Months ago, District Attorney Nancy O’Malley, in collusion with Mayor Jean Quan’s office and the direction of Deanna Santana, began a series of strategies designed to silence free speech—that is, from their perspective, the wrong kinds of speech directed at powerful local actors. As a recent dump of emails show, Quan was quite keen to explore ways of co-opting the Occupy Oakland movement when she thought the message was directed impotently at far away targets in Washington and Wall Street, even going as far as commissioning a series of “initiatives” that would make her seem aligned with the movement’s goals, and empowering operatives to co-opt the movement’s message [p. 1058]. When the Mayor and City Hall discovered that they would not be able to ride the Occupy Oakland train to cynical political gain, an ugly series of tactics were arrayed to chill free speech and intimidate protesters. These culminated in violent raids that nearly took the lives of two activists. These are well-known, but the violence and repression from police and city designed to suppress the Occupy Oakland movement did not stop there. Read more.
- Three Oakland occupiers have been given ludicrous charges, including hate crime, for a recent demonstration at a bank. Although the bail amount varies with each of the occupiers and is seemingly fluctuating, it has been set as high as $1 million for one of the arrestees. Donations are being requested to help bail out at least one occupier (with the lowest bail).
- Around a dozen demonstrators involved in OccupyCal last fall have now been charged by the Alameda County DA for their actions during the statewide education demonstrations on November 9th. Read more.