I was on the streets of Chicago in August 1968 when provocative disrupters among overwhelmingly nonviolent protesters were infiltrated by provocateurs and beset by rampaging police, producing a televised spectacle that had the perverse effect of encouraging a disengaged public to side with the police against what they thought were dangerous and frivolous revolutionaries—even as the Vietnam War declined in popularity. Let there be no romanticizing of those who “upped the ante” toward militancy, indifferent to the fact that 95 percent of America was politically on their right—or of the few hundreds whose stagy vandalism (“Days of Rage”) a year later sounded the death knell for a mass student movement.
A sizable effort—a campaign, even—to frame the upcoming NATO-G8 protesters as a story about justice, democracy, and nonviolence against institutional violence and police repression will be needed if the movement hopes to minimize opportunities for state aggression as well as convince activists and the broader public that this is cause worth participating in as agents of change.
Open letter from an Occupy Oakland activist calling for an end to “Fuck The Police” activities and suggesting refocus on several positive alternatives.
Occupy Oakland has lost focus, and we need to regain that focus. When Occupy Oakland first started, it was a beautiful thing. We had community support. The camp fed thousands of people. We decreased the crime rate in the area. We got shit done. This is no longer the case. We have squandered what community support we had. It is now more important for us to say “Fuck The Police” every Saturday instead of saying “Fuck The Banks”, “Fuck Your Bullshit Laws”, or “Fuck The Government”. Occupy Oakland needs to regain the beauty that it once had. Fuck ‘em but don’t focus on them. It’s not productive. What are you accomplishing? Drawing the spotlight to a Police Department that we all already know is fucked up? Ask the citizens of Oakland. They know that Oakland Police Department is fucked up. They have known this for years. This is nothing new. Get around it. Get over it. The Oakland Police are nothing but a distraction and a tool of the real problem, which is the Government behind the Police Department. By pitting us against them, they are distracting us from achieving our goals.
Fuck the police needs to stop.
Factional groups need to stop.
Attempting to take over empty buildings needs to stop.
Vandalizing our community needs to stop.
The time has come to refocus all that energy on something productive. The time to regain the community support that we have lost because of our own inability to not realize that Fucking The Police, while as fun as it is, accomplishes nothing. Its time to quit fucking around.
I propose these following things to focus our energy on these attainable goals instead, Occupy Oakland.