‘Occupations’ under siege from Oakland to Orlando
Several “Occupy” protests across the country encountered major police crackdowns late Tuesday evening. From Oakland to Albuquerque, Tucson, Baltimore, Atlanta, Tampa and Orlando, the occupations are under siege.
Receiving the most national coverage has been the police action in “Occupy Oakland,” where another slue of arrests were made for a second consecutive day. More than 100 protesters were handcuffed as cops once again used tear gas and weaponry, causing protesters to shout, “Who are you protecting?”
Also popping up on the national scene was police action at “Occupy Atlanta,” where around 50 protesters were arrested after authorities warned the crowd at Woodruff Park to leave. Protesters sang “We Shall Overcome” as police walked or dragged them out of the park. Among the protestors arrested was State Sen. Vincent Fort (D), who called the police action “overkill.”
“He’s using all these resources. This is the most peaceful place in Georgia,” Fort told a local CBS affiliate, referring to Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed, who was planning to revoke the permit allowing the protestors to stay. “At the urging of the business community, he’s moving people out. Shame on him.”
At “Occupy Albuquerque” in New Mexico, state police arrested 50 protestors after after University of New Mexico administrators refused to renew the protesters’ permit to occupy Yale Park. Not far away from Albuquerque at “Occupy Tucson” another 23 protesters were arrested at two different sites.
Despite not having any arrests, “Occupy Orlando” also had to contend with aggressive police behavior. Authorities removed protesters’ items from the park behind the Orlando Chamber of Commerce after giving them just 20 minutes to gather their stuff and leave.
Previously, protesters had been allowed to leave their stuff in the park when asked to leave from 11 P.M to 6 A.M. Police removed food, generators, supplies, and even an American flag.
“It’s incredibly frustrating,” said Amy Ritter, an “Occupy Orlando” protester. “We’re obviously out here occupying for significant change, and it’s very important that we maintain a presence. Right now, every day, the rules change. Sometimes we’re allowed to keep materials here, and then all of a sudden, they come in and give us 20 minutes to move everything off property.”
And protesters at “Occupy Baltimore” are bracing for a showdown with police on Wednesday night after City Hall officials decided on Tuesday that camping in the public plaza downtown would no longer be tolerated .