Hundreds ‘occupy’ Sacramento City Hall for more time
“This is the first time in my 24 years that I’ve experienced direct democracy,” an Occupy Sacramento organizers said.
“I was arrested on Oct. 7 and Oct. 9 for exercising my right of freedom of assembly in Cesar Chavez park along with 32 others,” protestor Sarah Thomas said.
“The unemployment is skyrocketing and the benefits we used to provide to this community are gone,” protestor Christina-Kay Plum said. “I don’t know how we are going to keep sustaining if we don’t have the right to assemble.”
The “Occupy” movement started in New York City with “Occupy Wall Street” to protest corporate greed. The movement spread across the country and eventually to Sacramento.
Occupy protestors wanted to convince the body to allow occupation of Cesar Chavez Park 24 hours a day.
The “Occupy Sacramento” movement is its sixth day. Since Thursday, 35 protestors have been for unlawful assembly after the park’s closing time.
Many organizers, volunteers, and demonstrators said Social Media has helped make the movement more successful.
“Without social media, things like this wouldn’t be possible,” Occupy Sacramento volunteer Christopher MacDonald said. “Our Facebook page that we’ve got here, Occupy Sacramento, right now, we’ve got 4300 people who like us.”
Local movement organizers are pushing to connect with occupy nationally and globally with the help of video chat and Skype.
Sacto 911: Nobody arrested at Occupy Sacramento protest last night
By Bill Lindelof firstname.lastname@example.org
No Occupy Sacramento protestors were arrested late last night when the order was given to vacate Chavez Plaza, according to Sacramento police.
About 40 people were in the park across from City Hall at Ninth and I streets at 11 p.m. Sunday. When the dispersal order was given by police all protestors left and marched around the park until 12:30 a.m.
The night before, 14 protesters were arrested for failure to disperse.
Occupy Sacramento participants festive, persistent
The Occupy Sacramento movement took on a festival-like atmosphere Saturday evening at Cesar Chavez Plaza, with more than 300 people milling, lounging, singing and waving signs critical of Wall Street and corporate America.
Some participants in the national resistance movement marched on J Street during Second Saturday, the city’s monthly art walk, later in the evening to draw more attention to their message.
Much of their frustration seems centered on banks and other large corporations, which they contend hold too much power and are dismissive of people who are suffering in the midst of a recession.
More than a dozen dome tents dotted the park across from City Hall near Ninth and J streets about 6:30 p.m. Saturday, and organizers were laying in supplies in anticipation of staying for a while.
The scene was largely sedate, with handmade signs ringing the plaza’s fountains and couples and families resting on blankets. Two men played chess. One woman held a protest sign in one hand and tossed a ball to her dog with the other. Demonstrators occasionally erupted in song or began chanting, and people took turns at a bullhorn, bellowing, “Occupy!” and “Let’s make our voices heard!”
Police arrested 20 people on Thursday night for sleeping in the park after its 11 p.m. closing time, and kept them in jail overnight. Only one person was cited Friday night.
“Most of us disassembled when we saw the police coming in their riot gear,” said Sean Thompson, one of the local organizers. The local group is part of a burgeoning movement that began in New York’s financial district more than three weeks ago as Occupy Wall Street and has spread across the country.
The protests have made headlines and drawn crowds, but some observers question the movement’s lack of clear leadership or focus.