An Invitation to Support My Work
Dear friends, readers, supporters:
In the right hands, journalism is one tool to bolster struggles for liberation. I do this work because I believe in the possibility of better worlds. I also do it because I have a burning desire to help those worlds to be born.
In the past 18 months, I’ve been fortunate to accomplish more as a journalist that ever before. My work is being published
by a few of the US’ most widely-read news outlets. Looking ahead, I’ve never been more excited about any stories than ones on which I’m currently working.
The kind of journalism I do — hard-hitting, long-form investigative reporting — takes time and resources. It entails filing Freedom of Information Act requests (which often cost money), combing through stacks of public records, cultivating and maintaining relationships with sources, scanning news and social media outlets, and being on the ground as stories unfold. As a freelance reporter, it also requires finding a home for my stories once they are developed. I typically fund my own research and investigations, re-investing whatever fee I received from the last article as an advance on the next.
I’m grateful that, for the last few years, I’ve been able to meet all of these expenses — as well as living expenses — through the money I’ve earned from journalism. But unfortunately, I am now in a difficult situation. Partly owing to unforeseen costs, including costs associated with caring for a loved one who needed full-time support, I don’t currently have enough money to complete my biggest ongoing investigations. This situation has started to derail my work. And that’s why I am turning to you for support.
In roughly the next three weeks, I’m aiming to raise at least $3,300 from donations to my PayPal account, Venmo, or through checks mailed to my home address. If you are interested in contributing via personal check, please hit reply to this e-mail.
As you know, I would not be asking for your support if it were not truly important. And if I had better options than this e-mail appeal, I would not be writing it. On the other hand, I feel blessed to be able to call on you as my friends, family, and supporters. I am so grateful to have you.
I would like to offer a summary of some of my recent accomplishments, in case it helps you with your decision about whether to donate.
- I’ve begun contributing to The Guardian, one of the world’s five most widely-read newspaper web sites. Both of my published articles to date have ranked among the Guardian-US edition’s 10 most widely-read stories on the day of their publication.
- In May 2017, I co-authored a story for The Intercept detailing how mercenary forces hired by the corporation behind the Dakota Access Pipeline used tactics imported from the battlefields of Iraq and Afghanistan against the indigenous-led water protector movement at Standing Rock. Amy Goodman of Democracy Now!, who featured the story on her program, described it as “an explosive new investigation.” Voters in The Intercept’s year-end readers survey voted it the year’s number-one “most essential” story of 2017. Here was the official announcement:
Numerous Standing Rock activists used it to defend themselves against outrageous criminal charges, helping ward off convictions and jail sentences. Here’s one example. It is also playing a role in a lawsuit filed two days ago by indigenous water protectors, as well as a more significant role in a separate, ongoing civil rights lawsuit brought by multiple individuals who sustained injuries when police sprayed down water protectors with hoses amid sub-freezing temperatures and shot them with concussion grenades. And it caused TigerSwan, the mercenary corporation at the center of our reporting, to get in legal trouble.
- Northern California is where I live, where I started this work, and a region where I have waged various battles. I still publish stories of local importance whenever I can. One such story is “Living on Ohlone Land,” an in-depth feature on indigenous Chochenyo Ohlone people’s work toward cultural survival and renewal in the California East Bay Area.
- A Dec. 2017 story I wrote for The Intercept on the federal prosecution of Oglala Lakota water protector Red Fawn Fallis (pictured) provided one of the most detailed accounts of COINTELPRO-style disruption of a US-based grassroots activist’s life, and broader political movement of recent years. The story was a product of nine months of research, requiring multiple trips to North Dakota and dozens of Freedom of Information Act requests to accomplish.
- In March 2018, I published revelations concerning politically-motivated policing of anti-racist activists in Charlottesville during the run-up to the infamous August 2017 “Unite the Right” rally. This story, which drew on numerous documents I obtained from Freedom of Information Act requests, helped put the police’s horrifying failures on that tragic day in a new context. Several anti-racist activists in Charlottesville have cited this article as one of the most well-researched and significant stories in the wave of reporting following the ‘Unite the Right’ rally.
- Last year, Energy Transfer Partners and Donald Trump’s personal lawyer, Mark Kaswoitz, filed a federal conspiracy and racketeering lawsuit against Greenpeace, Earth First!, Red Warrior Camp, and other named parties. It is a clear effort to neutralize environmental activists and drive a wedge between indigenous people and other earth defenders. My Intercept co-authors and I published a detailed investigation concerning the underhanded tactics Energy Transfer Partners used to collect evidence for this lawsuit – fake social media accounts, debunked right-wing talking points, infiltration of protest camps by paid operatives, etc. The environmental groups and individuals targeted by ETP and Kasowitz have since used our articles as a significant source of information to defend themselves against these charges.
I am connected to those of you on this mailing list in various ways. Some of you are current friends of mine. Some are friends from a previous phase of my life. Some of you signed up when I made a public presentation. Some wandered onto my web site and signed up for this list by entering your e-mail address.
Regardless of how we are connected to each other, I appreciate your attention to this e-mail. And I ask that you never hesitate to let me know if I can be there for you in any way.
Again, I’ll list the ways to donate to me:
- My PayPal account is here or at this URL – https://www.paypal.me/WParrish185.
- My Venmo is here or at this URL – https://venmo.com/Will-Parrish-4.
- And, again, you can send me a check by replying to this e-mail and inquiring about my address.
Writing to you from beautiful Santa Cruz, and wishing you a colorful, happy autumn wherever you may be, I am,