G.A. Minutes 1-14-14
The cold snap has finally broken and we are now basking in the warmth of +10 and +20 degree temperatures. Considering the 2 weeks of severely below zero temps we just suffered through, we’re not complaining.
We begin by discussing the status of our latest Overpass Light Brigade project. We have the actual boards made and most of the lights have been purchased. There is still a lot of work to do and the event is supposed to happen on Jan. 23rd. We plan to spend most of the upcoming weekend working on this. We hope Men As Peacemakers will show up to help us but if they don’t, we’re prepared to complete the project ourselves. We’re trying out a new way of making the light boards; there will be 24 letters which will say Native Women Are Not For Sale.
Last Saturday we had 2 major events of equal importance to attend so we split up with some of us going to one event and others attending the other. The Occupiers who attended the Progressive Forum report at least 100+ people were in attendance. There was much discussion about the need for all progressive groups to work together and to conscientiously avoid petty disagreements and the spreading of rumors. This behavior feeds the divide and conquer strategy of the 1%. It’s also reported there were many people from Democratic Party organizations and few young people.
The Occupiers who attended the 13 Moons Pow Wow report a huge crowd of over 1,000 with much drumming, dancing and socializing. The Occupiers spent their time staffing the table of the Northwoods Wolf Alliance. Many new volunteers were recruited and everyone had a very good time.
Last night many of the Occupiers attended the Water Legacy workshop related to the upcoming public comment hearing on the proposed Polymet sulphide mine in northern Minnesota. From the hearing they went to the City Council meeting where the first step for the Homeless Bill of Rights was unanimously approved by the City Councilors. The Bill of Rights will now be passed on to the Human Rights Commission. Everyone agrees that the Occupier who has been asked to join the HRC should do so asap so as to give an Occupy viewpoint concerning the Homeless Bill of Rights. The Occupier says she will fill out the paperwork right away.
An Occupier reports CHUM will be holding a donation drive January 31st and February 1st. They have been asking for volunteers and she was thinking the Occupiers should step up but as she’s been watching things, it appears the local churches will have this thing covered. Many are volunteering their buildings as drop off spaces, their vehicles for transportation and their members to staff the drive. Another Occupier says,” Maybe they’re being so cooperative because with this event they won’t have to actually touch or interact with homeless people”. A mean comment, but unfortunately, probably true.
With all the reports out of the way, a discussion about the 2 emails received from Popular Resistance begins. At first we have a good laugh because the information in the emails is primarily taken from the writings of Bill Moyer. The article states Bill Moyer passed away in 2001. Upon reading this several Occupiers said, “What! Bill Moyers is not dead. I just read his latest article yesterday”. There was much internet messaging between the Occupiers and one even attempted to email Popular Resistance to inform them of their error. An Occupier with an eye for detail then messaged the others, “It’s Bill Moyer, not Bill Moyers”.
We talk about Bill Moyer’s idea of the 8 stages of revolution, the idea that the Occupy Movement brought on the 4th stage and that we are now in the 6th stage. Stage 6 is the stage of Major Public Support, the time when the general public is ready for knowledge and ideas about the true state of the world and what can be done about it. Mr. Moyer states many organizers think that the job is to fight the banks, lawmakers, police, judges etc. In reality the job is to interact with people in our daily lives and consciously bring up the subject of the 1% and how the world is run. This does not mean dogmatic preaching but just gentle conversation and listening.
As we converse we notice the workers cleaning the floors and putting the chairs up. It’s time to leave; they need to go home.
We make plans to meet on Thursday at the public comment hearing, on Saturday at the OLB light board making space and here again, at the Amazing Grace Café, next Tuesday.