On April 17-18, 2015, TARN is sponsoring “The People's Anti-Racism Unconference,” a two-day event in Nashville, Tennessee. There is No Cost to Attend. The Unconference will offer workshops, presentations, lectures, panels, and exploration of the intersections of anti-racism and anti-oppression work in Tennessee and the South. We seek to dismantle the school-to-prison pipeline, overcriminalization, the concentration of police surveillance in communities of color, police killing of people of color, and other racist legislative priorities. We seek to facilitate a space where anti racism ideals can grow into action. Join the discussion as we take on the broken and misguided rationale of the racist groups that have flocked to Tennessee to wave their anti-Black and anti-Brown flags and inspire such dangerous legislation.
Tennessee Anti Racist Network and Allies will hold the free “The People's Anti Racism UnConference: We Can (re)Build It Ourselves - Intersectional Organizing & Activism in a World of Barriers,” to be held April 17 & 18, 2015 at the Morgan House on the campus of the First Unitarian Universalist Church in Nashville, Tenn. We are interested in your suggestions. Contact us for more details at firstname.lastname@example.org, and we will update the site as a more definitive schedule becomes available! Check out our Facebook event page too!
Why an “UnConference?”
We're interested in challenging social and cultural barriers between people and creating spaces that represent the full range of humanity and the diversity of our experiences. This means we're engaged in a process of identifying and dismantling ideologies, actions, dialogue, and processes that keep us separated. We have chosen the "unconference" format to demonstrate our commitment to the ideal of eliminating barriers like educational attainment, class, gender, race, and sexual orientation, between people and organizations, and in our work and events. We seek to engage more people from all walks of life to become engaged with activism, especially anti-racism and pro-diversity work, while connecting the dots between interrelated issues.
What will the UnConference look like?
Beginning Friday evening, you'll find all kinds of people sharing knowledge, information, ideas, and solidarity. People making new friends and important contacts. People learning new skills or refreshing old ones. Presenters sharing up-to-date information on a variety of organizing fronts. Workshops to help us explore issues like privilege; cross issue organizing tactics; activist art and music; and direct actions. Sessions will begin Friday evening, with dinner provided. Sessions will continue through Saturday. Opportunities to participate in direct actions will be offered, including an anchor event, the protest of American Renaissance at Montgomery Bell State Park. We hope more actions will spontaneously emerge.
First, Save The Date, April 17 & 18, 2015. Then, if you're interested, join our organizing team by sending an email to email@example.com. Start planning your session or workshop! If you have an idea for a session, or know someone who would be interested in leading a session, please let us know. Reach out to your networks, friends, and allies and firm up plans to attend. If you want to be added to our email list to receive UnConference updates, please send us your name and any organizational affiliation. If you're coming from out of town and need lodging, please let us know.
Tennessee is a Hate Tourist Mecca?! What in TAR-Nation! In December 2014 the Southern Poverty Law Center named Tennessee a “Hate Tourist Mecca” which may not be surprising in a state that has 29 recognized hate groups, some of whom hold very public recruiting events, and where State Legislators advance the racist agenda of these groups through speaking engagements and calls to establish an "NAAWP ." Racism and systemic white supremacy are alive and thriving in Tennessee, but the Tennessee Anti Racist Network (TARN) is pushing back!
We think that racism is a community issue and anti-racism is a community responsibility. Therefore, we hope to bring academics, researchers, and practitioners together with organizers and activists to educate Tennesseans about racist policies and racist hate groups--along with what we can do about building a more just and equitable world. Our anti-racism community encompasses Tennessee and beyond. We need your help to make the unConference a reality. Please support our work with a small donation.
When you make a donation to the Unconference, you will have the satisfaction that your dollars are working for racial justice in Tennessee! TARN is an unincorporated, all-volunteer association of everyday people and organizations. The Unconference is fiscally sponsored by the Peaceroots Alliance. All donations will be reported to Peaceroots to ensure the highest level of accountability and stewardship of your money. (Peaceroots is a tax-exempt, 501(c)(3) organization and permits us to solicit from the public with their ongoing supervision). We will provide an accounting of donations and expenses at the conclusion of the Unconference. Please contact us with questions or concerns.
Tennessee needs more grassroots, anti-oppression education opportunities! By "grassroots education," we mean learning opportunities that are not sponsored by universities or colleges, but whose content is academically informed, reflective, accessible, and empowering to marginalized communities and people. We value experiential knowledge. You are encouraged to contact TARN regarding opportunities to share your knowledge, work, and ideas at anti-racism educational events.
It is crucial that activists, community organizers, and social justice organizations develop critical analysis of internal and external processes that replicate systemic oppressions. The Unconference will create a space where these issues can be explored in a supportive environment, and strategies developed to implement anti-oppression action in grassroots, nonprofit, and faith-based communities.
Over the past couple years, TARN has initiated several actions, including a previous anti-racist conference. We're learning a lot about what it takes to maintain forward momentum in the face of seemingly unmovable institutions and traditions that reinforce racial inequality, and replicate white supremacy. Our legal system, our hospitals, our churches, our schools and homes – yes, even our social justice organizations, – are negatively affected by continued racial inequities and other oppressions. White supremacy really is everywhere in Tennessee--just as it's found everywhere in the country. But TARN is hopeful about the future of racial justice and anti oppression work in our state because we have met so many everyday Tennesseans who are interested in promoting racial justice, and who do not want to replicate white supremacy. Too many people in Tennessee lack access to anti-oppression education. In the future, TARN hopes to be able to deliver this type of grassroots education in small towns, rural communities, and environments that have traditionally made conversations about race very difficult and access to anti-oppression education nearly nonexistent.
Can you help us reach our goal? Thank you so very much. Love and Solidarity. Together We Win!