RSN Fundraising Banner
FB Share
Email This Page
add comment
Print

Lee reports: "Although the city is allowing employees to participate in the strike that Occupy Oakland has called for Wednesday, the union said, all officers have been ordered to work that day, even if they had previously had the day off. 'That's hundreds of city workers encouraged to take off work to participate in the protest against "the establishment,"' said the union, which represents 645 officers. 'But aren't the mayor and her administration part of the establishment they are paying city employees to protest? Is it the city's intention to have city employees on both sides of a skirmish line?'"

Oakland Police officers strike a defensive position after attacking protesters with truncheons, 10/25/11. (photo: Marc Ash/RSN)
Oakland Police officers strike a defensive position after attacking protesters with truncheons, 10/25/11. (photo: Marc Ash/RSN)



Oakland Mayor, Police Clash Over General Strike

By Henry K. Lee, San Francisco Chronicle

01 November 11

 

Occupy Wall Street: Take the Bull by the Horns

 

he Oakland police union released a statement today saying its officers are confused about Mayor Jean Quan's stance on the Occupy Oakland encampment and what they are being asked to do for Wednesday's citywide general strike.

A legion of Oakland officers and those from 17 outside agencies were asked to remove the Occupy Oakland campers early Oct. 25 from Frank Ogawa Plaza outside City Hall, but Quan allowed protesters to return starting the next day, the union's "open letter to the citizens of Oakland" noted. The encampment is now about as large as before the police sweep.

"We, too, are the 99 percent fighting for better working conditions, fair treatment and the ability to provide a living for our children and families," the Oakland Police Officers' Association statement said. "We are severely understaffed with many city beats remaining unprotected by police during the day and evening hours.

"As your police officers, we are confused."

Although the city is allowing employees to participate in the strike that Occupy Oakland has called for Wednesday, the union said, all officers have been ordered to work that day, even if they had previously had the day off.

"That's hundreds of city workers encouraged to take off work to participate in the protest against 'the establishment,' " said the union, which represents 645 officers. "But aren't the mayor and her administration part of the establishment they are paying city employees to protest? Is it the city's intention to have city employees on both sides of a skirmish line?"

The union's president, Sgt. Dom Arotzarena, said, "There is no clear mission here. The mayor is painting this picture that we're the bad guy. We're just doing our jobs, carrying out her orders, and we need some big leadership now."

Quan was out of town when the police raid occurred and said shortly afterward that she had been briefed on the planned action but hadn't known when it would take place.

The early morning raid was followed 12 hours later by a protest in which police who had been hit by paint and other objects fired tear gas at a crowd of several hundred protesters at 14th Street and Broadway.

Quan said she regretted "the outcome," which included the injury of Iraq war veteran Scott Olsen after officers fired crowd-control projectiles.

e-max.it: your social media marketing partner
 

Comments   

A note of caution regarding our comment sections:

For months a stream of media reports have warned of coordinated propaganda efforts targeting political websites based in the U.S., particularly in the run-up to the 2016 presidential election.

We too were alarmed at the patterns we were, and still are, seeing. It is clear that the provocateurs are far more savvy, disciplined, and purposeful than anything we have ever experienced before.

It is also clear that we still have elements of the same activity in our article discussion forums at this time.

We have hosted and encouraged reader expression since the turn of the century. The comments of our readers are the most vibrant, best-used interactive feature at Reader Supported News. Accordingly, we are strongly resistant to interrupting those services.

It is, however, important to note that in all likelihood hardened operatives are attempting to shape the dialog our community seeks to engage in.

Adapt and overcome.

Marc Ash
Founder, Reader Supported News

 
+46 # Cliffard 2011-11-01 17:33
Hmmm, Isn't a strike when you don't show up even if you're supposed to.
 
 
+65 # wwway 2011-11-01 17:51
The 99% need to shut everything down for 48hours. For 2 days folks can have pot lucks in the streets with their neighbors so they can get to know and depend upon each other again.
 
 
+10 # John Locke 2011-11-02 08:06
the 99% should shut everything down for a full week or longer until the 1% falls to their knees, the 99% control everything, the 1% knows they need us, lets show them how much by everyone across the nation shutting down the system by refusing to shop or go to work, let the 1% do it all if they can, watch how fast everything will change after that... shut down the system!
 
 
+32 # seeuingoa 2011-11-01 18:09
Don´t talk about just following orders!

That´s what Eichmann did.

(google him!)
 
 
+30 # seeuingoa 2011-11-01 18:15
the problem with policemen is that
they take too many orders.

COME ON!
WAKE UP!

start thinking your selves.
 
 
+29 # jerryball 2011-11-01 18:21
"We, too, are the 99 percent fighting for better working conditions, fair treatment and the ability to provide a living for our children and families," the Oakland Police Officers' Association statement said.

WTF? I didn't see any police being manhandled, shot with rubber bullets, etc. because they were the perpetrators, not the protesters. So which way are they going to have it? Sounds as if they are more than just confused.
 
 
+6 # John Locke 2011-11-02 08:07
yes it does,
 
 
+16 # seeuingoa 2011-11-01 18:21
What about an "occupy White House"
continuation of the present movement???

A circle of people around the White House
holding hands for as long as it takes.
 
 
+8 # John Locke 2011-11-02 08:08
a million people strong, can they arrest everyone? it is going to happen, this movement is growing rapidly
 
 
+4 # Observer 47 2011-11-02 09:28
Something like that is already planned for Nov. 6th, in protest of the Keystone pipeline.
 
 
+20 # AKOldfart 2011-11-01 18:23
Hmm. Sounds like the police are going into this expecting a "skirmish." I'm sure they will make sure that their expectations are met.
 
 
+4 # Observer 47 2011-11-02 09:29
EXACTLY! The phrase, "skirmish line," immediately jumped out at me, too. And yes, if that's what you have in mind to start with, then generally, that's what you will make happen.
 
 
+26 # MHAS 2011-11-01 19:01
The police union and individual policemen and women need to really think about whether they consider themselves a part of the 99% and want to join the occupation. They should understand that the mayor is not really the target of the occupation except to the degree that she enables the banks and corporations to assert power...neither are the police the targets except to the degree that they repress dissent..
 
 
+19 # Texas Aggie 2011-11-01 23:10
Your point needs to be stressed and spread around. The city administration is NOT SUPPOSED to be part of the financial establishment that has its boot on the necks of the average citizen. If they are, then corruption is at work. That the police seem to think that they represent the financial establishment says volumes about why OWS is necessary.

As for the "just following orders" defense, there were never any orders from the mayor's office to attack the protestors. According to this article and others I've read, the police did the planning and implementation. There are lots of more peaceful and civilized ways to uphold law and order than hurting people, but I have reached the point where I don't believe anymore that the forces of law and order care about anything but satiating their own sadistic impulses. "Upholding law and order, following orders, etc." is just a pretext for beating up on defenseless people. You'll notice no police dared treat the armed Tea Partiers the same way they do unarmed protestors.
 
 
+6 # John Locke 2011-11-02 08:16
Texas Aggie...good points
 
 
+3 # Observer 47 2011-11-02 09:30
That last sentence is a real winner!
 
 
+8 # John Locke 2011-11-02 08:15
The mayer is in charge, she is the one to be held accountable, i haven't seen yet where they want to take care of Scot's medical bills and after care... if the police really feel like the comment from the Union, let them prove it by joining the occupy movement and refusing orders to remove protestors from any occupy movement across the country, what will then happen is the Prsident will send in the National Guard with real bullets, like Kent State, and maybe the police will have the guts to stand them down...if that would happen that would be the end of the system as it exists, the entire 300,000,000 would become involved and collapse this scam...
 
 
+13 # CesareBorgia 2011-11-01 19:19
This is the last time this type of thing is going to come up. There has to be a lot of police that realize they are being used and getting the shaft, just like the rest of us. They can't stay deaf, dumb and blind forever.
 
 
+13 # Texas Aggie 2011-11-01 23:13
Yes, they can. They're no different than the rest of the knuckleheads who have been voting for people who are representing their enemies since Reagan. Never overestimate the intelligence of people with faith based world views.
 
 
+4 # John Locke 2011-11-02 08:17
Texas Aggie, You are brilliant, you are so right on...
 
 
+14 # Josippie 2011-11-01 20:45
If all the policemen don't show up for duty and join the strike, it will be very peaceful and the police won't be needed. OK OK...realistica lly: how about a skeleton crew of police on duty to battle the real crimes that might show up somewhere that day, like robberies, rapes, murders?
 
 
+10 # in deo veritas 2011-11-01 20:58
I hope the police will use the "blue flu" and call off duty. This is an opportunity for them to step up and show the people that they support them. This would also set an example for other police depts (mainly NYPD) to try to restore their honor and self-respect that has gone down the tubes lately because of their stormtrooper tactics.
 
 
+10 # Archie1954 2011-11-01 21:26
Unfortunately the police are the reason there is a general strike called and as for the paint and bottles being thrown at them, it would be nice if we had a video showing the offensive parties so that they can be prosecuted unless they are actually police collaboraters and paid troublemakers.
 
 
+7 # Texas Aggie 2011-11-01 23:18
Notice in the picture that a few of the pigs have light blue paint on their clothes. Also notice that for some reason it doesn't seem to affect them. The same can't be said for people who were beaten with nightsticks, shot with rubber bullets and lead filled cloth bags, tear gassed, and pepper sprayed. One has to wonder about the courage of these "men in blue." Poor babies!
 
 
+13 # kpbird62 2011-11-01 21:30
I would like to say that I hope everyone stays PEACEFUL! Please do not get in the Police officers faces yelling, or throw things at them. The best way to get our point across is to stay calm. Chanting and singing is awesome. Sitting with arms linked, bring flowers to hand out. I wish I could be there, but I will be standing in Solidarity in Occupy Nevada County.:) PEACE and LOVE
 
 
+7 # Doubter 2011-11-01 21:49
"As your police officers, we are confused."
What a lovely statement. You've gotta love 'em for that! (I THINK I mean it...?)
 
 
+13 # Paul Scott 2011-11-01 23:22
There's nothing for the police to be confused about; they are either honor the First Amendment rights, in the Constitution, or they are enemies of the U.S. Constitution.

Damn I wish I were an attorney, I would love to represent the OWS people just to get to walk this right into the Supreme Court. What an oppertunity to raise the blinds in that house of corruption. The nine corporate lawyers in that institution is nothing more than 1% enablers.

I’m sure Michael Moore is making a documentary on whether we the people actually have constitutional rights; or not; and the people need to understand that they long ago lost their Constitutional rights.

When more than just a few of the voluntary military realizes that when they go off to war that its for the 1%, to protect their corporate interest, it’s going to be interesting.
 
 
+7 # MainStreetMentor 2011-11-01 23:31
Seems to me the police need to determine what they'll do as demands from their employer ... and what they will do from the demands of their conscience.
 
 
+4 # Patch 2011-11-02 00:11
The police officers are following orders from above, which I presume is the police commissioner. If the top brass told them to stand back and allow the protestors to demonstrate, they would do so. Top management wants the demonstrations stopped because they bow to the one percent.
And, where is Governor Moonbeam in all this?
 
 
+6 # TheRealRealist 2011-11-02 02:09
Did the mayor order you to use tear gas, flash grenades and bean bag bullets? That is what we want to know. If so, you should have alerted the press and forwarded her memo alluding to such. If not, then you have no one to blame but your egos.
 
 
+3 # BattleBorn 2011-11-02 03:58
A MUST SEE. This call to honor by Michael Ruppert, former LAPD, would bring any officer around: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sUKeZLeGTDk
 
 
+2 # Rita Walpole Ague 2011-11-02 05:48
St. Michael (my nickname for MM) ain't gonna shut up, even with threats of being driven off a cliff.

Nor should we the sheeple just sit back and relax in La La Land, as tempting as that might be. Today we're at a turning point, and our kids, grandkids, and future generations, worldwide, are counting on us to join the revolution, and get into and stay in protest to produce CHANGE (for the good of all the 99%) MODE.
 
 
+3 # humanmancalvin 2011-11-02 08:40
Could the mayor be setting up some city employees to be arrested during the protest, then fired for protesting? Could she be culling the herd?
 
 
+4 # qasee 2011-11-02 13:32
If these officers want to make a statement, they should surround a group of OWS protesters and face outward showing that they are protecting them.
 

THE NEW STREAMLINED RSN LOGIN PROCESS: Register once, then login and you are ready to comment. All you need is a Username and a Password of your choosing and you are free to comment whenever you like! Welcome to the Reader Supported News community.

RSNRSN