By Kali Kat / Special to the OB Rag
Now with it’s fourth month anniversary, Occupy San Diego continues to make a presence in the San Diego community, this morning challenging a proclamation by the City Council that the City of San Diego is re-committed to protecting the rights of free speech expression in San Diego.
The proclamation was in response to the 100 year anniversary of the Free Speech fight in San Diego during which the 1912 San Diego City Council passed Ordinance No. 4623 banning free speech or assembly in a 49 block radius of downtown San Diego.
Members of Occupy San Diego who have been recent victims of free speech repression in San Diego sat in the audience watching while the proclamation was presented by Council Members Marti Emerald and Tony Garcia to representatives of the local chapter of the ACLU and the San Diego and Imperial County Labor Councils.
While the proclamation itself expresses “deep dismay” for the former City Council’s actions and “formerly reiterates the Council’s repudiation of this shameful ordinance”, members of Occupy San Diego questioned the proclamation based on the recent actions of the City.
Over 200 protestors have been arrested since Occupy San Diego’s first official march on October 7th, 2011 with charges ranging from unlawful assembly to noise ordinances to drawing on the sidewalk with chalk.
Mike Garcia, recently arrested for speaking during the Mayor’s State of the City address, started off by reminding the Council that the last time they saw him he was being escorted away in handcuffs being charged with felony conspiracy for speaking. During his speech a video played of recent unlawful arrests of OSD members at the Civic Center plaza, including himself being arrested for sitting in a chair.
Martha Sullivan, a member of Woman Occupy San Diego, was there to remind the Council of the amendment to Municipal Code 54.010 that OSD is proposing. Since the city has been using Municipal Code 54.010 to arrest members of OSD for encroachment, the amendment would protect peaceful picketing, lawful labor activities, and peaceful political activities on public land as well as private.
Kali Kat is the pseudonym of a member of the Occupy San Diego media team who was arrested herself during the police raid on October 28, 2011.