Its been almost 11 months now, and as we close in on the year anniversary of Occupy, we see major fear arising from the simple fact that Occupy Los Angeles is still around, still going strong, and refusing to give up or give in.
This has infuriated the business interests of those who control and want to own all of downtown Los Angeles. The Central City Association has commandeered Los Angeles in the name of the banks, corporate interests, and the nepotisic group of fiends and lackeys.
This group has a plan for Los Angeles, and it does not include Occupy, the unhoused, the small business owners, or long time residents of Los Angeles. What it does include is destroying Santee Alley, a new stadium for a team that doesn't exist, converting the rest of the small rooms and affordable housing downtown into high end lofts, exactly like those that sit empty all over the city.
They plan on pushing the unhoused out of skid row, claiming they are helping these people by cleaning the streets, stealing their stuff, arresting them for sleeping in, feeling ill, or "looking suspicious". There is no real plan on how to help these people, or where they would go, just a plan to push these people out of the only area that has services nearby, by force.
Recently many news reports have discussed us, discussed more police presence, problems at Pershing, ect. Its odd to me that they are attempting to blame us for problems that have plagued downtown Los Angeles for decades. They act as if Pershing Square wasn't known as the toilet of downtown before we got there, that the unhoused utilized this space long before Occupy, or that the lack of treatment and housing available for the many residents of downtown with mental instabilities, or substance abuse issues.
Every time I go to Pershing Square, I see verbal and physical assaults. I have put my body on the line to stop assaults many times. I have chased many a weirdo with my cameras, and to be honest, 90% of the bullshit I encounter has nothing to do with us, other than we are the ones being harrassed. People demand food, cigarettes, bedding, medical treatment, money, you name it, they want it. We feed as many people as we can when we have food. Plenty of occupiers feel like cigarette vending machines, as they give them out as often as possible. We have offered unhoused people safety in community, but not all accept our outreach, and instead turn on us, attack us, or attack others, in our vicinity which makes it seem as if they were with us.
We cannot control who comes into a public area. We have had issues with many people who we have asked to leave us alone, to not come around us, for a variety of reasons. Whether they be violent, verbally abusive, sex offenders, or we feel someone is putting us in danger we have attempted for months to keep dangerous activity away from our community. Being that LAPD has never had any interest in helping us with these matters, and honestly does not have the trust of our group to help us, we are left dealing with these situations on our own. Sometimes one has to wonder how much these problem people are getting paid...
When we had our camp at city hall, it was a regular thing to have police drop off people to cause problems. There is video and photo evidence of them doing so. We had folks who had just got out of jail who were told to go to our camp by the police. They told us this! Luckily many of these people were never an issue, even though the police wanted them to be.
Just the other day, when there were arrests of occupiers at Pershing, it was over a man who came in threatend assault, and was extremely intoxicated. He even waved a can of steel reserve he was drinking around in front of LAPD as they arrested our comrade he had threatened with assault, and charged at. Nothing was done to this man, the police seemed to have no interest in the fact he had an open container and was extremely intoxicated, yet took a sober person trying to defend himself. Does this make sense to you? Meanwhile they try to charge us with empty beer cans lying around from other people, and arrest occupiers for chalking on the sidewalk.
To me this screams "Bullshit" but to outsiders, and to those who don't spend a lot of time with us, they are wondering what exactly is going on. Its easy to explain really, Occupy Los Angeles has brought attention to the real villians of downtown Los Angeles, and they are feeling threatened. The only thing they know how to do is use their money and influence to run a smear campaign against us. Its only a matter of time before this behavior also blows up in their faces.
So I urge all of my Occupy comrades, all Occupy supporters, and others to seek the truth for themselves. Talk to the people who have been putting amazing efforts forth to create a better world. Make comments on those internet news sites that post disinformation, write letters to the editors of these news publications, use your words to fight this decietful spectacle the powers that be are trying to create.
Lets prove to them all, we aren't the bad guys. We are the ones here to expose who they are, how they are connected, and what interests they really serve. We are here to fight for our rights, and the rights of those scared to speak up, we are here to create a better world. Nothing will stop us. Nothing.