OB Rag Coverage of the Occupy Wall Street & Occupy San Diego Movements

“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.” ~Margaret Mead

The OB Rag has been following the Occupy Wall Street Movement since it moved into Zuccotti Park on the 17th of September, and several of us have been involved, on some level, in Occupy San Diego since it began planning later that same month. The articles on this page are an archive of pieces we have posted about the Occupy Movement.

Occupy San Diego

Get involved! For more information; on the Web, #OccupySD, Twitter, Facebook, Ustream & Livestream. For daily updates on issues relating to local efforts, subscribe to the OccupySD email newsletter maintained by Ray Lutz. Occupy San Diego needs bodies on the ground at 3rd and B St, Downtown San Diego

Rally at 8:30 a.m. to Protest Arrests of Occupy San Diego

October 28, 2011 by Staff

In protest of the arrests made of Occupy San Diego activists in the early hours of Friday, a protest rally has been called for 8:30 a.m. at the Wells Fargo Bank at 5th Avenue and B Street, two blocks east of the Civic Center Plaza.

At least 44 arrests were made as police swept through both occupation sites – the Plaza and Children’s Park at First and Island.

Calls to the police department and the mayor’s office are encouraged.

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San Diego Police Take Over Occupy San Diego – at least 44 Arrested

October 28, 2011 by Frank Gormlie
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Police Sweep Through Making Arrests and Confiscating Personal Belongings and Donated Supplies – Organizers Call for 8 am Protest Today at the Plaza.

In the early hours of October 28, San Diego Police swept through both encampments of Occupy San Diego, making at least 44 arrests and confiscating all personal belongings and all supplies and food that has been donated.

Around 1:45 am officers started to sweep through Children’s Park without warning and made at least 8 arrests there. Simultaneously, over hundred police and sheriffs deputies swept through Civic Center Plaza, ordering everyone out. A confrontation then occurred at B Street and 3rd Avenue as the remaining occupiers faced off with lines of blue and brown shirts. Police and sheriffs all had batons and other riot gear.

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#OccupySD Protesters are Being Arrested, Right Now in Civic Center and in Children’s Park

October 28, 2011 by Patty Jones

1:54 am, Calls coming in to Frank that arrests are being made at the plaza and at the solidarity site at children’s park! Approximately 6 were arrested at Children’s Park.  No warnings were given. Asst Police Chief Boyd Long announced that the Occupy San Diego site is “being cleared out.” What should people do who […]

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Occupy San Diego: Update on 3 Weeks of Occupation

October 27, 2011 by Frank Gormlie

Occupy San Diego jumped into history just 3 weeks ago, when on Friday, October 7th it sprang to life with a huge march around downtown that included a rally at Civic Center Plaza, and the first pitching of tents at Children’s Park.

Now, entering its third week, San Diego’s Occupy Wall Street incarnation has a monstrous achievement under its belt: it’s still going! People, protesters are still camped out at Civic Center Plaza. Despite all the problems, the tensions, the frictions – we are still there at San Diego City Hall. And the occupiers remain peaceful and non-violent.

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Occupy Wall Street, Kent State, and Chicago

October 27, 2011 by Source
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by Dan Beucke / Bloomberg News / October 27, 2011

Depending on your point of view, the Occupy Wall Street movement may be 1968 — or 1970 — all over again. And this week may mark the point where the bank protests go viral — or take a dangerous turn for the movement and those who support them. Such is the struggle by both sides to assign symbols to OWS.

Police attempts this week to clear protesters from encampments in Oakland, Atlanta, and other cities, complete with tear gas and horse-mounted police, brought to mind images from 1960s and ’70s era anti-war clashes. Then, on Tuesday night, Scott Olsen, an Iraq war veteran, was seriously injured after apparently being hit in the head by a police projectile.

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Occupy San Diego, Public Comments and Tony Young’s Dilemma

October 26, 2011 by Anna Daniels
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My thanks to the San Diego Occupiers who attended the City Council meeting on October 25th, to abbajerry for the video and Rocky Neptun for his commentary. The mic check and call for a resolution at the morning meeting was truly thrilling! Although I was not present at the meeting I did watch the two non agenda item public comment segments that are available in the City’s online video archive (the opening credit incorrectly displays Monday’s date of October 24th). The last comment period came at the end of the 4 hour session, late in the afternoon. I applaud the dozen or so occupiers who stayed there in order to provide public testimony on behalf of the movement.

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Tents and tension return to Civic Center Plaza at Occupy San Diego

October 26, 2011 by Frank Gormlie
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Tents have returned to the Occupy San Diego protest at the Civic Center Plaza. During the night time General Assembly held Tuesday, Oct. 25, tents began to appear. By last count there were eight new tents erected, and was described as “a direct action” event by those who pitched the tents on the concrete in the shadow of City Hall. The tents appeared to be newly purchased and several had “99%” written or painted on their sides.

The new tents visibly added to the tension and the daily/ nightly drama at the Plaza, as tents had been banned by the San Diego Police earlier during the occupation. Tents had been banned at the Plaza on Thursday, October 13th, in a memo delivered to the protesters.

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City Council Session Shut-down by Citizens Demanding Constitutional Rights in San Diego

October 25, 2011 by Rocky Neptun
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Tuesday, Oct 25:After spending almost an hour discussing an illegal scheme to transfer even more wealth to downtown hotel owners using taxpayers’ money; the San Diego City Council literally turned tail and ran from the council chambers when a coalition of community groups joined the Occupy San Diego movement in asking council members to support their rights to free speech and assembly within the city.

About 60 citizens marched from Children’s Park just before the 10 a.m. Council session and met up with the several hundred young people camped at the Civic Center Plaza. Ignoring the police demands to stay on the sidewalk, protestors took to the streets the entire route.

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Occupy Wall Street Oakland—“There are Children in There Without Gas Masks”

October 25, 2011 by Anna Daniels
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According to @occupyarrests, as of yesterday, 2,428 people had been arrested nationwide since the start of Occupy Wall Street.

Around 5:00 am this morning (10/25/11) hundreds of riot gear clad Oakland police stormed the Oakland Occupy Wall Street encampment. Reportedly using flash grenades, rubber bullets and tear gas they cleared the area of tents and arrested 70 people. According to legal observer Marcus Kryshka (see Marcus’ video), the police came in very quickly and denied media and legal observers access to the area.

See video inside…

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Petition San Diego City Council to Adopt a Resolution to Support Occupy San Diego

October 24, 2011 by Staff
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Occupy San Diego activists will march on City Hall tomorrow, Tuesday, October 25, to request that the City of San Diego adopt a resolution similar to the one adopted by Los Angeles, to support the Occupy San Diego protests and are requesting your help by marching with them and signing a petition (which will be presented to the council) to show your support.

You do not need to be a resident of the city to sigh this petition.

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Who Do We Shoot? A Paycheck Away from Poor in America’s Finest City

October 24, 2011 by Jim Miller
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Recently, Clare Crawford of the Center on Policy Initiatives noted that, “Even three full-time minimum wage jobs don’t make enough to make ends meet in San Diego County.” Crawford was responding to the release of a report by the Insight Center for Community Economic Development that documented how it now costs a family of three nearly $63,000 to make ends meet in San Diego.

This is according to the 2011 California Family Self-Sufficiency Standard and the grim news is that more than one million San Diegans are living in households earning less than that threshold. That’s close to a third of all San Diegans, much higher than the fifteen percent of San Diegans who fall under the official poverty line.

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Throw Them Out With the Trash

October 23, 2011 by Source
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Why Homelessness Is Becoming an Occupy Wall Street Issue

By Barbara Ehrenreich / TomDispatch.com

As anyone knows who has ever had to set up a military encampment or build a village from the ground up, occupations pose staggering logistical problems. Large numbers of people must be fed and kept reasonably warm and dry. Trash has to be removed; medical care and rudimentary security provided — to which ends a dozen or more committees may toil night and day. But for the individual occupier, one problem often overshadows everything else, including job loss, the destruction of the middle class, and the reign of the 1%. And that is the single question: Where am I going to pee?

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Under Police Pressure Occupy San Diego Expands to Children’s Park

October 22, 2011 by Frank Gormlie
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Occupy San Diego – our city’s own version of Occupy Wall Street – has expanded. Due to pressure being placed on the Occupy San Diego demonstrators by the police – a pressure which has prevented the protests’ ability to set up its support network, a solidarity station has been opened at Children’s Park in downtown at Island and First. The solidarity site will work to support the main occupation site, the Civic Center Plaza, where occupiers are now in their 15th day.

By late morning yesterday, October 21st, OccupySD activists had unloaded several vehicles worth of food and gear, and had begun to set up support stations that make up the occupy infrastructure. And by mid-afternoon, they had completed the set-up and establishment of the stations that support the movement. So, for the first time since last week, the Occupy San Diego efforts had the full panoply of its sustainability network: the food-line and kitchen, the medical station, sanitation, the library, arts and crafts, and some media.

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The Breaking Up of Occupy Tijuana Was Much Harsher than Media Reported

October 22, 2011 by Frank Gormlie

Demonstrators beaten after arrests – Americans included

Contrary to what much of the media reported, the breaking up earlier this week of the Occupy Tijuana protest was a lot harsher than originally reported. On Tuesday, October 18th, it was reported that up to 50 Mexican law enforcement agents broke up the encampment at 2:30 in the morning, an encampment that had been going on since Saturday, the 15th, and that 26 people were arrested.

However, according to an American present at the protest in Tijuana, the cops came at 7:30 to 8 pm, and ended up arresting as many as 60 people, many of them from this side of the border. David Fugate was at the site, and he told me that they were very peaceful, were holding signs and some were chanting near the intersection of Revolucion and 8th Street, on a grassy area.

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#OccupySD and City College Protesters Shut Down Local Bank of America

October 20, 2011 by Patty Jones
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At San Diego City College today more than a hundred students staged a walkout in solidarity with Occupy San Diego. After holding a rally at Curren Plaza where many students spoke to an enthusiastic crowd, about 150 protesters marched from the campus, down B Street, chanting and addressing pedestrians and onlookers, to the Civic Center Plaza to join the Occupy Movement protesters.

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Open Letter to Mayor Sanders and City Council: Police Shamed You

October 18, 2011 by Source
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By Bob Dorn

The actions of police on October 14, so clearly visible on YouTube, and presumably around the world, is the sort of official mayhem that brings down governments in other parts of the world.

That skin-headed cop with a mace can who wrapped his arms around throats and threw several people to the ground so that their heads crashed into the pavement committed a criminal act. He can easily be identified, and so can others at Civic Plaza on Oct 14 who can be seen provoking people and abusing them.

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Two dozen Occupy Tijuana protesters arrested for sleeping in public right-of-way.

October 18, 2011 by Source

By Sandra Dibble / SignOnSanDiego / October 18, 2011

TIJUANA — Some two dozen protesters in Tijuana affiliated with the Occupy Wall Street movement were arrested early today by police forces for sleeping in a public right-of-way. The detentions occurred at 2:15 a.m. near a traffic circle in Tijuana’s Rio Zone, according to Heriberto Garcia, Baja California’s human rights ombudsman.

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The Occupy Wall Street Movement Is One Month Old Today – and Look Around – It’s Now Everywhere

October 17, 2011 by Frank Gormlie
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On September 17, 2011, several thousand New Yorkers took over a small park in lower Manhattan, a block from Wall Street itself. Wall Street itself had been blocked from the demonstrators by New York’s finest.

The protesters took over Zucotti Park, a private space, and set up their encampment – and the Occupy Wall Street movement took off. This past weekend, there were over 100 Occupy actions in this country, and over a thousand around the world. A thousand. Get your mind around that.

Soon after Occupy Wall Street took hold, others followed: Occupy Boston, Occupy Denver, Occupy San Francisco, Los Angeles, and even Occupy San Diego, which had its first over-night “occupation” on Friday, October 7th.

But look at this – in one month, in exactly one month, this movement has changed our world. For how long – it remains to be seen. One month. This is incredible.

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Do you support Occupy San Diego? Then get on the phone right now and call the Mayor and Council – get them to pull the police off our backs!

October 17, 2011 by Source

See inside for contact information for Mayor and Council

By Mike Chek / Special to the OB Rag

Occupy San Diego has lots of friends and supporters. Over this past two week period, they’ve come out with donations and statements of support. This has been great!

But right now – Occupy San Diego NEEDS HELP!

If you support us – then we need you to get on the phone immediately. We need you to call the Mayor of San Diego and the City Council immediately. We need you to tell them – tell them – not ask – to get the police off the backs of the activists of Occupy San Diego!

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This is What Plutocracy Looks Like!

October 17, 2011 by Jim Miller
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While it remains to be seen whether the Occupation of America, from Wall Street to San Diego, will be able to sustain its amazing initial momentum, it has unquestionably struck a nerve and sparked a national discussion about class, power, and politics. The heavy weights at the New York Times have recently staked out an interesting range of opinion on the occupation movement.

You have Paul Krugman, the paper’s reliable progressive, observing the panic of the plutocrats and astutely noting that, “The way to understand all of this is to realize that it’s part of a broader syndrome, in which wealthy Americans who benefit hugely from a system rigged in their favor react with hysteria to anyone who points out just how rigged the system is.”

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The Occupy Movement – at Home and Abroad – a Compilation of Recent Actions

October 16, 2011 by Frank Gormlie
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This past weekend witnessed a dramatic increase of Occupy Wall Street type actions across this country and around the globe. Something like 1500 cities and towns across planet Earth had actions and events on Saturday, October 15th. There were over 100 in the United States. This weekend’s events were also supplemented by the Anti-Austerity and Anti-War demonstrations that coincided with many Occupy actions, as they did here in San Diego.

The Occupy Movement is growing so quickly that activists within can hardly stay up on its developments. So, we’ve put a little something together. This is not an all-inclusive summary but an attempt to hit the high-points.

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California Federation of Teachers Endorses the Occupy Wall Street Movement

October 16, 2011 by Source

Statement of Support

by Josh Pechthalt, the president of California, AFT

The California Federation of Teachers endorses the “Occupy Wall Street” movement. Occupy Wall Street, and its local variations, represent the legitimate response of the 99% of us adversely affected by growing wealth and income inequality in America. The richest one percent of the population has doubled its share of the nation’s income over the past twenty years. Yet during this time the wealthy received massive tax cuts, a major cause of public budget shortfalls that hurt students, make our streets less safe, and harm the health of children and seniors.

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Sunday Schedule for Occupy San Diego: the Occupation of Civic Center Plaza Continues

October 16, 2011 by Frank Gormlie
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After a large peace march down from Balboa Park ended with a rally at the Civic Center Plaza, the occupation of the Plaza continued. Nearly one thousand occupiers and supporters had gathered for the rally at its peak.

Even though police had ordered all sleeping bags to be removed from the Plaza and had banned “illegal lodging” in it as well, about one hundred demonstrators slept in the Plaza last night, Saturday night.

Here is the schedule for Sunday, October 16, 2011, at Occupy San Diego:

11:00 a.m. – Teach-in at Plaza on “structural inequality”

4:00 p.m. – Daily March around the Gaslamp

7:00 p.m. – General Assembly

Come inside for more reports on Occupy San Diego and its offshoots….

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Occupy San Diego UPDATE – October 15 – #OccupySD Intends to Stay

October 15, 2011 by Patty Jones

2:56pm

News from Frank:

Occupy San Diego intends to continue Occupation of Civic Center Plaza!

About 500 people are rallying right now at the San Diego Civic Center Plaza and the general agreement is that they will stay put.

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Officer “Blondie” : The Hammer for the Police Department at Occupy San Diego

October 15, 2011 by Source
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By Mike Chek / Special to the OB Rag

During yesterday’s pepper-spraying and roughing-up of Occupy San Diego demonstrators by San Diego Police, one officer stood out in his duties. Officer “Blondie” (we don’t know his true identify) clearly was The Hammer as officers cleared out tents at the Civic Center Plaza.

The SDPD had ordered all tents to be removed from the Plaza and at 8 am Friday, October 14th, dozens of officers had arrived to enforce that order. And through some minor jostling of non-violent demonstrators who had circled the half dozen tents, the officers did remove the tents.

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Occupy San Diego Schedule for Saturday, October 15th

October 15, 2011 by Frank Gormlie

We just spoke to a member of Occupy San Diego at Civic Center Plaza, and they gave us the following schedule of fun and games for protesters today, Saturday, October 15th – all decided by the most recent General Assembly.

9:30 am – Logistics meeting at the Plaza

11:00 am – Some in Plaza will proceed to the Peace Rally at 6th and Grape.

11 – 12 noon – Peace activists will be bannering above I-5

1:00 pm – Occupy San Diego will march through Balboa Park to the World Beat Center along Park Blvd.

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San Diego’s Freedom Square Attacked by Police – OccupySD

October 14, 2011 by Rocky Neptun
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Handed a printed ultimatum late afternoon Thursday, October 13 to either remove all tents by midnight or get arrested, the 150 Freedom Occupiers at the San Diego Civic Center held a democratic general assembly and decided to peacefully resist the assault on their rights of free speech and assembly.

The occupiers, mostly youth , many of color, had been camped near City Hall since Saturday to proclaim solidarity with the Occupy Wall Street protests nationwide and to begin a movement of youthful confrontation with local injustice.

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Day of Tension and Pepper-spray Ends in Compromise for Occupy San Diego at Civic Center Plaza

October 14, 2011 by Frank Gormlie
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In a tense day marred by two arrests and the pepper-spraying of demonstrators at what remains of the Occupy San Diego encampment at the Civic Center Plaza, it ends in a compromise that allows protesters to sleep one more night in the Plaza in sleeping bags. The compromise does not allow for occupiers to have any tents – except the one that does remain as a symbol of the seven-day occupation.

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UPDATE From Occupy San Diego

October 14, 2011 by Patty Jones
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4:50 pm

Frank reports that about 200 protesters and lots of police are still in the Civic Center Plaza, and right now the protesters are discussing what comes next for the encampment.

There is one tent and a food table still standing in the plaza and police have agreed to leave them in place as a symbol of the Occupy Movement. HOWEVER, they will not be allowed to have sleeping bags or to sleep in the plaza.

Anyone having additional information is encouraged to comment!


6:40 pm

Frank reports that police are allowing protesters to sleep in the plaza, TONIGHT ONLY.

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One Arrest as Police Clear Tents from Occupy San Diego

October 14, 2011 by Frank Gormlie

This morning, October 14th, San Diego Police made one arrest as they cleared tents and other personal property from the Civic Center Plaza where Occupy San Diego protesters have been camped out since last Saturday.

The arrest was of one demonstrator who resisted arrest.

Police had delivered the ultimatum Thursday afternoon, ordering all tents and other equipment to be removed by midnight last night. Hundreds of demonstrators rallied in the late evening, a dozen or so camped out amidst about six tents set up in the middle of the Plaza. Others linked arms and surrounded those willing to be arrested in protest of the removal of their tents. Earlier there had been as many as 100 tents at the site.

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