Friday, December 23, 2011

SF Raid - Since when is it legal to do this? SF RAID & PICS 12.8.11

So I'm on my way to general assembly at Occupy Oakland when I get a text from Cdub510 that it was "going down" on PunkBoyInSF's ustream. It was at that point that I decided to go see what all the commotion was about. After all, it was only about 6pm so the public space occupied by the SF encampment was surely open. Now, on December 8th the San Francisco police department raided the general assembly for Occupy SF. This was organized police action that was in direct violation of the 1st amendment. Even more so than some previous attacks. Here is why:
 The General Assembly was being held at 6pm. The public space was open, and the police showed up using school yard bully tactics and just saying the space was closed. There was no documentation supporting this until later in the evening when a sign showed up. 
Now why was this the tactic used? Why were people sitting in the middle being held hostage basically after being assaulted for traveling freely within this country and peaceable assembling for a redress of grievances with their government by starting problem solving direct democratic tactics in a public space?

Previous attacks had been later in the evening for almost all Occupy encampments in the area, however there was no encampment here. Not at least until the police came and started encroaching on free speech rights. Then tents started popping up and more and more people decided to stay. I'd like to take a moment for all the law enforcement who are more than likely looking at my blog and say that if you keep fighting against Occupy, you're fighting against those who are looking out for your interests. When your pensions are sliced up to nothing remember that you have successfully oppressed those who were fighting for your rights. Those who pay taxes for the services that you have decided to no longer provide to the people, but instead have chosen to protect the 1%. I wonder if Occupy had a stage in because police pensions were being attacked, would the police literally attack the protesters? Would that protest go smoothly and that particular encampment be allowed to stay with actual assistance? Would that be what was needed to solidify the bridge between the police who are the 99% but not fighting with the 99%?

SF Fire Dept. had to break through the police line to get the injured person out
Anyway... I was very upset once I had realized that the man who was injured after being assaulted by SFPD had not received any medical attention after convulsing on the ground for several minutes. The police even went as far as to turn away two ambulances that came to the scene called by other Occupiers standing nearby. The police are not medics and thus they are not qualified to totally assess someones medical condition ESPECIALLY if they are bleeding from the head and convulsing. It is my opinion that the man could have died because of the police departments lack of good judgement. Eventually the SF Fire Department came out and approached the police officers blocking access to the injured protester. They were turned away and walked back to discuss how to handle the situation. After about 3 minutes of speaking with each other (picture to right) the fire department decided to head in and get the person who needed medical assistance. While the fire department were talking many individuals standing near by were shouting at them to go in and help the man who was injured. By this time people were clearly upset at the fact that someone had been denied medical attention. Many people (including myself) were very happy and cheered once the fire department went in. I'm sure the police department did not appreciate having their line broken, but I'm glad that it happened because it needed to. The police were the most dangerous individuals there that evening. They were the only ones breaking Constitutional Law, to the point where someone was hurt; and regardless of the fact that the police are traditionally supposed to be a very honorable position where you are paid by SOCIETY to PROTECT & SERVE! Not beat and harass and break the very laws in which you are supposed to be upholding while oppressing those you are supposed to be protecting.

There were many individuals who came out in support, and after the fire department went to properly assess the medical condition they had to come back to their truck and get a stretcher to get the protester on. So apologetic about not knowing his name. However, it's only confirming the fact that the police were not adequately trained to assess the medical condition of a "suspect" and they should be held responsible. Not to mention that he was attacked while within his rights. I'm quite sure that he would not have been brought out on a stretcher by the fire department if nothing was wrong with him. Also for some reason (I'm really not sure what crime he actually committed) but he needed to be escorted by an officer in the fire department ambulance to make sure that once he received the medical attention he obviously needed but was being denied that he could still go to jail for no reason.

It was disheartening to see the police allow a man to lay there and deny him help. I know that this is a bit redundant but even as I type this blog I just can't get over it. I could have sworn the police were supposed to protect and serve the community not hurt us. What is this world coming to? When did we as citizens stop holding the police department accountable for their job. I can't get a police officer to help me if I'm locked out of my car at 3am or if my Mother calls when someone is attempting to break in her house while she is home at midnight, so I'm wondering who exactly are the police departments protecting and why are we funneling so much money into the system as if it's been helping anything. Look to cities like Oakland CA where no matter how much money is poured into policing, the murder rate never drops below 100 and crime is never low. This is an injustice within itself that needs to be rectified and it's not going to happen unless we stand up as a people and start to hold our representatives and our government accountable. Occupy is doing that by pointing out the major ways in which our government continues to fail society while somehow still managing to make a profit. Something has got to stop!

The only part that wasn't totally saddening was the fact that so many people had showed up to brave the cold and continue to be there and take pictures, protest and stream what was happening. I'm glad to know that more and more of our communities are waking up to the injustice that has been happening right in front of all of our eyes and with some of our approval either through the action of inaction or not being properly educated on certain things before supporting/voting on them. I'm glad to know that there could possibly be some REAL change. You know the kind the President Obama talked about during his campaign but has seem to have forgotten after he was elected. The kind that reinforces the Constitution and brings us back to some sort of Communal prosperity. Building America back up by starting with the ENTIRE working class who have been left abandoned by those we have voted for and lost hope in. I'm not a professional, but I am a human and I know right from wrong. A lot of what's been happening recently on behalf of government against Occupy has been plain wrong in the basic way that we all learned about in grade school. Not having respect for one another is a big one, because of the separation that we have been programmed to believe it exists so much that we create it as well. We need to decolonize our minds and then we wouldn't feel the need to excessively police each other.

The night proved to be bigger than I thought. For some reason the bike brigade came out. I had no idea then or even now why they were needed. It seemed to be a show on;y because the only time I ever saw the police get off the bike was to go inside the Hyatt and eat food. Makes me wonder exactly how much of the tax payers dollars was wasted on this spectacle to make it seem like something was being done. As a matter of fact while I was walking by and streaming this grand entrance many of the motorcycle police flashed their high beams at me in an attempt to make me stop filming. Why was that necessary? Notice again, the school yard bully mentality from SFPD which seems to be share by their brothers OPD.

I keep wondering to myself how the strategies the police department utilize are developed. This question entered my mind once I saw all of the officers who were hell bent on putting an "unbreakable" perimeter around the perfectly Constitutional gathering, so much so that they were denying medical attention to a gentlemen that was so injured by the SFPD that he needed to be brought out on a stretcher, just decided to line up all perfect like and march around the corner to hang out and waste hard earned tax payers dollars on encroaching upon our Constitutionally protected rights. At what point is enough going to really be enough? When will this blatant abuse of our rights be enough to get the community more involved? Seriously, take a look at how much of an increase in funding for police services there has been in your city and then think about the decrease in crime. Excessive policing is not the answer to social problems.


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