Occupy Cincinatti by Big 3 News
Cities' Occupy Encampment Evictions A 'Set-Up'?
by Ritt Goldstein
It's reported that the Occupy evictions were 'coordinated' through conference calls by city mayors, questions of who organized these calls remaining. What's also known is that 'the troubled' were encouraged by authorities to join Occupy, with many seizing upon the outcome of this as the 'manufactured pretext' for the recent nationwide sweeps.
With the 'homeless and troubled' having come to Occupy, bringing the kinds of issues they sadly too often mean, an 'excuse' for police action to evict Occupy developed, one that's been readily pounced upon. Of course, reports that 'the troubled' were sent to Occupy by police and other authorities have appeared, raising questions if Occupy was 'set-up' for both the ongoing evictions and the derailing of their original objective - the Banks and Wall Street.
As news reports of the moment widely tell of broad efforts by many cities to eliminate Occupy's encampments, some things are vital to recall, especially those suggesting that these eviction actions are being pursued under a 'manufactured pretext'.
Underpinning many of the cities' efforts are alleged public safety concerns about those within Occupy's camps, but the media has also reported upon how 'troubled' individuals have been urged by police to join Occupy. As a matter of fact, I wrote of this myself, " Occupy Facing 'Cloaked' Counterattacks ", and see such urgings of 'the troubled' by authorities as a mechanism to attempt to smear, disrupt and discredit Occupy, as well as provide the pretext for the kinds of eviction actions we're seeing.
Notably, Salt Lake City is one of those cities that has just moved against an Occupy encampment, the reason being a suspected drug overdose death there. While 19 SLC Occupiers were arrested, local KSL.com news reported that the deceased was a "homeless man identified only as 'Mike'".
There is a difference between the 'troubled and homeless' and those which have left their homes to struggle for justice.
What is of paramount importance to recall is that at first it was 'sanitation' issues that led the cities' efforts, though now that the 'troubled' have been 'seeded' within Occupy's camps, we have a new rationale supposedly demanding action. But as the Acting Legal Director of the Utah ACLU, Joe Cohn, told KSL, "We must ask, if someone died of an overdose at the homeless shelter, would they be closing the homeless shelter?"
I won't here raise the questions surrounding the coordination of the Occupy sweeps by the cities, but the fact of such a coordinated strike against Occupy speaks for itself.
Are the latest actions against Occupy, actions in Oakland, Portland, Denver, Salt Lake City, New York City, and further, motivated by a sincere desire to ensure public safety, or rather to strike another blow against Occupy, against 'we, the people', while using 'public safety' as a manufactured pretext? Dirty tricks against popular social justice movements are an old story, but what's relatively new are the dimensions of the wrongdoing that spawned the Occupy movement, the fact that we have the 'best politicians that money can buy', and the courageous determination of so many everyday people in the struggle to reclaim what is ours.
If any need reminder of how much our police care about the public's safety, this video of the graphic, November 9th police violence against students at Occupy Berkeley says more than I can. I will note that the video appears to show that valiant young women seem a favorite target for such police action.
Of course, one must examine anything in its context, and the 'Occupy Wall Street' movement is no exception.
In 2009 I wrote an article in The Christian Science Monitor about alternative banking, "Banking, the Swedish model". At the end I quoted a dire warning.