April 5, 2012 : Occupy Transit, Ayers Kerfuffle, Eyes Turn to May 1
Former Weatherman uber-vandal and mass media-labeled “domestic terrorist,” Bill Ayers appears at an OWS rally and again ruffles blogosphere feathers with his comments.
The now retired academic and education theorist doesn't utter words without causing kerfuffle and yesterday was no exception as Ayers critiqued the US' “militarized society,” and told the crowd that he wished plane crews that frequently seat our nation's military ahead of other passengers, should “let the teachers and nurses get on first.”
The original comments, un-excerpted from their original context, and stripped of commentary, are featured in the video above.
The next 3-4 weeks may be key for OWS, according to the LA Times, which points to the May 1 General Strike as one perceived test of the movement's durability. Like many pundits and politicos, writer David Horsey wonders if the movement is changing America quickly enough.
Also in LA, a City Councilor pushes a new law to restrict access to City Hall park and empower authorities to arrest demonstrators for pitching tents. Occupy LA protester Cheryl Aichele criticized the move, saying the council should be focusing on saving homes to keep residents out of tents, not banning them. LA Times
While LA tries to keep Occupy out, as mentioned previously, Occupy Minneapolis is gears up for phase 2, with a planned occupation of Peavey Plaza starting Saturday. Ben Egerman with Occupy Minneapolis says protestors plan to “defy the Park Board's midnight curfew and set up tents.” Let's see how authorities respond. MPR News
Protesters who insist on camping inevitably face protracted legal battles, such as Occupy Boise, which has become a veritable soap opera of delays, stays, and injunctions. Necn.com
Ditto across the pond for Occupy Nottingham where a judge has ruled that the legal battle must go to “full trial.” bbc.co.uk
On the heels of the police raid of the apparently abandoned - then occupied - Catholic Archdiocese building, Occupy SF gathered in front of SF City Hall to commemorate 44th anniversary of the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King. Nbcbayarea.com
Speaking of Dr. King, Democracy Now features two lengthy pieces : 1) his contribution to “Labor Rights as Human Rights” as well as author Tim Weiner describing FBI surveillance of King right up to the day of the assassination.
Occupy Portsmouth, who were due to hold a rally in memory of Trayvon Martin, apparently did not, and the Boston Globe now reports that the groups Facebook page and site are now gone.
Occupy Boston has formed an offshoot, Occupy the MBTA, in protest of recently approved fare hikes and service cuts to public transportation. Boston.com
The move to Occupy around public transportation (Occupy Transit)is taking hold, what with last week's action taken to give riders a free pass on the NYC metro, and yesterday's Day of Action, huffpost .
Transportation issues dovetail with Occupy's take on corporate greed and gets into the myriad complex wall street bond schemes that municipalities frequently resort to subsidize capital intensive infrastructure, exhibit A : Birmingham, Alabama as previously reported by NY Times
Occupy Portland got in on the act as well. Katu.com
Finally, here come the Occupy : Where Are They Now stories. Local online rag volcanoweekly.com catches up with Occupy Tacoma and says they are finding new focus after leaving Pugnetti Park. Like other Occupys, they have spun off, and formed a new group, Occupy the Hood which, according to organizer Dennis Lucas, is is an "autonomous national grassroots movement... in solidarity with any progressive organization or movement who desires and works towards the liberation, benefit and improvement of the quality of life of disenfranchised People of Color." Others including members of UFCW Local 21, are taking action on home foreclosures.