Climate Justice Committee – Minnesota in Atlanta for stop Cop City action
Atlanta, GA – On November 13, five Climate Justice Committee – Minnesota (CJC) members joined activists from around the country to oppose the building of an urban warfare training facility for police on the Weelaunee Forest on the edge of Atlanta, Georgia.
Organizers of the Stop Cop City rally talked about the importance of connecting the environmental movement with the fight against police brutality, reminding those at the rally that earlier this year Atlanta police killed a protester trying to defend the forest – Manuel Terán, known to those in the movement as Tortuguita. Organizers also emphasized that police always defend polluters and those that destroy the environment.
Within the last year, 61 people – the majority from outside Georgia – have been hit with RICO charges, and over 40 of those individuals have domestic terrorism charges, all because of their organizing against Cop City.
Hundreds of people came to the opening rally to oppose and try to shut down the project. “We came to show support and to be able to bring the struggle back to Minneapolis about how we can support what's happening on the ground in Atlanta,” said CJ McCormick. “We need to have a diversity of tactics,” explained Kamau Franklin, a local Atlanta organizer at the rally. Tortugita’s mother, Belkis Terán, who attended with her husband, addressed the march telling people she was so happy to see everyone there opposing Cop City and defending the forest.
Over 110,000 Atlantans have signed a petition opposing the Cop City project. Shamefully, the city not only publicly released all the names of those who signed, but also opposed the referendum, pushing it to the courts and holding up the ability for Atlantans to vote on it during recent elections.
City officials report that Cop City is 40% built, no doubt to deflate further action. The CJC continues to join Atlantans to build the fight to Stop Cop City. The CJC also plans to continue support for activists facing state repression and connect Cop City to struggles for environmental justice and police accountability around the country.