Saturday, November 19, 2011

This Is Where It's At

Welcome To The New 1967

Police Officer, Davis, CA, Yesterday; Pepper-Spraying #Occupy Protestors In Face

Per Balloon Juice:
[Friday, November 18th] at Occupy Davis, a police officer approached a group of students sitting in a line peacefully on the ground, walked up and down the line and pepper-sprayed them directly in the face—as one would spray pesticide on weeds. What you’ll see in this video is such a callous display of police brutality, I don’t know how this police officer is going to go home and look at himself in the mirror.

As the students cry “Shame on you!” the police arrest a few students; but as the crowd circles them—non-threateningly, but insistent — the police begin to retreat. Then, amazingly, the students ... offer the retreating police a moment of peace:
“We are willing to give you a brief moment of peace so that you may take your weapons and your friends and go. Please do not return.”
And the police do.
It's this simple:

It appears the government of the United States effectively supports the interests of large financial institutions, and of a small percentage of the wealthy as opposed to the majority of the nation's population.

Their answer to the financial crisis is deficit reduction, at the expense of job creation -- which can only end in the curtailment or elimination of the New Deal's compact between America's citizens and government. It would also mean the enforced impoverishment of a majority of The People; while that tiny, wealthy percentage of the population is protected and supported.

The #Occupy movement (and it is one) is in the streets to raise the level of debate on these topics beyond the inbred apathy. They are being ridiculed, demonized, and referred to as dirty hippies, animals, even by the so-called "responsible" media.

And it's been reported that there appears to be an effort on the part of the DHS, and the FBI, to coordinate the activities of police agencies in New York, Oakland, and elsewhere in observing and removing the Occupy encampments -- and that in itself says the movement is being taken seriously. For Government, for either political party, having The People out in the streets is... very inconvenient.

However, they are out there. Nothing more than Business As Usual! seems to be on the minds of the Obama administration, the DNC, or any other part of the Mainstream Left in America, while the Right speaks for itself: Fuck The People.

So, #Occupy is the only political movement directly focused on real issues -- and that's the simple truth. Everything else seems to be pandering, or eyewash; sound bites and posturing. Only direct action on the part of The People seems to be the answer to Business As Usual, since no one else will present one.

And for the Right in America, which could care less about The People, direct action is the only language they understand. Unfortunately, their only response is to up the ante -- to counter nonviolent protest with violent reaction... such as the picture at the top of this post. Law enforcement has become increasingly militarized and even inside commentators agree.

There are a few bright lights in an otherwise dismal landscape: Look at Wisconsin, where voters have found their voice; radical Republicans in the state legislature have been recalled, and 58% of polled voters (including Republicans) want Governor Scott Walker recalled as well. Look at the beginnings of Elizabeth Warren's campaign; no punches pulled.

And, there's #Occupy. At a bare minimum, people watching on the sidelines have to admit that they're willing to endure physical hardship and public opprobrium, even pepper-spraying and arrest, to make a serious point. They're willing to get involved.

What are you doing? Or, don't you think the situation is serious enough?

MEHR: The Los Angeles Times:
The chancellor of U.C. Davis announced Saturday that she will form a task force to investigate the pepper-spraying of Occupy Davis protesters by campus police this week.

An officer’s spraying of the sitting students, who had locked arms, Friday afternoon in an attempt to clear the last of an Occupy encampment was captured on video and uploaded to YouTube and other social media sites.
...might have something to do with this:
The Faculty Association at the University of California, Davis, is calling for the resignation of chancellor Linda Katehi after a YouTube video surfaced showing police pepper spraying passive Occupy Wall Street protesters.

“The Chancellor’s authorization of the use of police force to suppress the protests by students and community members speaking out on behalf of our university and public higher education generally represents a gross failure of leadership,” the Davis Faculty Association wrote in a blog post on Saturday.

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