Tag Archives: police violence

What I Learned From Streaming Protests and Uprisings

I’ve always been a huge fan of technology. I’ve been fortunate enough to have semi regular access (regular now) to the internet since 1996. I remember the days when yahoo messenger, and aol gave us our first video chats, with friends, family, and those we never met.

Years ago I hosted an internet show on a site called Stickam, which I could pull other users video feeds in and have a live talk show with guests. It was mildly popular, and included a few guests of infamy, and was hosted live from… my bedroom.

At the time, I also had started a livestream account, but the platform was choppy, ustream coaxed me in and asked me to try their service. Also too choppy during those days in 2008. I kept my account around though.

When Occupy started, I was one of the few people at the Los Angeles camp who had experience with streaming. I helped find guests, (who sadly were not always allowed in the media tent, but that’s another story) and tried to help find relevant content for offline media, but during camp days, until the final weeks we were not offline much.

I had suggested instead of the bizarre ideas the media team had about buy thousands of dollars worth of equipment, we get some decent phones, some battery packs, and hook up streamers, instead of our laptop on a car with converters, and truck batteries. I was shut down.

Then the Skyborg appeared, and other streamers from Oakland, and San Francisco, and people realized, laptops were stupid, and dangerous if you had to run, phones and battery packs work.

I started using my own phone to stream for OLA in April of 2012. Prior to that I spent the prior 7 months mixing our official channel, rebroadcasting streams from across the world, as well as General Assemblies, and other meetings and actions.

I already knew before I even posted my first “I’m going Live” update, that the cops were going to be watching.

I’ve always tried to take that into account, but because of the transparency of Occupy, many times I ended up feeling uncomfortable about what I had streamed, fearful people could be targeted because of my footage. I watched comrades arrested again and again, and by summer of 2012, realized as soon as I left an action, the cops moved in, to either terrorize or harass people at the action.

I had one of my stream supporters listening to scanners hear my voice over the scanner, and I then told the pigs we are watching the watchers. Support heard me say it over the scanner as the channel was open and they were mid convo, which ended with OH SHIT, and no more scanner.

I’ve gone to stream events at consulates, where I normally have full service, to not be able to get online to stream, not from any phone, on any service or portable wifi. We know LAPD has stingrays, and are using them to steal our incoming data, so since they redirect our cell phone, its hard to get data out.

All this, I have seen and experienced, and it took a toll. The amount of state violence I have not only witnessed, but have been personally affected by, even if it is “only PTSD” from a past attack, and minor injuries now.

This is why I was hesitant to stream the LA marches around the Mike Brown shooting. This is why I have tweeted, but not streamed. I don’t want any of the people who end up on my footage to be criminalized because of it.

I don’t want what happened to this kid in Baltimore to happen to ANYONE because of my footage, let alone get paid for that type of thing. Yes, I used to take donations, but I also didn’t work, I streamed full time, and my combined donations from 2.5 years, didn’t even cover one years phone bill. It was just about keeping people connected to what was happening.

But is that connection for others on the outside worth the potential of jail for someone else? No.
I am going to refrain from streaming uprisings, maybe I’ll cover meetings, happy shit, ya know the stuff that no one watches… 🙂 But from here on out, all my riot porn goes to the ACLU Mobile Justice CA App.

And maybe some pics to twitter when I feel like it. Follow me there @lizsavage


No Justice No Peace: Kelly Thomas’s Murders Let Free

How the fuck were these violent criminals found not guilty? #JusticeForKellyThomas

How the fuck were these violent criminals found not guilty? #JusticeForKellyThomas

Another case of police brutality goes unpunished as the violent murders of Kelly Thomas were found not guilty in an Orange County court yesterday.

I am completely disgusted with this farce of a “legal system” we have in this country, as I cannot believe that anyone could view this footage and find them not guilty! Trigger warning: This is an extremely violent and brutal beating by the Fullerton Police, be aware before clicking this link!

Tonight over 100 people gathered tonight in solidarity with the Thomas family against the ruling, The LAist Magazine put together a piece on it with photos from live tweeters, and video.

The LA Times reports the FBI is now looking further into the case, as they had already begun to investigate in 2011 as to whether his rights were violated.

There are protests already being planned. Anonymous plans a protest Tues the 14th at 11am at the Fullerton Police Department https://www.facebook.com/events/607232352658522

We have also heard a community call out for Saturday the 18th at 10AM also at the Fullerton Police Department.

We must demand accountability, because obviously these kangaroo courts are not serving justice.

These monsters need to be held accountable for murders, brutal beatings, and psychological terror they have continued to perpetrate unabated against the people for far too long. Why are they not held accountable to the laws they are supposedly meant to uphold?

We live in a country that fears imaginary “terrorists” yet believe in police who are 100 times more likely to maim or kill you or someone you love. Anyone who supports these people also has blood on their hands.

I urge you to join these protests, as well as every protest for every victim. This is not ok, and our silence is consent! No more killer cops on our streets, or any streets!

RIP Kelly Thomas, we are going to keep fighting for justice.


“Activist” Threatens Me With The Police

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So how exactly am I supposed to deal with this?
Not sure what to say… so here are my feelings in memes.

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#J28 a year later.

Its January 29th 2013. I have been occupied for close to 500 days now, with no end in sight. A year ago yesterday was the one year anniversary of “Move In Day” in Oakland, which was a day that changed my life. I cannot believe it has been a year already since I felt the sting of teargas for the first time, was stunned by flash grenades, and ran from “less lethal” rounds. I went to Oakland, already well aware of the atrocities activists were facing, and had historically faced in this city. I knew about Scott Olsen, I knew about the violent evictions, multiple targeted arrests, and non stop political repression of the citizens of Oakland. As much as you can read about it, look at pictures, watch streams and videos of it, you really don’t know what it is like, until you face it yourself. And when you do, it changes you, it affects you on so many levels, and each person in such a unique way, it is hard to capture.

For myself the PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder) came in varying forms. It was apparent that the group I was traveling with was affected, when on our way home, a gas station attendant reminded us to pay for our gas over the loudspeaker, and we were sure they called for an “Unlawful Assembly”. Every loud noise made us jump, for me they still do. The nightmares soon followed, the police state invaded my dreams, night after night, waking up traumatized, sometimes shrieking or fighting in my sleep. But no matter how many bad dreams, or how badly the lights and sirens, and loud noises got to me, I couldn’t stay away. If anything going to Oakland, and experiencing the trauma I did at the hands of OPD, only made my will to go out and fight stronger.

Since J28, I had more than my fair share of being rioted upon by police, who claim they are trying to keep things peaceful. Police who have no qualms about drawing their baton, and hitting an innocent bystander. Police who yell at you that your causing unsafe traffic conditions, while running you over with their motorcycles, or cars. Acts of aggression sometimes so violent, it makes me question the humanity of these beings. How is it we have come to a world where “Law and Order” is upheld by bullies, who at times don’t even seem to be accountable to follow the laws they have sworn to uphold.

If you wonder why we’re shouting “Fuck The Police” you obviously are not paying attention to what is going on around you, or you would be shouting right along with us.

Why are we allowing ourselves to be governed by a system like this? Why do people keep insisting we can make it better, when all I see is a growing prison industrial complex, a growing police force, and privatization of these industries with little to no accountability. We are building prisons, while closing schools. Everything you can think of is being criminalized, and we are constantly expanding on this system, with no end in sight. Prisoners are nothing more than slaves to the corporations that run these prison complexes. The corporations do well for themselves, receiving money from the state for care of prisoners, then putting those prisoners to work, for little compensation, to manufacture goods, or provide services they may otherwise have to pay a living wage for. To see how few people are educated about this, or even care, saddens me, and makes me wonder what will it take for people to understand this issue, as it seems its only a matter of time before we are all incarcerated.

We as individuals are at a point where we really need to decide enough is enough, and stop giving up our freedom in the name of “security” because it is a false reality. We need to look into our own communities, and the effects this has on them. If the people cannot petition or protest their government for fear of retribution in the form of brutality, or imprisonment, then what kind of society have we built? I keep hearing people talk about fixing the system, and sure, I will always lend a hand to those who are actually trying, but it is so corrupt, so powerful, that it is no longer under the control of the people. Those who claim to represent us, represent no more than business interests of their investors, otherwise known as “campaign donors”. Even getting money out of politics isn’t enough when those who are already in it are not only taking money in the form of campaign contributions but also are funded under the table by special interest groups. So even if this “amendment” groups are working on passes, politicians will still find a way to take money from “investors” with agendas.

So being as I am so jaded with this system, and it feels like we have been “playing a glitch” for far too long. Its time to press the reset button.


Violent arrests, less lethal rounds, and teargas, in response to sidewalk chalk!

 

 

Words can’t even explain what down town Los Angeles was subjected to last night. It all started with some sidewalk chalk.

Prior to artwalk we had has 11 arrests in two weeks for chalking, and near 20 in the past month. Last night there were 11 arrests for chalking. The only person arrested from occupy was the first person who was arrested for chalking.

LAPD responded to the chalk with 60+ officers. Some people who were arrested for chalking last night did it in spite of watching others get grabbed around them. They were not occupiers, but they could see the tyranny and were not going to stand for it.

As the arrests grew, so did the police presence. As the police presence grew so did the crowd around them of angry bystanders who had seen people being arrested for chalking on the sidewalk, or who had themselves been shoved by the very aggressive police.

The main stream media is blaming occupy, saying LAPD was standing off with occupiers. That is false. In fact, many occupiers left after the first arrest, and headed to a fund raiser we were holding nearby. The people who were attacked by LAPD at artwalk were just the residents and visitors of Los Angeles.

Around 9:40 PM LAPD mobilized around 150 officers at 5th and Spring Streets. By then there were only a few occupiers, mostly media such as myself, and hundreds of angry LA residents. When the police mobilized so did the people, and they took the street. My estimate is the crowd was about 1200-1500 people. The police then violently arrested a small woman who dared to chalk a stick figure on the sidewalk. When the crowd saw this, they reacted.

Shots were fired, 40mm foam grenades, pepperspray rounds, and teargas, as they split the crowd in 3 to drive us away. Most of the people dispersed. Quite a few were injured by batons, and less lethal rounds. When I left there were maybe 20 people standing off with police, and about 100-200 in the bars, or watching from windows and balconies.

The entire scene was surreal. And it all started over washable sidewalk chalk. The most ironic part is there was light rain, and the chalk was washing away before the arrestees were even booked.

To watch what happened visit my ustream: http://www.ustream.tv/channel/savagetruth it is in parts, as the police seemed to be using signal jamming technology as well.

Don’t believe or spread the lies main stream media are telling. Let the truth be known, that we live in a fascist police state, and we need to stand up for our rights before we have none at all.


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