The following post is the second in a series using archival documents from Cole Dorsey, a longtime activist/organizer in Grand Rapids and the Bay Area in California.
Below is a page from one of the many zines created by the Revolutionary Anarchist Youth (RAY), an anarchist group in Grand Rapids that existed in the mid-1990s.
There was a punk benefit show in the fall of 1996 to raise money for the US political prisoner known as Geronimo Pratt. Geronimo Pratt was a member of the Black Panther Party for Self Defense, who was a target of the FBI’s counter-intelligence program known as COINTELPRO. Pratt spent 27 years in prison for being part of the Black Freedom Struggle. He was eventually released in 1997.
Raising money at benefit shows has always been a major tactic of anarchists, both as a way of raising awareness about political repression around the world, but also as a mechanism to provide Mutual Aid for political prisoners.
In addition, these events were always a great opportunity to talk about local organizing, as is reflected in the page 24 from the RAY zine here below.