Valentine’s Day: some people love the romance, others decry it as an obligatory expression of love or lament the misery of being single on a day devoted to coupledom. If being single on February 14 seems unbearable, imagine if you were not just alone but locked away from everything — your family, your friends, the outside world.
|By: Kit OConnell Saturday January 12, 2013 9:08 am|
We have entered an age of protest. Social media tools allow new ways to mobilize activists into public and private spaces and also provide new avenues for amplifying their actions. The Internet, when used properly, can drive activists to an action — or a worldwide coalition of actions — and then make sure thousands more people see and hear about them after. Using simple tools like hashtags, we can monitor the response to actions in real time in a way never possible before.
|By: Remington Alessi Thursday December 13, 2012 6:30 pm|
A year ago, I was arrested and put in jail, shivering, coughing, and frightened, and worried that I would miss a statistics exam. It’s funny to think about, because the past year has rushed by so quickly that I didn’t even realize it had been a full year until I logged onto Facebook and read a fellow occupier’s post.
Looking back, it’s been a wild ride.
|By: Kit OConnell Wednesday December 12, 2012 7:15 pm|
One year ago today, Occupy Oakland declared a National Day of Action against Goldman-Sachs.
The action would center on the Port of Oakland, which they shut down for over two days. Solidarity actions around the country took place at other ports, at Walmart distribution centers, and Goldman-Sachs offices in New York City.
About 200 occupiers from around Texas gathered at Occupy Houston’s encampment, Tranquility Park, and from there traveled to the Port of Houston where we blockaded the main entrance. There were twenty arrests.
|By: Kit OConnell Thursday December 6, 2012 7:16 pm|
On November 16, Richard Estes interviewed me on his KDVS program Speaking In Tongues about Burning Man and the recent suicide of Paul Addis. This is part 2 of the interview, in which we talk more about the effects of police and pranksters on countercultures and activist movements.
|By: Kit OConnell Saturday December 1, 2012 12:20 pm|
On November 16, Richard Estes interviewed me on his KDVS program Speaking In Tongues about Burning Man and the recent suicide of Paul Addis. Burning Man centers around an annual festival in a temporary desert city that surrounds a human effigy. This effigy is ritually burned on Saturday night of the week-long event, but Addis was jailed for setting fire to it on the Monday before its scheduled destruction.
|By: Kit OConnell Thursday November 8, 2012 4:01 pm|
Since the Occupy movement began, many have attempted to position the group in opposition to electoral politics. Occupy in its purest form is nonpartisan, and since the beginning of the movement this has been a source of criticism.
If we want to really make a difference, we were told time and again, we should organize similarly to the Tea Party and begin to field candidates for office. When occupiers protested Mitt Romney or other hyper-conservative politicians, they’d be accused of being in bed with Barack Obama. If the movement protested neo-liberals like Obama, we were accused of being traitors to all that was good in the world because we obviously wanted Romney to win (Carnacing is not limited to blogs). Most of all, occupiers got accused of being disconnected from what their critics perceive to be real politics — we were lazy hippies who didn’t understand how the world works and worst of all we don’t vote.
|By: Kit OConnell Thursday October 11, 2012 5:17 pm|
On Saturday, October 6, a week of events and direct action celebrating Occupy Austin’s 1st birthday culminated on its official anniversary with an attempt to reoccupy space; the goal was to create a new transitional encampment for those without homes in a city which has criminalized their existence.
The day began with a March Against Hate to protest a hate crime on Pride weekend (previously mentioned on myFDL). Occupy Austin, in addition to joining the march, lent our portable sound system to the community for use at the Texas State Capitol, then danced along the sidewalks on the way back to Austin City Hall for our Popular Assembly.
|By: Kevin Gosztola Sunday September 16, 2012 4:00 pm|
To anyone following the policing of the Occupy movement closely, this has become typical of the NYPD: heavy-handed policing, intimidation, harassment and arbitrary arrests that clearly violate the rights of individuals engaged in First Amendment-protected activity.
|By: Kit OConnell Saturday September 15, 2012 12:00 pm|
The pre-trial hearings for the Gulf Port 7 case continued on September 6, 2012; although the Austin Police Department presented the information Judge Joan Campbell requested at the previous hearing, most of it was done in camera — in private, where defense and accused activists could not access it. What was revealed is troubling — that APD coordinated the day’s actions with Houston police through the local Texas fusion center, known as Austin Regional Intelligence Center. This, of course, raises the question of to what degree federal authorities were involved in the entrapment of Occupy activists.