Joyce L. Arnold, Liberally Independent, Queer Talk, equality activist, writer.
Occupy Oakland is the latest specific OWS protest, at least at this moment, to be shut down by police, acting on city official orders from above, of course. From Think Progress:
Oakland Police Use Rubber Bullets, Flash Grenades, And Smoke Bombs To Evict Occupy Oakland
… hundreds of Oakland police officers raided the camp. Dressed in riot gear, the police used rubber bullets, flash grenades, and gas canisters to forcibly evict and/or arrest the demonstrators who remained in the plaza.
A few related tweets:
DrtyLttlSecret RT @eroberts123: #ows mercenaries in Oakland using sonic cannons taking a page from the Syrian playbook ( #OCCUPYSF live at http://t.co/tJQpBvl9)
[Inserting my thoughts here: is this is the 21st Century equivalent of turning fire department water hoses on protestors?]
http://www.adbusters.org/campaigns/occupywallstreet spiral_one RT @Disob3dience: BART shuts down Oakland City Center stop to prevent people from coming to #OccupyOakland to protest police eviction. #opBART #ows #anonymous
nwbtcw #Occupy ppl aren’t just protesters when they’re in a park, theyre at it 24/7, you can kick them out of a park, but not out of the movement #ows
thinkprogressThinkProgress Police use gas to end Occupy Oakland
MachahirNewsMachahir Sami by WomanVote BREAKING: Reports: At least 85 people were arrested in #OccupyOakland, and #OccupySF early this morning in US. #OWS
shane_dangershane danger by Clarknt67 “What we’re trying to do is nip this problem in the bud,” said Sgt. Jason Dwyer #opd #occupyoakland #acab
Sgt. Dwyer, the bud has long since opened. And the reported use of gas and sonic cannons seems to reveal you – or more accurately, whoever above you made the decision – are well aware of that reality. The “bud nipping” moment is gone.
Things were different in Albany, NY. At Corrente lambert writes: (all emphasis mine)
Huge: Friday, Albany NY local police refused to arrest Occupiers, despite pressure from Cuomo, Democrat …
‘ALBANY — In a tense battle of wills, state troopers and Albany police held off making arrests of dozens of protesters … near the Capitol … over the weekend even as Albany’s mayor, under pressure from Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s administration, had urged his police chief to enforce a city curfew.
The situation intensified late Friday evening when Jennings, who has cultivated a strong relationship with Cuomo [D], directed his department to arrest protesters who refused to leave … the city-owned portion of a large park … .
‘We were ready to make arrests if needed, but these people complied with our orders,’ a State Police official said. …
A city police source said his department also was reluctant to damage what he considers to be good community relations that have taken years to rebuild. In addition, the crowd included elderly people and many others who brought their children with them.
‘There was a lot of discussion … about how it would look if we started pulling people away from their kids and arresting them … and then what do we do with the children?’ one officer said.
Remember the Occupy Police site – further indication that “bud nipping” is no longer an option.
An update on an earlier post, “The 99 Percent Declaration” from “An OWS Working Group”, which included this word from OWS:
Demands: A group claiming to be on the verge of issuing demands for #OWS has gotten the attention of a story hungry media. We are our demands. #OWS is conversation, organization, and action focused on ending the tyranny of the 1%.
As I noted then, the OWS website indicated this “Declaration” was not from them. Since then they’ve added additional thoughts, and I’m including this because there was so much discussion here about the “Declaration.” From Occupy, posted on October 21:
A group claiming to be affiliated with the General Assembly of Liberty Square and #ows has been speaking to the media on behalf of our movement.
This group is not empowered by the NYC General Assembly.
This group is not open-source and does not act by consensus.
This group only represents themselves.
While we encourage the participation of autonomous working groups, no single person or group has the authority to make demands on behalf of general assemblies around the world.
We are our demands. This #ows movement is about empowering communities to form their own general assemblies, to fight back against the tyranny of the 1%. Our collective struggles cannot be co-opted.
For Occupy, the movement is as much about process as it is anything else. The third edition of the online Occupied Wall Street Journal includes Enacting the impossible: On Consensus Decision Making:
On August 2, at the very first meeting of what was to become Occupy Wall Street, about a dozen people sat in a circle in Bowling Green. The self-appointed ‘process committee’ for a social movement we merely hoped would someday exist, contemplated a momentous decision (regarding General Assemblies). …
The anarchists in the circle made what seemed, at the time, an insanely ambitious proposal. Why not let them operate exactly like this committee: by consensus. …
Three months later, hundreds of assemblies, big and small, now operate by consensus across America. Decisions are made democratically, without voting, by general assent. According to conventional wisdom this shouldn’t be possible, but it is happening … .
The direct democratic process adopted by Occupy Wall Street has deep roots in American radical history. It was widely employed in the civil rights movement and by the Students for a Democratic Society. But its current form has developed from within movements like feminism and even spiritual traditions (both Quaker and Native American) as much as from within anarchism itself.
Once again I’ve had to pick and choose from a great deal of information. And once again, I’ll suggest checking out Occupy as a starting place. If nothing else, spend some time with the Twitter feed, to get an idea of what people are thinking and doing. Speaking of that, two additional tweets, not Oakland related:
AriMelberAri Melber by Aubs89 China has now banned the search term ‘Occupy’ when paired with a city.
randomrisk RT @randyferrell: Police Arrest Nurse Volunteers At Occupy Chicago http://t.co/PKwlMPXG #civilrights #protests #ows
I’d also strongly suggest you read spincitysd’s In the News post, Occupy Wall Street, The True Third Way.
Let us know about OWS news in your area, or just your thoughts in general, including about any bud nipping efforts.
(Photo via Think Progress)