Occupy Needs a Spanking

Carina - Posted on 22 February 2012

Art work by Carina Lomeli www.carinalomeli.com

Yes, I want peace. Yes, I want change.

The message is good. Let the elite give back what they took from all people.

As the rain crept in and out of the Day of Action, January 20th had come. I arrived at the 5 o'clock march, the last march that would lead us into "action".

I looked for a pole underneath the big Bank of America building to lock my soaking bike to, while carrying my DECOLONIZE EVERYTHING sign.

It's the only message that means anything to me, keeping in mind they have not changed their name... yet. I walk around the crowd taking photos, singing & chanting. Only guessing what the next move was. The group then walked up Market toward where I thought was City Hall, but to my surprise we ended up on Van Ness and took a right on Geary, stopping right in the middle of the intersection. The man with the speakerphone yells, "Are we gonna take this Building?!"

Another witness and participant in the Occupy protests, known as Bad News Bruce, explains his side of the story while he stood in the front lines:

'You have all seen the San Francisco Occupy. I, Bad News Bruce as a field reporter for Poor Magazine, knew about this action but never said anything. This action was planned to show the cuts in arts and education. The three theaters they chose to protest were in use that day. These theaters were not known to the general public. So this reporter's conclusion was that there was spies in the organization or moles listening in, informing the police of the location. So the last day we had to do something about it.

"I didn’t care where they had their secret site because I wanted to be a neutral reporter, but I was getting texts and e-mails all day long from people that shouldn't have known the key locations in the first place. I was taking all info as gossip. As the March arrived at Cathedral Hill the entire riot squad of 200 or 300 police was waiting for us in front of the entry. My own private investigation found there were tear gas canisters with tear gas grenades.

"A few people people tried rushing the gate of the designated building takeover, including this reporter, but it got us nowhere. We decided to march to find a safer route into the hotel. This is where things got ugly. Some the protesters broke into a luxury dealership but did not enter. It's strange cause in Latin America where they have revolutionary marches they do the same, but also take pictures in the car to claim the car in the name of revolution.

"The windows were all broken, these kids were acting like provocateurs or cop informants. Everyone else stood around watching and marching. With their crow bars in their hands, nobody wanted to start dialogue with them. This is a violation of the codes of the 99%, which is against violence. Everybody had to take the oath. We went down 2 blocks on Eddy and Franklin, made our way back to the hotel where the back fire escape was magically opened. I went to the 3rd floor, a few people were acting like brat kids. This I'm opposed to cuz you're adding a bad dimension when the press is following you around. At this point in the building takeover they should have acted with restraint.

"After, we went into the swimming pool area where people were acting normal, talking about doing a General Assembly and plans, but as I walked back out to the hallway I saw an idiot taking a door from inside as a souvenir. Then I saw the melee (violence) start from the west side of the building. This is also not a sign of good communication, it is a sign that you are not trying to be friends with the state. In an interview with the press I told the truth when I said they were acting like 'frat brats when there was no need.'

"At this point banners were supposed to go up, never to put graffiti, because press takes pictures and they can use it to their advantage. Other colleagues have seen the damage, as you will see in the pictures provided. I hope next time we try to take over a building it will be less violent. Sincerely yours, Bad News Bruce."

POOR News Network has been reporting and supporting all the things that are still not even talked about at these progressive movements. We even voluntarily (without money) published The Decolonizers Guide to a Humble Revolution in October of 2011. This was after we noticed how people who were not white or students, were getting silenced and detached in the Occupy Movement, among other things. It lists some of the most useful contacts for organizing in the Bay Area, and introduces work like poetry and teachings about how the most oppressed people have been resisting systematic political abuse for centuries...before slavery, before the recent big awakening. It's about fighting the cult of individuality and making movements safe for all people, children and elders and disabled folks and folks in the prison system alike.

The safety of our elders and children should be the most important goal. This march was not only an unsuccessful building takeover, and unsafe for elders and children, but it gave the Occupy movement a bad rep for throwing things out the windows onto cops' heads, and for making graffiti and destruction of property. I do understand that aggression is caused by the authority and brutality of police, but if we the people react in the same manner, than how much better are our ideals. When people destroy property during a march it puts everyone in danger. Even though some are willing to give their lives, not all are, much less trying to get arrested. How can we prevent this expression of aggression? How can we keep this movement a safe place for all the 99% not just the 12% that yell, "kill the rich"? Until this is addressed properly, I will not feel safe. Destruction is not the answer.

...they have revolutionary marches they do the same, but also take pictures in the car to claim the car in the name of revolution."

This may be because they have learned that here in non-Latin America getting your picture taken inside a car dealership that you've broken into can lead to criminal charges.

"How can we keep this movement a safe place for all the 99% not just the 12% that yell, "kill the rich"?

There's only one way: toss the 12%, and make it a movement of the 87%. It doesn't sound as sexy as "99%" but it gives the movement back the moral high-ground.

that would defeat the purpose of the movement. We must keep reminding ourselves that the only way to achieve revolution is by peaceful means. It is possible.


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