Lake Worth has long been a hotbed for civil disobedience and a mecca for activists, and this weekend some locals are helping organize a group of "womyn (transgender or cisgender), transgender men, and genderqueer & gender-variant people" (but no cisgendered men please!) from across the state who will converge at Fisheating Creek near Palmdale to offer support for one another... and then get to some rabble-rousin'.
The Facebook page for the Trans & Womyn's Action Camp states that participants will share "campaign information and direct action skills in a conscientious, supportive, empowering and encouraging environment for voices often marginalized."
The activists will kick things off today with a protest in St. Augustine against Ponce De Leon.
April 3 marks the 500th anniversary of De Leon's landing on the soil that eventually came to be considered St. Augustine. What followed after his landing was the killing and colonization of indigenous people and the building of thousands and thousands of strip malls. Yet state officials are celebrating him as part of the Viva 500 campaign promoting the state. The TWAC organizers say he should instead be posthumously prosecuted as a war criminal.
That will be followed by a mix of dance parties and workshops -- topics include tree-climbing trainings, plant walks, and sessions about modern-day eugenics, birth justice, the FAU "Owlcatraz" debacle, and much more. The camp was inspired by "Dine' women defending their native lands against destructive mining, to the eco-feminists defending forests from logging and developing; from the immigrant and trans women defending their lives from the prison industrial complex, to the parents and midwifes defending their bodies and babies from the patriarchal medical establishment."
"The radical environmental movement is a majority male-dominated space," says one organizer, Lake Worth-based Ana Rodriguez, so she's happy to help women feel empowered to lead. "It's also really important make space where the environmental movement has connection with social justice," she says. She added that they are expecting 50 to 100 people and there is no set fee but, rather, a suggested donation on a sliding scale.
It will all culminate in an "Action Day" on Monday April 8. About this, Rodriguez would not divulge many details, saying only that there were "a few local campaigns we've been needing help and support with" that are "social justice- or environmental justice-related" and that the issue they chose to tackle would be "not just a Florida issue but relevant nationwide or worldwide."
To meet some of the participants, check out the video above from their Indiegogo fundraising page. To register, see the TWAC website.