Thursday, October 13, 2011

Occupy Wall Street - What to Expect if Bloomberg Acts

From Kian at Flashmobs4Jobs, a 99er who's part of the 99%.

New York Mayor Bloomberg will effectively evict the Occupy Wall Street protesters from their home in Zuccotti Park. Mayor Bloomberg just said he's going to use the police to effectively end the occupation of Wall Street tomorrow morning.

If they go through with this nonsense of clearing the park, IMO, there will definitely be arrests. I don't want to discourage anyone from going, not at all, but we should all know what we are getting into. It will be a bit different than the last time because of the antagonistic climate NYC Mayor Bloomberg has created (with the help of his girlfriend). There will be no friendly joking between you and the police on this one!

Simply put, the more of us there are, the less they will do. Before they give the final order to physically remove us, they will assess the likelihood for success. If we outnumber them in huge numbers, they will back down. Anyone who went to the huge anti-war marches back in the day has experienced this. Bloomberg made the same threats and declarations that we would be penned in and not allowed to march in the street; and promptly arrested if we tried. Of course, it was a peaceful march in that many of thousands and we took to the streets from Lexington east to the river. The cops were so outnumbered that trying to stop us threatened their safety. While there were certainly incidents, and they tried to block us on the cross streets -- but overall, we won.

I encourage anyone who can, to just get there. Don't be afraid. You can stand outside the park and show support without getting arrested - though the cops may move you. You can be inside the park and leave when they give the warning, but I wouldn't advise that if you really want to avoid arrest. It is easy to be swept up. OWS is working with lawyers already, so we should be fine. We'll be going down around midnight; I am pretty sure they won't wait until the morning when there are more people. I expect the press will be there at some point, so that's good; hope it's before the cops move.

Again, the more of us, the less they can do. Your fear is their only weapon. Don't be afraid - be part of history and the change we all need. Unfortunately, that change has only ever happened one way in this this. Imagine how scared the revolutionary war fighters were. They went up against a whole empire; this is just Bloomberg and his cop brass.

Hope to see you there. (Tips below)

A few tips, if this is new to you:


2. Do NOT get arrested if you have parking tickets - they will hold you until you pay them. And, obviously if you have any outstanding warrants or are undocumented.

3. If a cop tells you that you are under arrest, ask what the charge is (don't expect a clear answer, but you asked). Also ask what precinct s/ he is from, and what precinct you are going to (the cop may/may not tell you). If they search your body at all, it must be done by same sex cop. They usually do this, but if not, demand one.

4. KEEP YOUR HANDS VISIBLE at all times during the encounter/arrest. Cops fear the unknown; just like on the train, you never know who the crazy one with the gun is. This is how they think. The calmer you are, the calmer they will should be.

5. DON'T GO LIMP, as some of the others might - in New York State, this is considered resisting arrest, a charge to avoid if possible (not the end of the world, but your chances of having the charges dismissed or reduced to a misdemeanor or simple violation are better without resisting).

6. Don't allow yourself to be provoked - if someone near you is being hit or mistreated by a cop, DON'T INTERVENE, even though that is your natural instinct. Others will do that and, sadly, events like this are chock full of agent provocateurs, there to incite the crowd so the cops can do what they want and blame us for the violence. You are better off getting a description, the badge number, name and precinct of the cop (from the insignias on his lapel and other pins/badges), and remembering what you can as a witness. Write a few details down as soon as possible. Cops have been known to switch badges before these kinds of events, so don't forget to note a physical description; take a picture if you can.

7. Comply with the Officer, but don't be afraid to tell him the handcuffs are too tight. They love slapping those things on, and often pull the plastic ones too tight (though Yvonne had a very different experience!).

8. DO NOT BRING ANYTHING that could be construed as a weapon; they especially look for knife-type things, including a nail clipper, and also mace.
In general, the less you have on you, the better. It will speed your processing and get you out faster. Ladies, clean out your purse beforehand!

9. Be prepared to be in custody for awhile. Bring a bottle of water and a few granola bars. Also, wear layered clothing, especially a sweater. Sometimes they take your coat.

10. If you have medicine you have to take, bring it in the prescription bottle with your name on it, otherwise they will keep you until they determine what it is.

11. Don't eat anything poppy seed before you go. If they drug test you, you could test positive for heroin, especially if you are [lucky enough] to be light weight.

12. If they want to question you, you can answer them, but that doesn't mean they will let you go sooner, despite their promises. Best advice, IMHO, say you want a lawyer. They will threaten you with prison, the death penalty, anything. Stick to your guns. They will hold you until arraignment the next day, where you'll get a lawyer. With mass arrests, though, I doubt you'll be hauled in for harsh questioning. They know we aren't terrorists, even if they wish we were (cops hate protesters because they usually think we aren't real crime - and they're right!).

13. Get your arresting officers' name you and the precinct where you are. And remember that, unless you get a stupid one or a rookie, most of them are just doing their job, though it would be awesome if they would refuse to arrest us!! If you go to court, the officer may have to appear and their general impression of you is important. Nothing wrong with having a friendly encounter, if possible.

Hope this is helpful........and, sorry, but I hope you have an opportunity to use this advice ;-)

And I would like to out for the "white shirts" like this guy > Crazy Baton-Swinging NYPD Lieutenant Brian Connolly

The Washington Post - With no end in sight, the cost of constant police surveillance will continue to rise at a time when Mayor Michael Bloomberg has ordered citywide budget cuts. "We are down 6,000 police officers from where we were 10 years ago, so it's difficult to do any type of protracted operation with people who are working in their regular tour of duty."

1 comment:

  1. Tonight I went to Occupy Wall Street to deliver the signatures of more than 240,000 people—including you—who signed our emergency petition asking Mayor Bloomberg not to evict the Occupy Wall Street protesters from Zuccotti Park tomorrow.

    We held a huge press conference at the park with dozens of news outlets, and then hundreds people marched up Broadway to City Hall to deliver the petition.

    When they found out Mayor Bloomberg was busy dining with the 1% a few blocks away at the ultra-luxurious Cipriani, the march continued to the doors of the restaurant.

    It was a strong show of nationwide solidarity, numerous local elected officials joined our march to oppose Bloomberg's decision, and MSNBC's Lawrence O'Donnell even featured the petition tonight. As of right now, however, Bloomberg's order to clear Zuccotti Park still stands and we won't know until tomorrow morning what he's going to do.

    But regardless of Mayor Bloomberg's actions, the most important thing any of us can do is to make sure this movement keeps growing by supporting a local Occupy event in our town.

    Here's a great map listing of tons of Occupy events all over the country that our friends at DailyKos put together:

    As we wait to see what happens in New York tomorrow, I hope you'll find the event closest to you and go there to show your solidarity.

    Thanks for all you do.

    Daniel, Tate, Peter, Elena, and the rest of the team at MOveOn