G.A. Minutes 9-17-13
Today is the 2nd year anniversary of Occupy. The movement began as Occupy Wall Street 2 years ago with the occupation and encampment at Zucotti Park in New York City. The basic concepts of the Occupy originators rang true with many Americans and Occupy camps sprung up across the nation and around the world. Of course, the autocrats would have none of this. With their hired law enforcement goons, politicians and major media robots they made a serious attempt to smash and destroy this movement. To those who remained glued to their television sets it appeared as though the demolition was complete. However, as a common Occupy slogan states, “Resistance is not futile”. Occupy and the ideals represented remain. Some of Occupy’s maxims are now part of everyday American language. Most groups throughout the country are smaller, consisting of only the genuinely dedicated. They are older and wiser.
Tonight we have too many things on our plate to have baked a cake or made any preparations for a birthday party. We just verbally acknowledge the day and wish each other Happy Birthday. We prefer working for meaningful change to making lots of noise and calling attention to ourselves. There will be time to party later.
We feel the first touches of autumn in the air. This evening the warmth of the fire will be a necessity. As we are setting up, one of the regular females from the street walks up and hands an Occupier a bag lunch. He tells her thank you and says to us, “They must have been so short staffed tonight at the Mission that they weren’t able to do any cooking. That happens sometimes”.
There are quite a few street folks hanging on the ledges and in the street. They are friendly but subdued. After their initial boisterous greetings they settle into quiet conversation in small groups. One of our former campers is with us again tonight. She had been forced to go to a shelter in another city and has just returned. It appears she has missed us. We have not seen each other for at least a year but with her many memory deficits she won’t have to do any catching up. We like her and are glad she has returned.
We do a quick overview of all the things we have to do in the next week or so. Every day except tomorrow was occupied and now we find we will need to attend 2 back to back events tomorrow. Everybody groans but realizes the importance of the events. One of our friends running for City office has decided to break all the standard campaign rules and actually speak out about serious and very important issues. He will hold a press conference tomorrow speaking about his opposition to the proposed sulfide mine and the proposed tar sands pipelines. He has told us, “I not so much concerned about winning the election as I am being a voice in favor of Mother Earth and those who love her. As a candidate I have a platform from which I can speak and I’m going to use it”. The press conference will be at the pavilion in Lincoln Park at 6:30pm. We’ll be there to back him up and then run off for a meeting with our friend running for a different City office. So much for a day off.
The older man from the neighborhood stops by. This time he can sit for a while. In the past he generally would sit and listen to our conversation. Tonight he does the talking. He tells us about a film showing he attended recently. The film discussed the concept of exponential growth. Through a series of graphs and mathematical equations it showed how 3% growth could become 75% growth in less than 100 years. One of the Occupiers attempts to engage him in a discussion about the current government election cycle as this had previously been the man’s primary interest. He is no longer interested in our one party disguised as two system. Something has changed for him. Perhaps he’ll continue to visit us and we’ll find out what has happened.
An Occupier reports the domain name for our website needs to be renewed. Another reports our firewood stash is just about gone. The Occupier couple offers to order another supply and to pay one half of the cost with the other half coming from our treasury.
The fire is low and we can feel a chill. We decide not to use any more wood as we don’t know how long it will take to get more. Anyway, it’s late, the night shift street workers are arriving and we have a full week ahead of us. We plan on being back here at CJM on Saturday, September 28th.
G.A. Minutes 9-17-13