May Day Update:
Today the world rallies. The media (over)used Zuccotti Park as a symbol of Occupy Wall Street. They centered all the hype on that one focal point. When Zuccotti was evicted, it made it easy for the media to pretend the movement was over. In reality, the movement is everywhere, small towns around the world are still going strong.
Almost half a year after the media “killed the story” we revive the ancient tradition of “May Day” to demonstrate our continued resolve to challenge the bullshit. To state we really don’t give a fuck how we are misrepresented and marginalized: we refuse be complicit in rule by fear. We aren’t afraid.
The removal of the spotlight from Occupy has enabled the police to apply suppressive tactics without the media blowback. The harsh, oppressive suppression has been ongoing but uncovered during the past months, causing Occupy to go underground. Today this oppression meets a renewed thrust into the open by Occupy protestors.
It is not surprising that violence has occurred. Epicenters of the struggle in Seattle and Oakland have received media attention. But the oppression is almost as global as the Occupy movement itself. This video, choppy though it is, clearly shows undercover police involved in an altercation with peaceful protestors in the Netherlands, a country that could until recently claim to promote tolerance, while keeping a straight face. The police are attempting to force the protestors in a direction where they are being beaten and detained.
Our protests need to be oppressed. They are too contagious to be tolerated. Too many of us are sick of a system based on fear, of belonging to a destructive species, and are so eager to start building on new paradigms. The Occupy movement is the signal so many of us have been waiting for. Since Zuccotti Park was cowardly evicted in the middle of the night, the movement hasn’t been allowed to recapture the spotlight. Mayday is no different. But Mayday isn’t about capturing the spotlight of the corporate media, it’s about signaling our solidarity. We don’t need the corporate media – nor can we afford to rely on it – we are creating our own media: theglobalsquare.org
Not only do we not need the corporate media, we don’t need a lot of the corporate nonsense, particularly the poisonous corporate “food”.
Stay tuned for International Permaculture day coming up on May 6th! permacultureday.info
Vandalism in Seattle:
What happens after an Occupy encampment is broken up? When the freedom to Occupy a given space is revoked – what immutable messages remain?
Too many messages for one person to describe. The inability of the Occupy movement to “describe what it stands for” or “align itself politically” hasn’t been a weakness at all, but rather a strength. The real threat to the movement lies in the attempts to define it. Even the most well intending, by seeking to describe Occupy, co-opt it’s essence. The most malignant attempts to co-opt the movement have come from those who actions are being protested, including Obama himself.
We have witnessed a shockingly wide range of both beautiful and ugly things the past few months: the beauty of people fighting for love, and the ugliness of people attacking each other. Some of the more beautiful thing are the demonstrations of environmental self sufficiency by sustainability experts, often utilizing principles developed by the Permaculture movement. They showed that the movement could become very self sufficient in a short amount of time.
Beauty is abundant in the eloquence of countless people demanding justice, and accountability for what is happening in the world with money, and the environment – and with people and voicing a desire to be non-violent: to restructure society – towards the love and away from fear.
Loud and clear, the Occupy movement has announced itself.
“Rise like Lions after slumber
In unvanquishable number –
Shake your chains to earth like dew
Which in sleep had fallen on you –
Ye are many – they are few.”
Percy B Shelley 1819
Time to start Chapter two! Today (November 17th) marks the beginning of the second round of global protest, after October 15th. Part of this is in response to the cowardly attack in the middle of the night against the Zuccotti encampment: roarmag.org
It has been spectacular to watch people around the world stand up for their rights in 2011. The big question in my mind, was when Americans would start to manifest against the oppression and corruption in the US. On September 17th 2011, it turns out.
The importance of protest in the US is immeasurable. The US is able to influence all other countries, affecting their ability to practice democracy: if there is no democracy in the US, there won’t be democracy anywhere.
The incredibly brave first wave of protest helped prove it can be done, that there is hope. Even when their efforts were blacked out of the main stream media completely, they fought on, with love, and the gesture has inspired millions. It took the shock of violence against peaceful protestors to jump start the media, but now the movement can no longer be ignored. Hope is growing, as more and more people around the world join the movement and organize to occupy their own cities. 82 countries have joined, in over 1000 cities. The message could not be more clear: we are not alone! We are feeding each other with love. This is what it is to be alive!
In part, this blog is my apology. I am sorry I lost faith something like this was possible. I am sorry I gave up hope, and felt overwhelmed by the staggering power of our oppressors. I am sorry I had the arrogance to think I was alone. This blog is also my thank you. OWS, you have restored my faith in America, in humanity, in myself. You have reminded me of something even bigger than Democracy or economic justice or social equality, you have reminded me of the ability of love to unlock our infinite power. Thank you, for revealing my fears to be what they are, just fears. Thank you, for awakening my heart. There is so much to be done. Thank you for uniting us, so we can get started.