On Saturday, December 10, Occupy groups all over the world marked International Human Rights Day with rallies, marches and other actions. The groups demonstrated for a “global civil society” that is not based on power but rather human values.
As the Occupy Together website stated:
The struggle for our rights as human beings underlies everything we have demanded in every square and every demonstration in this historic year of global change. From East to West, North to South: on the 10th of December we will take to the streets and squares together to demand the fundamental principles that were promised and are inherent to Human Beings.
Peter Tatchell, a known activist who has boldly campaigned for civil liberties, gay rights, racial equality and democracy, addressed Occupy London.
Occupy Honolulu marched into the lobby of a Hyatt Regency Hotel in Waikiki and called Hyatt “one of the most abusive employers in the hotel industry.”
Occupy Providence called attention to homelessness and camped out in front of the statehouse. Gov. Lincoln Chafee and the group negotiated ahead of time so the symbolic protest could take place.
In New York, parents and kids joined Occupy Wall Street to condemn NYPD commissioner Raymond Kelly and Mayor Michael Bloomberg for being “bullies.” DNAinfo reported:
“Parents and kids are getting together to remind the mayor that bullying is not nice,” spokeswoman for Parents for Occupy Wall Street Liesbeth Rapp said. “It’s confusing for the children to see the people they think are supposed to be protecting them doing this.”
Occupy LA participants held an action to call attention to the National Defense Authorization Act and how it would violate human rights.
And in San Francisco, Occupy SF gathered at the amphitheater in Justin Herman Plaza, where the occupation was evicted days ago, and heard testimony from Burmese and Tibetan activists. Then they marched to Union Square for a rally. (They also marched past Occupy SF participants in front of the Federal Reserve.)
At 4 am, hours after Occupy SF rallied for human rights, riot police showed up to evict occupiers from the space they were holding in front of the Federal Reserve. Fifty-five were arrested on charges of “illegal lodging.” Police complained of occupiers pushing and spitting on them. And, there of course is no way to verify that what they are saying actually happened or not (plus “pushing” could mean riot police came in and shoved on people and an occupier fell on an officer and that officer didn’t like having an occupier enter his zone so he remembered it for the police report).
Firedoglake’s premier live blog continues now. Here is a Twitter list for updates. Send any reports on International Human Rights Day actions that were not mentioned in the introduction or news tips, questions or updates to firstname.lastname@example.org. And, as always, all times are EST.
10:49 PM Occupy LA will setup a picket line with others at the SSA Marine Terminal in Long Beach as part of the West Coast port shutdown day of action tomorrow.
10:48 PM First Occupy convention: “The People’s Convention” was held in Florida over the weekend. The Orlando-Sentinel reports.
7:21 PM ACLU, NLG statement on their work to defend Occupy Boston
6:51 PM Guardian story on undercover cops at Occupy LA
6:50 PM This article on Occupy Boston and the police is very interesting. While I think the corporate Boston Globe is doing what corporate media has done when covering protests for the past decades—focusing on the law-and-order narrative, it is hard for me to disagree with much of it. I have no reason to believe that Menino and Davis did not have police do the things they say they did so Boston Police did not attract the same kind of negative attention that New York Police and Oakland Police have attracted.
Now, police did prevent Occupy Boston from bringing in building materials, tents and then, on the final day, food. They threatened to arrest an 84-year-old woman who tried to deliver ziti to the occupation. But they were fair and most of the time respectful toward protesters. I witnessed this firsthand.
There were no public safety or health risks that Occupy Boston posed. I don’t think any legitimately existed. That was, as in other cities, a pretext to evict the camp. And, if anyone is to blame for the occupation being gone, it is Mayor Thomas Menino, who could have found a way to let them remain. It is not like letting them stay was politically unpopular. Many were coming down to Dewey Square to see the encampment.
6:15 PM Occupy Oakland held a press conference on plans for the West Coast port shutdown action happening tomorrow. A CBS-5 cameraman showed up and when trying to get a position to film the press conference got into it with a female reporter. He called the female reporter a “bitch” and a “cunt.” More on this story, including video of this corporate news cameraman using sexist epithets, here.
The slurs are revealing. More revealing though is how a KTYVU cameraman steps in and defends the CBS-5 cameraman and seems to threaten Occupy Oakland with leaving if he can’t get the positioning he wants to film. As Bay Area Indymedia says, it is “as if the KTVU cameraman was there as a personal favor to Occupy Oakland or the West Coast Port Blockade and was not being paid for shooting video of the press conference.”
3:33 PM Occupy Pittsburgh faces eviction from a bank that will go to court Monday to get them removed.
3:30 PM Iconic photos of Occupy Wall Street
3:20 PM NYPD relations with press were poor before Occupy Wall Street
12:50 PM Laurie Penny (aka @PennyRed) has a new column up titled, “Blaming the Victim,” about the 1 percent punishing people for wanting what they can’t have. She gets into the issue of women wanting to speak out and specifically writes about the female Occupy Melbourne protester, who was stripped by police.
…For anyone who ever doubted, for those who continue to doubt that women’s liberation and the fight for socio-economic justice are part of the same struggle against complicity and complacency. Dare to speak your mind? Dare to make trouble? Dare to wear a short skirt, a hoodie, a bandana, a placard, an ingenious costume in the shape of a tent? Well then, you deserve to be hurt and humiliated. You deserve to be frightened and bullied and beaten. Sit down, shut up. Get a job and work till you drop like the rest of us, and if you can’t get a job then get on your belly and beg like the rest of us. You deserve it. You asked for it, by daring to make your desires known, by showing your anger, showing your heart, showing your skin. Be quiet and do as you are fucking told. Bitch. Scrounger. Benefit scum. Hippy. Whore.
12:30 PM December 16th & 17th there will be actions that not only mark the third-month anniversary of Occupy Wall Street but which also support Bradley Manning, whose pre-trial hearing will be beginning.
Before Occupy Wall Street, I extensively covered WikiLeaks. On December 16 & 17th, the two stories will officially converge. For a period, I will be able to write about WikiLeaks & Occupy and I won’t be reaching. Occupy Wall Street approved funding for the WikiLeaks Truck Working Group to take a group of occupiers to Ft. Meade, Maryland, and they will be joining Occupy DC and others for a rally & a march.
12:20 PM Ustream personality PunkBoyinSF snags an interview with Reverend Billy
12:15 PM The West Coast occupations gear up to participate in Port Shutdown Action on December 12. Military veterans have now announced their support. And here are interviews with two members of ILWU on the planned action.
12:10 PM I’ve been starting the live blog each day with some holiday music. Today’s song is by Marvin & Johnny and is called “It’s Christmas.”