Denver police use intimidation to try to squash an anti-police-brutality march in solidarity with Anaheim, causing some arrests:
Sergeant Andrejasich barked at us that “if you go in the street again, we will arrest you.” This threat seemed absurd given that whenever we march, DPD’s vehicles that follow us essentially shut down traffic anyway. Sergeant Andrejasich was clearly hoping that by threatening arrest and possible violence, he could frighten our solidarity march into giving up and going home. He should know by now that Occupy Denver doesn’t play like that. Having seen DPD use violence or the threat of violence countless times to attempt to silence dissent, I figured someone should resolve Sergeant Andrejasich’s confusion about the relationship between his department and our subversive assembly.
When two are arrested at a #chalkupy event, a mother sees the event as a teachable moment on how the police respond to dissent:
When I pressed her about what I should tell my children about their fear of police, she recommended that I go home and have a discussion about how it’s wrong to damage public property, and that it was going to take tax payer money to remove the chalk. I offered to go home and get rags and buckets. She said it wouldn’t make a difference. Of course, we did go home and have a discussion. I did tell my children not to be afraid of police. (We are not people of color, so it’s a lot easier for me to say this to my children than it is for others. If we had dark skin, this particular issue would have been much more complex. And that conversation will come, too.) But, I also told them that our country is not perfect. Just like at home, we all have to pitch in.
Photo by John Jack Anderson
When people asked why we were marching, we said, “There is this agreement that jazz clubs made to pay into the musicians’ pensions, for which they get a tax write off. They got the write off, but don’t pay.” It’s so so simple it’s not even about music: it’s just about keeping a promise. People get that right away, and it’s hard to disagree. Then there’s clubs recording musicians and selling the recordings without paying them, that’s to tell the many musicians who walk by and understand in a sound-byte’s time how wrong that is.
On the east side of the street there is a strip of grass. People are often sitting, waiting–usually for hours–for loved ones to walk out of the gates, always looking over their shoulders to make sure they don’t miss them. Sometimes when you’re in the area you get the pleasure of witnessing one of these reunions. People run into the street to embrace their families with smiles and sometimes even tears.
Even further south is the entrance to another division–Division 10–where two of my friends, two of the NATO 5, are currently being held. I go to visit one of them, Sabi, usually once a week and I can tell the guards are beginning to recognize me.
"Parts of the conversation were more difficult. He told me that he’d been “in the hole” (solitary confinement) all of last week, and hadn’t been allowed visitors. The reason they gave him was that there “weren’t enough cells.” I could tell that he didn’t buy that excuse, and neither did I. He looked sad and a bit lost when he said, “I didn’t even do anything, and they put me in the hole all week.” I wanted to give him a hug, because he looked like he needed it."
An activist from Occupy Chicago finds solidarity even behind locked doors and iron bars.
We moved to two other locations and had the opportunity to talk to many more people–including Ribfest security guards, who didn’t try to stop us at all but actually encouraged us to continue. They told us they agreed with our messages and pointed out open areas that we hadn’t chalked up yet. “You missed a spot over there!” they would say, pointing, a mischievous grin pulling at the corners of their mouths.
We Are All Mark Adams!
You may have heard about our friend and comrade Mark Adams, a member of the OWS community who, earlier this week, was sentenced to 45 days on Rikers Island.
Here is a report on Monday night’s march in solidarity with Mark, and the candlelight vigil that followed afterwards outside Revered Cooper’s home.
Six points of view of the first five minutes Wednesday night’s casseroles march in NYC: Almost immediately after the march left Washington Square park, the police brutally began arresting some of the more active casseroles marchers. Here, a few witnesses put their thoughts together in a mosaic recounting the march’s beginning.
This one of many posts on Occupied Stories recounting events on June 6th, in which cities all over the world marched in solidarity with protests in Quebec. You may read an arrestee’s account of the march here, and a longer account on the progression of the march here. A story recounting jail support in Chicago may be found here.