Make Art, Not War

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Soooo about that arrest last fall

This is the statement that I wrote up for the 7 of us protesters that were arrested last Oct. for Occupy Mpls. It is a little silly because I quote myself, but give me a break. I'm the only person I can contact at this hour. Okay? I'm not exactly looking forward to court, but hey, it's just another soap box, really. Might as well use it. Here goes:

Call for support of Occupy Mpls activists as US Bank 7 go to trial.

The first group of occupy protesters to be arrested locally will be going to court this week, starting Monday June 4th at 9am at the Hennepin County Government Center (also known as the building attached to the people’s plaza).  The 7 activists were arrested at a demonstration outside of the US Bank branch in downtown Minneapolis last fall, where they were protesting foreclosures and homelessness. US Bank foreclosed on 25,000 homes in Minnesota alone in 2010, forcing families into the streets. On October 20th 2011, 100+ protesters occupied the intersection of 2nd Ave and 6th St in front of the bank where several of them pitched tents and occupied them, demanding that housing is a human right. They are now facing criminal charges of obstruction of traffic.

Anti War Committee member Misty Rowan, who is one of the defendants, had this to say about the coming trial “It’s unfortunate that we live in a society that treats protesters like criminals for speaking out and calling attention to such practices, when the real criminals are the big banks that are forcing people out of their homes after being bailed out with our tax dollars. But it doesn’t matter. You cannot evict an idea whose time has come.”

Supporters are asked to fill the courtroom on Monday June 4th to show solidarity, and to call the prosecutor and demand that he drop the charges against the US Bank 7
Housing is a human right!

I am removing the prosecutors number because, as amusing as it is to bother him, calling him wont do much good. The pressure is coming from higher up (all the way up). If this is how Occupiers are going to be treated in this city, then we need to build a real campaign against unnecessarily heavy charges, and police misuse and misconduct, for those recently arrested at Occupy Homes actions, and for all of us moving forward. The rights to free speech and assembly are under attack in this country at every level, and taking this to trial is just one more way to put your foot down (my foot) and take a stand. It takes challenging the law to change it, and we need to push back against the police state that has taken hold. This battle isn't over. It has only just begun.

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