BLACKOUT Collective’s 4R’s

Black Direct Action Frames

We view Black direct actions in 4 frames. We value these frames because it reminds us that there is a diversity of tactics. All 4 types of direct action are needed and valuable and have been used separately and collectively in the fight for liberation. 

Direct Action (working definition) – Direct Action is  a tactic used to make an immediate intervention that stops business as usual. The purpose is to cause a crisis of conscious or a crisis for the state, the elite, corporations, etc. It is transformational in nature for those using tactic. The tactic aims to transform both the practitioner, the material conditions, the oppressed/working classes relationship to power.  

  • Rapid Response –  an action that immediately responds to an injustice or intervenes to stop it.
    • Ex: Philando Castille and Alton Sterling actions, the initial protest in Ferguson 
  • Reform– Direct Action that put pressure on your decision maker to meet your demands, usually within a grassroots campaign. Meaning direct actions, with a  clear target, that fit within a larger strategy, carried out by members, stakeholders and allies.
    • Ex: Fight for 15 actions, actions with a demand for the mayor 
  • Rebellion– Direct actions that question the validity of the system by banging on it (because it’s a tuesday)
    • Ex:  Anarchist, Slave rebellions, Baltimore Uprising, LA Riots 
  • Resilience – An Action that directly confronts power and meets the direct needs of the community at the same time.
    • Ex: Quilombos in South American or land occupations or housing occupations