Boarders 4 Bernie
Stoke Much is officially backing Bernie Sanders for president of the United States of America. Further, we are creating Boarders 4 Bernie in a concerted effort to organize skaters around a candidate whose platform supports ideal circumstances for skateboarding. Skateboarding will always be a means to access the fringes of society, but it has also become a means to unify and empower broad groups of people–disenfranchised or otherwise. Skateboarding rooted itself in the society of the United States by reappropriating the architecture of consumerism: an endless expanse of concrete and asphalt wherein we are prodded, encouraged, and tormented to labor, spend, and repeat infinitely. Today, in countries around the world, skateboarding is quickly becoming an essential means for the collective reinterpretation of identity, participation, and civic action.
We don’t need challengers in the form of opponents in skateboarding, but skating with other skaters creates an entirely different experience. And so, when skaters around the world come together to skate we don’t do it because we have to, we do it because we truly want to engage with our communities. And together, our collective culture has had a profound influence on the way that the rest of the world sees everything from fashion, to music, to art, to the importance of subversiveness, to the support and celebration of people who are otherwise oppressed or dismissed. And now, we are showing the rest of society a stunning example of how to get along, get outside, do a lot, see a lot, have memorable and valuable experiences with friends and strangers, fix what’s wrong in the cities where we live, and not spend much money at all.
As skateboarders we say “No,” to many institutions of corrupt power every day, and in an era defined by corrupt power our culture becomes more and more relevant every day. We can transform the institutions that define our society and make them more suited for skateboarding. We can make it illegal to skate-stop a ledge. It starts with getting involved in neighborhood and city councils, and organizing support for a candidate who supports the ideal circumstances for skateboarders. First and foremost, Bernie Sanders has a consistent track record that proves he is prepared to take radical action in support of true institutional equality for all people. Whether you are trans, black, Mexican, a woman, a person with a disability, a member of a tribal nation, a skateboarder, or anyone else, Bernie is working to create a government that supports you and your rights. Secondly, Bernie supports public healthcare. So that means that we no longer have to worry about injuries in the same way. With public healthcare we are guaranteed access to the best doctors available, and we can age gracefully and not worry about our fun coming to an end. Third: with massive criminal justice reform, and a president who values dialog with citizens, the decriminalization of skateboarding is an achievable goal. And while skateboarding will always be constituted by outlaw origins; will always play host to the outcasts who have no choice but to reside at the fringes; skateboarding doesn’t have to remain illegal. Illegality isn’t essential to skateboarding: it’s essential to being an outcast in a regressive society. And if it’s wrong to back a progressive president whose values create a society where skateboarding can thrive, then we are not gonna be doing anything that resembles right.
Get involved in your local city council. By showing up at meetings, and making meaningful contributions you can influence the outcome of your city’s policy decisions. And, you can also hold elected officials accountable if they’re taking action against skateboarders. In the last decade skateparks have transformed from heinous rampy playgrounds where fun was rarified, to plaza-style havens where skateboarding has exploded–and that’s because skaers started advocating for these types of parks. By the time the Olympics hits cities across the country will be reaching for any connection they can draw to skateboarding. Get the conversation started now in your city, and if elected officials don’t want to listen then you should consider running for city council so that you can change things for all skaters in your city.
FREE DOWNLOADABLE SKATE WAIVER. Our society is ruled by documents, and protocols put in place by capitalist entities, and supported by generations of political policy. Breaking the law can get you arrested. But what happens when laws are unjust? Well, then breaking the law is a form of protest. Street skating is one of the greatest forms of protest ever created in the United States, but it is also one of the most targeted activities in the institutionalized suppression of anti-capitalism. So, given that most skaters are on their own against a corrupt system we figured we would do our best to provide some means to fight back against the prohibition of street skating without further exposure to legal action. Take this waiver with you when you go skating. If a security guard, a righteous citizen, or anyone else tries to kick you out just hand them this waiver and say, “I spoke with the operations manager, and I was told this is all you need in order for me to skate here.” Make sure you don’t say that you spoke to anyone who works there, and don’t mention any names when you mention the waiver. Say it just like it appears above, and you haven’t broken any laws, all you’ve done is make a statement that is easy to misconstrue. But your statement is true, because the operations manager of Stoke Much says this waiver is enough to overburden someone who isn’t thinking for themselves.