The OccuChi-er

Oakland PD Emails Reveal Oakland’s Determination To Keep Library Vacant

September 6, 2012
Biblioteca Popular Victor Martinez

Biblioteca Popular Victor Martinez

The Occupied Oakland Tribune just posted documents obtained as a result of a FOIA request about the People’s Library (properly known as the Biblioteca Popular Victor Martinez).  This is only a partial response to the request, but already reveals quite a bit of interesting information.

If you missed the story, activists and community members in Oakland took over an abandoned library building, formerly a drug den, and cleaned it up.  They filled the shelves with donated books and began planting a community garden outside.  They held a potluck and a poetry reading.  A Twitter account and Facebook page were set up to share the action with the world.  It was the embodiment of what we aim to do – reclaim public space and put it back into use to serve our communities.  It was beautiful.


A Visit to the NATO 5

July 31, 2012
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Free the NATO 5

Free the NATO 5

For someone who’s never been arrested, I sure spend a lot of time at Cook County Jail lately.

As part of Occupy Chicago’s ongoing jail solidarity effort for the NATO 5, who are facing terrorism charges, I have been attending as many court dates as my schedule allows.  Most of these court dates are just for updates, or to set new court dates, but being there is an important show of support.  At the first few I attended we pushed our luck a bit by standing and raising fists in solidarity, so much so that the judge has taken to reading a decorum order before calling any of their cases.  He claims it’s not really aimed at us, just meant as a point of information for “people who only know about court from TV,” but since it uses words like “conduct of solidarity” and “protest,” I tend to take it personally.

Here’s what a NATO 5 court decorum order looks like:

All persons in the courtroom must remain silent during all proceedings. There will be no talking, noise making, standing, kneeling, waving, hand raising or other conduct of solidarity, camaraderie, protest, approval or disapproval in the courtroom or in the hallway outside the courtroom.


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