrong and what damage military recruitment has on
communities and what plausible alternatives there are to joining the military, please check out this link -
*March Forward (Veterans & service members stand up against war and racism) http://www.marchforward.org/
*Iraq Veterans Against the War http://www.ivaw.org/
*War Resisters League (Resisting War at Home & War Abroad since 1923): https://www.warresisters.org/
*Veterans for Peace (Exposing the true costs of war & militarism since 1985) http://www.veteransforpeace.org/
Let's make gigs more radical!
I used to go to a lot of rallies, and I would always carry a pen and a paper to check out the speakers and
groups and take notes to get in contact later. I would invite the organizations to the punk shows Resist and
Exist performed in.
What can make a show educational and fun is to have speakers in between bands. Let's say the band does
a 30 minute set. 15 minutes you have instruments being broken down or set up, during this time a speaker
can go on. You may also have their organization table at the event or show, so the audience can choose to
go home with booklets and literature instead of empty handed. If you want to make the show even more
radical, show films, invite more speakers and groups to table at the event or show. And of course, you can
put the info. about the groups on the flyer and on the posters. We did this a lot with humanitarian and animal
rights groups in the past.
Flyers: You can list the bands, speakers and name of organizations that will table at the event. Don't flyer
just only at record stores or punk gigs. Get them distributed at college campuses, in the community, rallies,
Posters: Get sponsors. And whoever can sponsor the event, have their logo printed in a small size on the
poster. Talk to small business owners of cafes and coffee shops, and ask them if you can hang the poster on
In the past, we got sponsors from groups like: Anarchist Black Cross, Anti Racist Action, Animal Liberation
Press Office, etc. They would donate $50 each. By doing this sometimes the events ended up being free or
we would get glossy color stock flyers from http://www.nextdayflyers.com/ and not even spend a penny.
Also in the past, we got Headline Records, Profane Existence, and Go Kart Records to donate tons of free
merchandise. Normally we would print on the flyer that the first 30 people at the door gets a free CD, shirt,
pin, etc. By doing that people would come to the gig early and not miss the 1st opening band. Or, if it's a
benefit show, you can raffle them at the event to raise money for causes.
Food at the event: There were times that we would invite groups like Food Not Bombs to the gig and set up.
They would give out free veggie meals and have a donation can to collect funds at the event. This all
depends on if you're organizing an event at a hall, community center, or a club. Pretty much more often than
not, clubs will say no to this. If somehow it's a go, invite friends who makes vegan snacks and drinks and sell
them at gigs to help out their small diy business or raise money for a cause.
From-J.Lee / Resist and Exist