The Red Goat Collective is an intergenerational, multi-racial, multi-gendered team of writers, artists, and activists.
Bringing together toughness and tenderness, the Goat resonates as a figure for our times.
Independent, tough, (even a bit stubborn), resourceful, difficult to enclose, known for surviving even thriving on rugged, steep, treacherous terrain, capable of subsisting on scarce and rough sources of food—with lips able to locate and extract the the leaf between the thorns—the Goat is a figure for the critical radicalism in our times. When there seems no pure or perfect place to stand. When ignorance and knowledge, clarity and confusion, are dispersed and distributed in deeply uneven ways and often entangled.
At the same time, the Goat is known for helping both humans and other animals (even supped up thoroughbred race horses) to calm down in times of stress. Goats are deployed for their therapeutic powers.
And of course, there is the long history of Scapegoating, whereby people who dissent or differ from the dominant group are labeled, cast out, purged, excommunicated.
The Goat has often been deployed a figure for the Devil or the Demonic, for the allegedly corruptive power of body, mind, and soul that a Puritanical culture and society must suppress, even by burning or hangings. In so far as the Goat refuses to become part of the passive obedient Herd, it remains a threat to the established order…and must be cast out.
Red –historically the color of the working-class movement for a world beyond capitalism, racism, nationalism, and empire has sadly eroded in USAmerican political symbology to be associated with the Right-wing Republican part—down to the infamous red Trumpist MAGA hats. We are inundated with talk of “Red” states vs. “Blue” states, while the long-standing left wing radicalism of what it once meant to be RED fades from official memory. (Official memory, but not from ours. To be clear: Red = Socialist / Communist / Anti-capitalist & Anti-Imperialist here.) We know all-too-well the term “Red Goat” may now initially sound to some as if in reference to beleaguered or targeted conservatives. We do not shrink from the association, though Trump and McConnel’s Red is NOT the Red to which we aspire—not in the slightest. And yet, it is the case now, sadly, in some “left” circles, that to raise what once were thought of as socialist or communist or pro-working-class ideas and arguments about universal human emancipation is to be pegged or confused as if one is “on the Right.” To raise radical socialist oriented criticisms of the left from the left can lead one to be “goated” as a closet conservative (or white supremacist, or misogynist etc), or as doing the work of the Right, by dupe-ishly challenging prevailing left tendencies, rather than concentrating on the “real enemy.” It’s predictable that in some circles, our opening Fallacies piece will be subject to some misreading of this kind, some honestly confused, some deliberate, cynical, and not in good faith. We ask that comrades and readers read and respond to what we actually write, not what others may project upon us out of such red-conflating fears.
The Red Goat Collective can be reached at : RedGoatCollective@protonmail.com