Live Blog of National “Day of Action” – November 17, 2011

by on November 17, 2011 · 6 comments

in Civil Disobedience, Civil Rights, Economy, Media, Organizing, Popular

3:03 pm -In San Diego at the Federal Building where some tents have been erected by janitors seeking justice, Homeland Security police showed up at 2:14 pm and gave the first warning to vacate.

3:02 pm – NYC: Police are arresting protesters who are sitting in the road just before the Brooklyn Bridge.  Cars are not going through the crowd, so the bridge is closed.

2:58 pm – PT – Many, many people are rallying in NYC right now.  Somewhere between 10 and 20,000 have gathered. Air space over NYC has been closed. People are starting to move towards Brookyn Bridge.

2:53 pm –  There’s a report that nearly an hour ago, around 1,000 protesters in Chicago were beginning to march; estimates that the crowd in Boston has now reached about 2,000.  Also,  according to reports coming in on Twitter, MLK bridge in St Louis has been shut down by protesters for the past 2 hours.

2:43 pm – Chicago – Arrests are being made of about 30 protesters sitting on La Salle Street Bridge.

A group of protestors waits to be arrested as they stand their ground on the La Salle Street Bridge in Chicago.

2:41 pm – There is a huge rally going on in Foley Square in New York City with speakers.

2:40 pm – [Readers: if you are reading this live blog, please let us know in the comments section.]

2:34 pm PT – It’s now 5:34 pm in New York City. Reports of over 10,000 people in Foley Square right now. Where is Foley in relation to Zuccotti Park and the Brooklyn Bridge?  A little while ago, Mayor Bloomberg claimed at a press conference that only about a 1000 people were involved in the protests today. And he is a billionaire and mayor??? OMG! He’s in denial serious denial.

2:27pm Pacific Time – Wondering what happened up at UC Berkeley – Here is the answer:  Authorities early Thursday morning cleared an encampment set up by Occupy protesters on the campus of the University of California, Berkeley.   Police in riot gear conducted a raid on the encampment around 3:30 a.m. Thursday, removing about 20 tents and arresting two protesters. Television footage showed a bulldozer moving into the area after the raid. …  More than 100 officers and sheriff’s deputies from three agencies, including campus police, surrounded the 40 or so campers and gave them 10 minutes to gather their belongings and leave, the San Francisco Chronicle reports. …  Two of the campers stayed behind, and there were reportedly no clashes with police, unlike Nov. 9 when police jabbed students with batons and arrested 40 people as the university sought to uphold the campus ban on camping.

2:17 pm – With the drums beating cadence – marchers in NYC seem to be moving into battle – a non-violent one, however.  Foley Square is shoulder to shoulder.

2:15 pm – Ottawa, Canada–  Dozens of Occupy Ottawa protesters blocked lanes of traffic outside the U.S. Embassy Thursday in an effort to fight back against those in other cities who have been kicked out of their camps.   The group stood blocking half of the intersection at York Street and Sussex Drive holding signs and delivering speeches at around noon. …  Vehicles in one of the eastbound lanes on Sussex Drive and those turning off of York Street were still able to get through, however. About six Ottawa police officers parked motorcycles alongside the protesters and directed traffic. …  Many of Thursday’s participants have been camped out in Confederation Park since mid-October to protest against what they say are global economic inequalities. Protesters at several similar camps across Canada and the United States have recently been kicked out of the public spaces they were occupying.

2:14 pm – New York City: Foley Square is just about full – and the marchers from Union Square have not even arrived yet.

2:12 pm PT – Marching protesters in NYC are chanting: “Bloomberg – beware! Zuccotti Park is everywhere!”

2:04 pm PT – Las Vegas – Twenty-one Occupy Las Vegas protesters were arrested Thursday in an orchestrated demonstration for stopping traffic on Las Vegas Boulevard in front of a federal building, an action held in solidarity with events in other cities marking the two-month anniversary of a movement that began in New York.   No scuffles developed, no injuries were reported and police said each would be given a misdemeanor summons and released.

2:03 pm Demonstrators in NYC have a permit to rally at Foley Park, but of course do not have a permit to march onto Brooklyn Bridge.

2:00 pm – PT – St Louis and Kansas City:  Members of the Occupy movement planned to gather on both sides of Missouri on Thursday to mark the two-month anniversary of the movement’s birth with demonstrations in St. Louis and Kansas City. …  The demonstrations were among many planned in cities across the country, where protesters have gathered for weeks to decry income inequality and what they see as a government system that permits and encourages corporate greed. …  In St. Louis, the protesters planned to march from Kiener Plaza, where many of them had camped for weeks, to the Martin Luther King Bridge that spans the Mississippi River. Organizers say many of the nation’s bridges and roads are in dire need of repair, and that Congress could create jobs by investing more in improving infrastructure. … In Kansas City, protesters planned to gather on sidewalks on a bridge spanning Interstate 70 to protest efforts to turn the interstate into a toll road. Occupy Kansas City leaders say the toll would be unfair to the working class and poor.

1:53 pm PT – In Detroit:  Over 1,000 people have shut down the Second Ave. bridge over 1-94 in Detroit, Michigan.

Protesters in LA block a key intersection.

1:50 pm – There’s a rally going on right now at the Federal Building in downtown San Diego.  A few tents have been set up.

1:45 pm News from Washington DC:  20 minutes ago,  Occupy D.C. marchers leave Key Bridge,  march up M Street and back through downtown. D.C. police say few problems so far.  … Earlier,  hundreds of protesters from the Occupy D.C. movement move through the streets of Georgetown as tourists gawk and reach for their cameras outside Georgetown Cupcake. At the bridge, they are greeted by dozens of police from both D.C. and Arlington, as well as U.S. Coast Guard patrolling the waters of the Potomac.

1:37 pm – 3 to 5 thousand have converged on Foley Square, chanting and with drums being beaten. Massive show of police.

1:36 pm Protesters are chanting “New York City is a people’s town! Shut it down!”

1:34 pm Several thousands are marching down Broadway in NYC.  Press are complaining that their press badges are not being accepted by police.

1:32 pm (4:32 in NYC) – It’s getting darker in NYC.  A huge police force is waiting for the OccupyWS marchers to arrive.

1:24 pm PT – PITTSBURGH — Approximately 200 people participated in an Occupy Pittsburgh march to the Greenfield Bridge, where a sign that says “Good Jobs Now” is being displayed to drivers on Interstate 376.   They met at Magee Park in Greenfield and stepped off around 3:45 p.m., walking on Greenfield Avenue toward the bridge.   Two city motorcycle officers were at the head of the “Occupy The Bridge” march, with other police cars stationed along the route.

1:22 pm PT – More police are showing up in NYC as thousands are converging on Foley Square.

1:18 pm Organizers in NYC report that the “occupy the subway” actions planned for this afternoon do not and never have included any efforts to obstruct riders or delay trains, as Mayor Bloomberg has claimed. In fact, the plan is simply to pass out flyers around the entrances to the subways. Organizers say Bloomberg’s claim is intended to “smear the movement,” and note that many media outlets have uncritically repeated it.

1:15 pm PT – Thousands are marching – police pulling barricades into the street – but some are being knocked over – police run to guy who knocked them over. But only a few dozen cops are about to face off with 3 to 5 thousand demonstrators.

1:13 pm PT – NYC – Thousands on the march, chanting: “Whose Streets? Our streets!” as the crowd has taken the streets. It is believed that they are marching towards the Brooklyn Bridge – where 700 were arrested earlier in the OWS actions.

Peaceful arrests have begun in Portland on the Steel Bridge.

1:12 pm PT Portland – Earlier today:  Occupy Portland joined the nationwide N17 protests Thursday morning with a gathering at the east end of the Steel Bridge.  …  Like protests planned throughout the United States, Portland’s demonstrators plan to occupy banks and financial institutions, and possibly other businesses. Events begin with this morning’s march into downtown, but protest organizers have not released specifics about their mobilization on banks and businesses, which is supposed to begin about 11 a.m.  …  Early Thursday, Portland police closed the Steel Bridge to all but TriMet bus and MAX traffic, freight and passenger rail service. Other commuters were rerouted in anticipation of the rally and march. However, protesters said they planned to get arrested by pushing their way onto the bridge at 8 a.m.

1:08 pm – Los Angeles : Hundreds have shut down a key intersection in LA – 23 arrests reported.

1:05 pm PT – Demonstrators in NYC plan to rally at Foley Square at 2pm Pacific Time. They plan to march to the Brooklyn Bridge – although police say they will not allow protesters to march on the bridge but on the sidewalks only.

12:58pm In San Diego, Occupy San Diego has marched over to the Federal Building in solidarity with the Labor Council and Justice for Janitors. Some have set up tents in the area just north of the Federal Building. There is a rally going on at the moment.

12:57 pm – Huge crowd in NYC getting set to march.

12:56 pm PT – Occupy Dallas – More than a dozen people were arrested on Thursday morning in Dallas when police on horseback and in riot gear evicted Occupy Dallas protesters from a site near City Hall where they have been camping for the past six weeks.  There was no violence. Dallas city officials put the number of people arrested at 18, while Occupy Dallas officials said 17 were arrested.

12:40 pm –  Police in New York City say 175 people have been arrested so far today.

12:34 pm –  Also  today, Occupy LA is staging a massive rally today as part of the day of action. 18 arrests are being reported so far.  … Occupy Dallas faced eviction overnight, with more than a dozen protesters arrested. The eviction came just after the city supposedly struck a deal wit protesters to be able to stay in the encampment until next month. … Today is actually an International Day of Action: London – Occupy St. Paul’s Cathedral in London faces eviction this evening.

12:30 pm PT –  Earlier today, in Portland, protesters were arrested today while marching onto the city’s Steel Bridge.  Protesters walked onto the Steel Bridge about 8:30 a.m. in defiance of police, the beginning of what was expected to be a day-long series of demonstrations.  One group of about 20 protesters sat down as they reached a line of officers in riot gear. Police started taking them into custody a few minutes later without incident.   Another group stood, held signs and chanted behind the group sitting. …  Police have reportedly shut down the bridge.

Noon, Pacific Time; I was not going to do this but there is just too much going on across the country.

Thousands of Occupy Wall Street protesters tried to shut down Wall Street. They retook Zuccotti Park and there have been at least one hundred people arrested.

Meanwhile in Los Angeles, 25 have been arrested as unions and Occupy LA people converged in downtown LA.

11:50 am Some marchers are now moving uptown, others are staying put in the park.

 11:30 am Crowd is still milling in Liberty Plaza: next events are in neighborhood subway stations and Union Square at 3pm. Organizers have made it clear that the subway event will not shut down trains, but media-fueled rumors to that effect continue.

11:15 am Pacific Time: The park is re-opened, however, with entry points and exit points. “people CAN go in and out,” tweets Jaffe, adding that the drums, once so controversial, are back in full force and likely quite welcome at this point. The livestream confirms this.

11:05 am: From the livestream: A man named Brendan nicknamed “Romania” was “reportedly” hit in the face by a baton, was bleeding, and was escorted out. Protesters being interviewed in the park confirming this report: the man was kicking the barricades and “They started beating him down” and stripped his clothes off while doing so. The UStream cameraman says the beating is believed to be an “act of retaliation” for his kicking the barricades

9:50pm: Reports of police kettling protesters (and some non-protesters) inside Zuccotti Park. Seeing speculation about upcoming mass arrests, as police swarm in with buses. From AlterNet contributor Meredith Clark: “MASSIVE raid underway at Liberty.” From Twitter user Michael Tracy: “I think we’re trapped in Zuccotti Park.”

 9:06am: Situation is still tense at Zuccotti Park. Meanwhile, CNN reports that today’s arrest count in New York City may have topped 100.

8:52am: NYC police arrested a retired Philly police captain Raymond Lewis  in uniform.  His arrest can be seen in the sidebar video on this site. Actually there are two videos of Capt Lewis, one is him explaining why he is protesting, the other is of his arrest.

8:45am Pacific Time: As police showdown with protesters in Zuccotti Park, the occupiers are quickly re-establishing some semblance of an infrastructure. Reportedly some protesters set up a miniature version of the OWS kitchen with some granola bars, and the People’s Library Twitter feed says, “The People’s Library is open. #OWSLibrary is mobile, and on the streets!”

 8:23am: Police using the metal barricades to smash into protesters. CNN is airing a near-continuous aerial shot of the scene.

 8:12 am PT : After streaming into the park, protesters are removing the barricades from around Zuccotti. Police shoving protesters and journalists. Several arrests. Huge police presence moving in.

{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

avatar Sarah November 17, 2011 at 4:38 pm

I’m reading


avatar Patty Jones November 17, 2011 at 10:18 pm

pssst, hi sarah, we’ve missed you.


avatar Steve Smith November 17, 2011 at 11:24 pm

Thanks for this blog, and the overall coverage of the movement here in San Diego. The “Mayor Bloomberg better beware, Zuchotti park is everywhere” chant worked well tonight on the Claremont bridge. Tonight, even the police were great, and the fraternal honking from a good percentage of I-5 drivers made the evening a success.


avatar david November 18, 2011 at 12:18 am

the live blog is great!history in the making


avatar Lois November 18, 2011 at 12:55 am

Clairemont bridge great response and great attendance !!! Very “civilized,” loved the horn honking as I did when I belonged to the California Nurses Association when we went on the rallies. Police were great. Packed with occupiers. The whole event worked very smoothly.


avatar nan November 18, 2011 at 2:48 am

read- THANK YOU!!!!! sharing link


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