We weren’t there but a minute before they started giving the dispersal order. The first time they said five minutes, this time they said ‘now.’ They shot off the flash grenades and people scattered.Occupy Oakland activist Kat Brooks • Discussing the method in which the police booted them out of Frank Ogawa Plaza last night, arresting over 100 people and destroying their camp in the process. It was the second time in two days such an order was offered. “From the way they came into the camp [Tuesday] morning to the way they acted tonight, they have gone beyond what was necessary,” Brooks said. For their part, Oakland police claim that the tear gas was partly defensive in nature. ”We were in a position where we had to deploy gas in order to stop the crowd and people from pelting us with bottles and rocks,” said interim police chief, Howard Jordan. Officers on the ground reported getting hit with paint, beer and eggs. source (via • follow)
» What this means: While the movement does enjoy a plurality of support (in this poll, at this moment in time), a huge percentage of people haven’t yet made up their minds about it. This means there’s a lot of room for public opinion to swing either way, so decisions on the part of OWS’s still-emerging leadership over the next couple of months will be crucial in solidifying public support or rejection of the movement. This, in turn, will help determine whether or not OWS’s message actually ends up affecting legislation that comes out of Washington. Will Occupy Wall Street become the next Tea Party, which has had a huge impact on national politicians, or is it just a passing fad? According to this poll, the answer to that question is “to be determined.”
» Hiding a story from the media? The nurses arrested suggest that police were trying to hide an awkward scene from the cameras. “We were among the last protesters released, for no good reason that we can tell, except for they clearly knew when the media cameras had left,” said Jan Rodolfo, the Midwest director for NNU. “We were tearful and exhausted and shell shocked.” Rodolfo was among those arrested; her court date has been set for November 15.
» An attempt to move the show: This is the second weekend in a row that protests have been squashed at the park. Why’s that? Well, a group of protesters are attempting to move the protests outside of the city’s financial district. However, they haven’t gotten permits. “We are going to hold this space, and that’s what we are going to do,” said organizer Brit Schulte. “Our ability to invoke our civil rights to protest shouldn’t be limited, and we shouldn’t be censored.”
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I find it puzzling that NPR objects to my exercising my rights as an American citizen — the right to free speech, the right to peaceable assembly — on my own time in my own life. I’m not an NPR employee. I’m a freelancer. NPR doesn’t pay me. I’m also not a news reporter. I don’t cover politics. I’ve never brought a whiff of my political activities into the work I’ve done for NPR World of Opera. What is NPR afraid I’ll do — insert a seditious comment into a synopsis of Madame Butterfly?NPR freelancer Lisa Simeone • Discussing her firing as the freelance host of two NPR music shows, Soundprint and World of Opera, for playing spokesperson for Occupy DC. (EDIT: Simeone only got booted off Soundprint, not World of Opera, which is run by an NPR affiliate who is standing by Simeone. The earlier version of the article we used was incorrect.) We can to some degree see her point, but … this is NPR we’re talking about here. They’ve had to fight off two pretty significant controversies in the past twelve months, and they’ve approached them with some hardcore seriousness. So, yes, while the Occupy movement has nothing to do with opera, she’s also working with what’s perhaps the organization that needs to walk on eggshells the most regarding ethics scandals. Say what you will Lisa — you do have some valid points — but you should’ve been aware of how NPR would’ve handled this based on what happened with Juan Williams.