A year ago today, I was living on the lawn of Los Angeles City Hall. Occupy Los Angeles was in full swing, and was having a huge potluck celebration. Last year I chose to fast for the day, in solidarity with the indigenous peoples, and we had planned activities throughout the day.
That was also the day we faced the reality we would not be Occupying City Hall much longer. General Services came in the middle of Thanksgiving afternoon, in the middle of the hustle & bustle of setting up food service stations, and put up a sign on the fountain box mural, with “park hours” and made this statement regarding the “Park Rules”.
This sent the Occupation into a frenzy of phone calls, and eruptions over whether or not they were going to come down on us that very night. People were in shock the city had the audacity to do this on a holiday. So we demanded answers, none were given. The city that had passed a measure supporting Occupy Los Angeles, yet never once spoke with us, and rarely listened to us when addressed, were now kicking up off the lawn we as residents of Los Angeles own.
Six days later Occupy Los Angeles was evicted in a military style operation with 1400 LAPD officers on scene, and almost 300 arrests.
So today I reflect on this past year, the ups and downs, the wins, and loses. Overall I think OLA has accomplished more than we have ever given ourselves credit for. We are still here, and thats an accomplishment in itself. We should all be thankful today that this many people from across the globe have had the strength to stand up against corruption in all its forms, and that we have been able to take part in the first ever global movement, to change the dialogue globally.
One last thought: today while shoving your face, think about all those who have less, and need our support. Thin about how you can help community members, family and friends facing rough times. Talk to the people you are around, educate them, and educate yourselves about the situations of those closest to you. I bet everyone can find one person facing foreclosure or homelessness this year, in their close social circles. Instead of shopping, lets give real gifts, and help provide for the people in our lives who need it most.