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Occupy Houston Commentary On Felony Charges For Civil Disobedience

Occupy Houston and Occupy Austin protestors are facing felony charges for taking part in civil disobedience earlier this month outside the Port of Houston. The felony charges had at first been dismissed by a judge, but have now be reinstated by a Harris County grand jury empanelled by the Harris County District Attorney’s office.

There is little doubt in my mind that these charges are about scaring off further acts of protest in our county. This is an issue that should be of concern to politically involved people on all sides of the aisle. The rights of all are at risk when any group of people is singled out for excessive punishment by those in power.

These excessive charges should be recalled when anybody gets to thinking that incumbent Harris County DA Pat Lykos is somehow more moderate or reasonable than others who have held her office in recent years.

While we are all busy with the holidays, we cannot forget these Occupy patriots who are now facing serious jail time for charges that were at one point dismissed.

Below is the full Occupy Houston website commentary on the arrests —

Now that we’ve hit national news, thanks to MSNBC, I believe it’s worth collating some pieces of reality together for anyone confused about the happenings of GULFPORT ACTION and #D12 here in the mighty H-Town.

The inspiration came from the first of recent port shutdowns in Oakland. In Houston,  though less fierce, we were still interested in getting noticed. Interestingly, it may make for different news than we originally planned for (which is okay).  For both Austin and Houston, on December 12th, Occupy Gulf Port day, arrestees were detained and jailed for “use of a criminal instrument” (according to legal record), something that didn’t get reported by Oakland or the other port occupations across the nation. The schedule for the day was set down like thus.

If you aren’t yet familiar with this “criminal instrument” in reference here, the tactic is called the “sleeping dragon.”  Protestors on #D12 used this to stay chained (voluntarily) by PVC pipe, arm by arm, while laying down in the road. This way, they make it much harder to individually zip-tie and arrest in isolated fashion.

example of the sleeping dragon tactic which has sparked a controversy over what is considered a felony

All things come to a close; in this case, the doors were literally closed. In the midst of the human mic loud at work, HPD officers block off the crowd from the people in the street and erect an inflatable red isolation room, as seen in this video. Interestingly, this was also the first example, at least in Houston, of the Police and Fire Dept working together to erect an inflatable tent (ah the irony). Why?

According to John Cannon, HPD Spokesman, it “was placed over the protesters to prevent sparks” while Houston Fire Dept. cut through the PVC links. Really? I feel like there’s more to it than that. This is a great tool for crowd control and privacy from the omnipresent electronic eye, determined to record every piece of the happenings of the day, bound to wind up on the internet for thousands to view and rally next to. It’s a shiesty method to block off news cameras–even the choppers in the sky had issues seeing in. I can’t help but remember Nov. 15th, the night  #OWS got ousted from Liberty Square and the NYPD literally corralled the media crews to prevent them from seeing the whole scene. Hey, even a woman got punched that morning, after they already had a court order to come back into the park. I was listening to my police scanner app and tweeting until 3am CST. Continue reading

December 22, 2011 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , | 3 Comments

Photos From 12th Day Of Occupy Houston—Occupy Wall Street Protests Taking Place Across The Nation

Here are some pictures from the 12th day of Occupy Houston.

I took these pictures a few hours ago.

Below—When I went to Occupy Houston this time around, there were about 35 people taking part. This is at Tranquility Park in Downtown Houston.  In talking to a few people I’ve gotten to know, I was told that the crowd ebbs and flows based on the time of day and what is taking place. Occupy Houston is not as big as other Occupy efforts across the nation. On the other hand, the people involved in Occupy Houston seem on-board for the foreseeable future. They have stuck it out through rain and heat. Given that this movement had never even bveen heard of a few weeks ago, I’d say they are doing well. And you never know when something will take off even more successfully.

You can stop on by Tranquilty Park yourself to say hello and to lend your support.

Below–Some signs on display at Occupy Houston. Do you really imagine that your retirement will work if you don’t have Social Security? Who gets a pension anymore? Can you be sure that your 401k money will be there when you are set to retire? The markerts swing up and down all the time.

Below–Somebody donated a flat screen TV to Occupy Houston. I hope they can keep that thing dry the next time it rains. Occupy has been showing videos and movies on that TV. When I took that picture, the Occupy Houston livestream was what was being shown. So that is me taking the picture on the TV.

Below–The fellow citizen you see in that picture brought his own stuff to Occupy Houston. He then procceded to make his own signs. Nothing is more central to the ork of freedom than the decsion of each individual to work with others for a better nation and a better world.  The work of freedom is up to each of us.

Here is a previous round of pictures from Occupy Houston. Here are pictures from the first day.

Here is the Occupy Houston website.

Occupy Houston is planning various events siuch as an acoustic night and movies related to the ideas behind Occupy Wall Street.

There is also an Occupy Houston Facebook page.

Here is the Occupy Galveston blog.

Here is the Occupy Wall Street website.

Here is why I support the Occupy movement.

Here is how you can start an Occupy movement in the city, town or suburb where you live.

The New York Times reports that Occupy Wall Street is discussing specific dmands as the movement grows.

This article also discusses a process of more specific demnads that has taken place at Occupy Austin.

From the report—

“In Austin, Tex., participants agreed on four demands, including an end to corporate personhood and tax reform. One Austin activist, Lauren Walker, linked the movement’s goals directly to government officials. “This is our time because we’re coming up to the 2012 elections,” she said, suggesting that protesters saw the presidential election as a “deadline” ….” 

Follow Occupy Wall Street and related efforts around the nation and see what you think

Find an Occupy movement near you and get involved.

October 18, 2011 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , | 1 Comment