Posts Tagged ‘ #OWS ’

Occupy Atlanta Day 9: A Movement Takes Shape

Previous days’ coverage can be found here.

I arrived at 3:32 yesterday. The cleaning crew had come and gone, and by all accounts they were polite and didn’t interfere with the protesters.

Earlier in the morning, Occupy Atlanta marched on the State Capitol with Moveon.org, but once Moveon brought out politicians to give stump speeches, the occupiers left. There is a very real distrust of organized political power, and the occupiers are positively paranoid about being co-opted by any particular political movement. Whether this results in them having no political voice remains to be seen.

A lot of people were in the park, but not the thousand expected. Still, despite the lack of demands, the movement continues to grow.

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Occupy Atlanta Day 8: Words on the Street

Previous days’ coverage can be found here.

Yesterday, I went directly to the kitchen and didn’t get to Woodruff Troy Davis Park until 7:53 P.M. After eight hours of making food, we showed up with three 5 gallons buckets of food, and they lasted for about thirty minutes. A lot more people were present for the General Assembly last night than any day since Friday, October 8th, when the occupation began.

Friday night saw a new moderator who had trouble keeping people from speaking out of turn. It doesn’t look like anyone can or will moderate for more than two days, and being a moderator looks like one of the worst jobs in the world. My theory is that people think to themselves, “It can’t be that hard, I know I could do a better job,” and then when they get up there are confronted with the unpleasant reality that both of their assumptions were wrong. The sole good moderator has disappeared for the time being, at least from the GA’s.

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Occupy Atlanta Day 7: Proposed List of Demands for #Occupy Atlanta

My previous coverage of #OccupyAtlanta can be found here. Continue reading

Occupy Atlanta Day 6: Growing Pains

Previous coverage of #OccupyAtlanta can be found here. This post is a big information dump, so I apologize in advance.

I arrived at Woodruff Troy Davis Park at 4:09 PM yesterday. I attended a committee meeting and brought a load of donated fresh vegetables to the soup kitchen. There was some other stuff, but it’s boring, so let’s get to the General Assembly, which had a lot of information and shed some interesting light on the challenges facing the #OccupyAtlanta Movement.

7:11: The General Assembly begins. The girl who ran the impromptu GA assembly on Monday was moderating. She’s the best moderator I’ve seen thus far, as she’s able to cut people off without being rude about it, which is probably the most important talent a moderator can have.

The General Assembly had about 40 participants at the beginning, and the number swelled to maybe 80 people after an hour before dropping off to 30 or so by the end.

The first 30 minutes of the GA hummed along without much dissent. The moderator explained the process for the GA for people who had not attended one before (about a third of the crowd). Some announcements were made. Continue reading

Occupy Atlanta Day Five: Behind the Scenes

The previous day’s coverage can be found here.

Alternate titles for this post were, “I was not at the march on Bank of America,” and “I succumb to Stockholm Syndrome.”

Unfortunately, yesterday I was so busy doing actual work instead of observing that I failed to make use of my handy-dandy notebook, so this post is primarily from memory. Also, as I become more involved with the organization, I have a feeling my journalistic endeavor will continue shifting from an attempt at objectivity to one of advocacy.

You have been warned.

On Tuesday, October 11th, #OccupyAtlanta planned a protest on the Bank of America building in uptown Atlanta. People were asked to assemble at 4:00, with the march planned to begin at 4:30.

I didn’t go to it, but from talking to people who did, it sounded like there were between two and three hundred protesters, and the police gave them no trouble.

For the record, I would like to point out that this AJC article is shockingly dishonest, and their description of #OccupyAtlanta is so biased I can’t believe any human being with a sense of decency would publish it. Shame on you Christian Boone and Jeremiah McWilliams. I wished the AJC had pictures of the protesters, so I could discuss this article with them in person if they continue covering the occupation. Continue reading

Occupy Atlanta Day 4: Police Showdown

Coverage of day one can be found here.

Day two can be found here.

I missed day three because of a barbecue.

I showed up for #OccupyAtlanta’s fourth day of protesting at six o’clock, thinking that would be when the General Assembly began, just like every other day. It didn’t however, and when I asked around no one (including the people working at the “Welcome Committee” table) knew for what time it was scheduled.

I counted up the tents as I waited around; I’m happy to report there were forty-two tents set up, and Woodruff Troy Davis Park actually appeared to be occupied.

The General Assembly began at 7:09, and the first order of business was deciding how to respond to a credible rumor that the police would be evicting the occupiers from the park at eleven under a city ordinance regarding public park curfews. Apparently a city council member informed the occupiers that Mayor Kasim Reed was going to sic the police on the occupiers at 11.

The various committees made their announcements, but everything in the General Assembly was rushed through to discuss how the movement would respond to the police threat. I have to say, this was the best moderated General Assembly I’d been to thus far, and this with a crowd larger than Saturday’s, although smaller than Friday’s. I think #OccupyAtlanta is solidifying as a movement run by Millenials, and as time goes on more of them come out from the woodwork. They impressed me; it seems like the police threat backfired and innervated #OccupyAtlanta

One note: The Metro Atlanta Task Force for the Homeless made an announcement in solidarity with #OccupyAtlanta. The Task Force runs the Peachtree Vines Homeless Shelter, and will be evicted within the next month so that their building can be sold for storefronts/condos/whatever.

At 7:34 the crowd began discussing whether they would continue occupying the park or if they would cede to the APD if asked to leave. Continue reading