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News :: Human Rights : Organizing
Brookline High School Students Repudiate Columbus Day
10 Oct 2006
Brookline, Mass – The Tribal Community Alliance, a student organization at Brookline High School that works on raising awareness about indigenous rights, brought friends and supporters together to protest the Columbus Day holiday. Standing on Coolidge Corner with banners that read “Stop Celebrating Genocide” and “Support Indigenous People Day”, the protesters confronted what they say is a wrong account of history.
Photos of Brookline High Columbus Protest
“I think 99% of what people think of Columbus is wrong,” said Emily McLaughlin, 16, a Brookline High School student. “He did not have great relations with Native Americans and he was definitely not a hero. He shouldn’t be celebrated.”

Emily herself became active in the Tribal Community Alliance when one of her best friends, Alicia Mucha, 16, found out about a year ago that she is part Native American. Alicia was raised as being half white, but in reality her father is black and her mother is African American, Cherokee, and Mohawk. The two friends began asking questions and became very interested in Native American struggles, culture, and history; things that they weren’t taught in school.

“I want for people to realize that where they live is where people were murdered, were raped, where families were torn apart. They don’t see that genocide happened right here. They think that it only happened in other countries,” said Alicia, now one of the lead organizers of Tribal Community Alliance. She said she tries very hard not to get upset during History class and to counteract common misconceptions that her classmates have about indigenous people’s struggles.

“Just raising people’s awareness is important because a lot of people don’t know. I was shocked to learn that I am living in a country that was basically founded on genocide,” said Emily, “In elementary school they teach you so many lies. It’s ridiculous. They tell you that the pilgrims were nice people and never hurt anyone, and sometimes they even portray Native Americans as being the enemy.”

Although many bystanders did not understand the students’ point of view, others fully supported their cause. “Columbus was a butcher and a slave trader,” said Vion Decew, 46, from Newton. “He came here for profit and he was not the first person here. People have been coming here since the Phoenicians. They have been coming here for thousands of years, so he wasn’t a great discoverer.”

She and her husband make an effort to tell their kids what they haven’t been taught in school, about how tens of millions of indigenous people died after the arrival of the Portuguese, Spanish, and English invaders. She explained that in New Mexico, where much of her family is from, it is more common knowledge that Columbus is not a heroic figure. “In general, history’s written by the people who won and who are still around. History is owned by the people in power,” she said.

“I was kind of brought up like everybody else. I had the vision of Thanksgiving and Columbus Day,” said Alicia. “I was comfortable with my ignorance, but now I’m so happy that I know. That I don’t have a wool wrapped around my eyes anymore.”

Alicia's view was influenced by reading books like "American Holocaust" and Howard Zinn’s "A People’s History of the United States" which helped her to come to terms with the history and suffering of her own people. An excerpt from Zinn’s book reads: “Now, from his base on Haiti, Columbus sent expedition after expedition into the interior. They found no gold fields, but had to fill up the ships returning to Spain with some kind of dividend. In the year 1495, they went on a great slave raid, rounded up fifteen hundred Arawak men, women, and children, put them in pens guarded by Spaniards and dogs, then picked the five hundred best specimens to load onto ships. Of those five hundred, two hundred died en route. The rest arrived alive in Spain and were put up for sale by the archdeacon of the town, who reported that, although the slaves were ‘naked as the day they were born,’ they showed ‘no more embarrassment than animals.’ Columbus later wrote: ‘Let us in the name of the Holy Trinity go on sending all the slaves that can be sold.’”

Rytu Singh, 19, from India was impressed by the Brookline High students presence and agreed that imperial powers often try to rewrite history as the British attempted in her own country. She said that much of the Indian history, which was mostly based on oral tradition, was lost because of the British occupation of India from 1773 to 1947 and British-run schools. “My cousins go to schools where I know they are trying to re-evaluate the history lessons there,” she said. Re-writing India’s history has not gone without controversy, however, as recent accounts surfaced about nationalist groups trying to deny the migration of Aryan groups to India that among other things, set up a caste system to subjugate indigenous groups there.

Members of the Tribal Community Alliance hope that in Massachusetts Columbus Day is eventually replaced with Indigenous People’s Day like it has been in states like Puerto Rico and most Latin American countries. “Native Americans are in the greatest state of poverty in this country. They are the people that are the most oppressed, the most forgotten, and the most mistreated by this government. And people have forgotten about them,” said Alicia.

Photos by Jonathan McIntosh
Photos of Brookline High Columbus Protest
Photos of Brookline High Columbus Protest
Photos of Brookline High Columbus Protest
Photos of Brookline High Columbus Protest
Photos of Brookline High Columbus Protest
Photos of Brookline High Columbus Protest
Photos of Brookline High Columbus Protest
Photos of Brookline High Columbus Protest
Photos of Brookline High Columbus Protest
Photos of Brookline High Columbus Protest
Photos of Brookline High Columbus Protest
Photos of Brookline High Columbus Protest
Photos of Brookline High Columbus Protest
Photos of Brookline High Columbus Protest
Photos of Brookline High Columbus Protest
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Speaking of Genocide
10 Oct 2006
Modified: 02:34:18 PM
I heard that this entire thing packed up and left when some started carrying a Palestinian flag and could not be intimidated by the Indy media people there to put it away.

What is the message when the ENTIRE crowd leaves because some one has a sign that says...

"USA" and "Israel" are genocidal projects that must be shut down'
support using your brain
10 Oct 2006
well...When someone brings a palestinian flag into a highschool in a town where almost 100% of people are Jewish, without taking into account that these are highschool students who probably have never been exposed to the palestinians' side of the story, without contacting the organizers, without trying to have a conversation with the attendees, without any relevant literature... without even so much as a simple explaination of how the struggle in Palestine completely connects with the genocide started by columbus (which it does).. what the hell do you expect!! And then to call them "racists little zionists"... That so called "palestinian rights activist" did more to promote zionism and blind hate for palestinians that anything else. Maybe next time he should think about his tactics, and try talking to people like fellow humans as opposed to being selfish, overly confrontational, and unflinching. Props to the organizers from Brookline high, I hope that said individual's actions does not deter them from learning about the struggles of the palestinian people, which are very similar to the struggles of native americans.
blatant disregard for student protest organizers
10 Oct 2006
At the risk of creating a off-topic thread here, I would like to address the above comment by Anitfa briefly.

Yes the Brookline High student organization decided to covert their roadside protest into a roaming precession through Coolidge Corner. Making this choice hightened the visiblity of their brave and excellent message about Columbus Day.

They did this only after David R. showed up in front of the high school carrying a giant Palestinian flag and a protest sign denouncing US/Israel war crimes in the west bank and Gaza.

His prominent display sparked great concern because of the reasons “anonomous participant” rightly noted above…

A) It was not respecting the topic of the high school student’s protest or their organizing of the event.

B) It was potentially endangering the student’s activists work because passers-by and fellow students might connect them to David’s off-topic message. He did not even have any relevant information about the conflict connection to Columbus.

C) It was tactically foolish in a place like Brookline if indeed he did want to educate people about the Palestine/Israeli issue, though I doubt education was his goal.

When asked repeatedly to please move his protest to another location, he flatly and crudely refused. A women with David, even began calling all the high school students “racists” and “Zionists” for objecting to David’s attempt to co-opt their event.

The students, as well numerous other activists at the event, tired speaking with David about his tactics. Explaining that this was a event organized by high school students around Columbus day and that his sign and flag were not only badly chosen for this particular protest but were also NOT in solidarity with the student group’s wishes for their event. It might have been possible to connect the two issues in a respectful, informational and constructive way, however such notions seem lost on David.

He refused to listen, apparently having no idea the meaning of the word solidarity, and no understanding about organizing tactics.

This is not the first time David has blatantly disregarded the wishes of protest organizers and community members in favor of his own often off-topic and inflammatory protest sign messages.

He has in fact become rather infamous in Boston activist circles, especially among those working tirelessly for Palestinian human rights and an end to the occupation. His signs and actions at the Lebanon Peace rallies and at a Brandice University free speech event are just two recent examples.

It’s time for David to be accountable to the activist and organizing community for his actions.

Before the attacks come flying, please note that I have not defended US/Israeli policy in this comment. I think my activist record speaks for itself on the Israel/Palestine struggle.
breathtakingly patronizing and dishonest smear attempt above
11 Oct 2006
Wow Jonathan, your dishonest smear attempt was breathtakingly patronizing.

Where do I begin?

You speak of solidarity.

Palestine and the world just watched you walk away from the soul single person carrying the symbol of popular Arab resistance to Zionist engineered and US backed genocide in the middle east. Will any of them be left to forgive you?

You speak of education.

This individual you tried to intimidated and then abandoned and outed has single handedly done the work of a hundred activists in challenging the frankly unbelievable racism and islamiphobia in the Boston activist, zionist left and perpetrator communities.

You speak of accountability.

In all my travels I have not seen such a profoundly malicious, wealthy and powerfull array of violent criminals and racist murders operating freely with such renown and acclaim as I have in the zionist communities in and around Boston.

If you claim to be an activist and an organizer in Boston and you have not confronted this sick and disturbing reality on all levels I am disappointed in you.

The lone, courageous and principled defender of a common sense, true and just opinion against genocide you chose to alienate and defame under zionist peer pressure has done far more than his share of the struggle to liberate Palestine.

Do they really need your kind of activist record, or concept of solidarity?

Solidarity Indeed
11 Oct 2006
I can understand your desperation and pain when talking about Palestinian issues because they are indeed some of the most desperate and forgotten people in the world. The Palestinian cause is a just one, and we thank you for your work.

However, we can't put a blindfold over our eyes and claim that the Palestinian cause is the ONLY and most justified one. That the Palestinian cause should have prominence over all others. In the case of Native Americans, we are talking about a 500 year old story of genocide and abuse. That is not to say their cause is the most important, but they DO deserve the space and respect they need to voice their own pain and desperation.

You are not doing justice to Palestinians by calling anyone who you deem your "antagonist" a racist and a zionist. You need to seriously step out of yourself and respect other people's struggles.
Keep your zionism off their ancestors graves
11 Oct 2006
Jonathan and Sophia ditched the loan Palestine guy to go with some who were UNREPENTANT WEST BANK COLONISTS!

This effort is is in line with the recent campaine to COOPT the atocieties in Rawanda and Armenia as a vessel to carry and conceal the zionist agenda in the middle east, africa and especially the Sudan.

The token tribal members of this initative should protect the graves of there ancestors so that they are not used as a platform for the zionists agenda against Sudan thru the Darfur door and as a vantage point to attack real anti racist activists as is happening here.
you owe these students an apology
11 Oct 2006
Unbelievable! Are you really accusing a group of high school students concerned about social justice and indigenous rights of being “racist zionist colonizers”? And that without actually knowing any of them or their points of view on the Palestine issue? The only reason being that they didn’t not want their Columbus Day protest to be connected with David’s tactless Israel protest. These are exactly the kind of comments unwelcome in the activist community and unwelcome on David’s signs.

You are making “You are either with us or with the enemy” kinds of statements, which are favored by totalitarians everywhere. The world is NOT neatly divided into Zionists and Anti-Zionists. Nor is it not divided cleanly into “good” and “evil”. They are many people facing serious life and death struggles around the world that have nothing to do with the Palestine/Israel issue.

It is quite possible that many of the students are concerned about Palestinian human rights, it is also possible that they might not have looked into the issue yet, or maybe that just feel that David’s aggressive confrontational protest style are not helpful in educating people in their school about any issue.

I’d say you (and david) owe these students an apology or two at the very least.
Vote Green Party. Vote for David Rolde.
11 Oct 2006
Vote today!
shut up david
11 Oct 2006
five bucks Antifa is actually David Rolde. that's the exact same shit he spews all the time.

how the hell can you say the effort to stop the genocide in Sudan is a Zionist aggression? for christs sake, people are fucking dying and just because many of the people trying to stop it are Jewish, doesn't mean they all have some alterior motive. shit do you think that us jews go every year to some meeting where the lawyers and bankers that secretly run the world give us our objectives for the year?
Now theat you mention it Rabbi: The World Zionist Congress
11 Oct 2006
"shit do you think that us jews go every year to some meeting where the lawyers and bankers that secretly run the world give us our objectives for the year?"


Zionist World Congress
^Countless Lies, Distortions and Smears Above Folks^
11 Oct 2006
Jonathan isn’t what’s unbelievable your pathetic attempts at covering your and Sophia’s asses?

The question was and please note that unlike yours my quotes refer to something that was actually and really written here by you or me...

"What is the message when the ENTIRE crowd leaves because some one has a sign that says...

"USA" and "Israel" are genocidal projects that must be shut down'"


Doesn’t this say alot about “...their points of view on the Palestine issue?"

If you all really were “...concerned about social justice and indigenous rights” why did the Indy media people harass the guy with the "USA" and "Israel" are genocidal projects that must be shut down'" sign?

Also who died and made you the god of exactly what kind of comments are welcome in the activist community and welcome on David’s signs?

Is it true that it was you and Sophia who were being "aggressive" and "confrontational" and making “You are either with us or with the enemy” kinds of statements and if so isn’t doing something wrong to people and then accusing them of being the offender the hallmark of totalitarians?

No one accused them of being anything but what some admitted to freely being, the families of soldiers in the jewish army and UNREPENTANT WEST BANK COLONISTS!
David Rolde, our local Hizbullah and GRP activist
11 Oct 2006
Rolde & half Ross.jpg
Rolde half & Ross.jpg
Check these out: (FOX TV video)

That event turned me into an amateur photo and video journalist. Thank you, David & Co. for my new passion! was what followed, and then there were others, too.

In the 3rd and 4th photos David Rolde, who is the GRP Secretary, displays a "Divest from Israel, not Sudan" sign, while holding a PLO flag, standing next to other GRP luminaries -- Grace Ross, MA gubernatorial candidate; Wendy Van Horne, candidate for Lt. Gov.; and James O'Keefe, their treasured Treasurer.

A vote for GRP is a vote for David Rolde. Woo-hoo!
See also:
12 Oct 2006
Someone who tries to co-opt an action organized by others and impose their own political message, even if it's correct, is either a vanguard or is trying to be disruptive.
Message vs. Tactics
12 Oct 2006
Modified: 01:39:02 PM
Sigh, I fear this is going nowhere, as David (and friends) are refusing to take any responsibility for their brazen disruptive actions and their malicious words directed at high school students.

I would only go on to say, please stop confusing the message and the way the message is delivered.

Again I (and others) are not necessarily taking issue with your sign on the 9th which read:

"USA" and "Israel" are genocidal projects that must be shut down”.

What I (and others) are actually taking issue with is the way you presented your message and, in this case, where you presented it. The fact that you cannot seem to differentiate between the two is troubling.

You blanket condemnation of anyone that has a problem with you personally or the crude manner in which you present your views, dose not mean they are all “UNREPENTANT WEST BANK COLONISTS” as you keep insisting.

Hopefully other members of the activist community will keep challenging you, as they did on the 9th, whenever you are disrespectful of their social justice events and activities.

ALSO: I would be very careful about statements like “Jewish army”, if you mean the IDF, than say IDF, if you mean Jewish people living in America that might or might not support Israel’s actions than you might sound very anti-Semitic. Do not confuse Jewish people, religion or culture with the crimes of a State.
Whos Dead Ancestors Will Row The Zionists Boat Up The Nile Into Sudan to Darfur?
13 Oct 2006

The jewish army calls its self the jewish army, why should anyone else be concerned about calling it what it calls itself and what it is?

Why should anyone confer them state name or privileges when they are the perpetrators of international gangsterism and racist genocide?

The people in it are not from Palestine or their parents aren't so why should they be given a name that legitimizes or implies origin in a ethnically cleansed and stolen community?

the only common denominator in the jewish army is that the people in it are jewish, or claim to be phonies, and they are armed.

I could spell out the ridiculous and hypocritical distortions you've made above to defame the guy with the "USA" and "Israel" are genocidal projects that must be shut down'
sign and your pathetic attempts to slither out of it by misconstruing what Ive said but its so obvious is it really necessary?

Also is it true that someone in the high school group called the cops on the guy and claimed he was using racial epitaphs or slurs?

speaking of slurs if i were you i would be carefull about insinuating something said here sounded "very anti-Semitic" because i don't see any Semites in my last post or your photos.

European jews are not the semites.

Arabs are Semites.

Also noah your on you owe me 5 bucks.
13 Oct 2006
well if that's true then i have been missing outon the world domination. shit. no one called the cops david. people were talking about it but they didn't.

shut up about semantics. whether or not euopean jews are semites doesn't matter. what you've been saying is very anti-Jewish. you are seeing in black and white. the Palestinian crisi is not the only issue here, albeit an important one. honestly you me and Jonathan are on the SAME fucking side. you are just being a douche about it. you had no place at that protest, and you had no right to call them kids zionists and racists. your protests are tactless and they alienate people who would otherwise be on your side. and if you'r not David, then he does all that not you, but still.

let me give you some news. not all jews are zionists. not all jews are implicit in the murder of Palestinians. i am Jewish. i am proud of that. what i am not proud of is what Jewish folks have done in the last 50 or so years in the middle east.

you call yourself Antifa, butyousound very fascist, authoritarian, and dogmatic.
Brookline Students
15 Oct 2006
Columbus brought a disaster to the New World. The first day he saw the welcoming inhabitants he wrote in his journal that they would “make fines slaves.”

I agree with people who protest the “Columbus Day” holiday.

I think the man with the nervous smile who shows up at all kinds of events with the Palestinian flag and strangely worded anti-Zionist signs is odd at best.

But it is also a little ironic that students go out in public with signs to interrupt the public’s Columbus Day holiday, only to have someone interrupt their interruption.

I support the students, but I do have to laugh at their consternation when this guy is ruining all their photo’s. He’s like the bratty 10-year-old brother making faces in the family portrait. “Can’t we have one nice picture?” my mother used to say.

This is what democracy looks like, especially on a public street. You have a right to be there, he has a right to be there.
He's creepy
17 Oct 2006
I just think that the "Flannel Guy" is kinda creepy.
Common sense ain't common
17 Oct 2006
This discussion is a good example of one of the reasons why most people are not interested in "activism". Activism attracts fire-breathing zealots. Those zealots will do everything they can to alienate anyone who do not 100% share their point of view. (ie, this guy with the flag). Anyone with a modicum of social skills would understand how ridiculous his crashing the party was. He never will.

People who actually have a life will quickly grow tired of the friction with such types and move on to more pleasant activies - ie, not going to protests and dealing with idiots.
Oh, Boston
19 Oct 2006
This activist problem is really magnified in Boston, where people don't have any conscious sense of goals or strategies, where people with different goals argue endlessly about the "effectiveness" of their tactics (effectiveness is relative to goals), and where "tactics" don't include direct action, but rather just rallies and marches, so nothing ever gets done. It's not like this everywhere.