I wrote part 1 of this post this afternoon after reading all about the raid on the Occupy Oakland camp. I was ready for a peaceful evening at home, but on my way through downtown I came across the protest march, just as it passed into Oscar Grant Plaza (formerly Frank Ogawa Plaza). I spent the rest of the evening grabbing as many pictures, video, and notes as I could about the ensuing debacle.
I don’t have time to write much tonight, but the video and pictures tell a decent tale. The protesters repeatedly marched on the Plaza, and the police repeatedly hit them with tear gas, rubber bullets, and bean bag guns (judging from the wounds I saw). Ghetto rides blasting “fuck the police” patrolled the outskirts of the area next to lute players in Guy Fawkes masks (they cheered each other). For all I saw (most of it) the protesters remained peaceful and brave. Reporters on the scene spoke of late night press conferences in which the police claimed widespread violence on the part of the protesters. Medics from the occupy oakland camp (I think) were on hand to treat tear gas and lacerations sustained by the protesters, though several were sent to the hospital. Over 100 were arrested by 9pm, and many more are sure to be arrested now. I left the protest around 11pm, and a core group was still standing in the plaza at that time. Whatever happens during the rest of the night, the protest is set to begin again tomorrow (October 26) at 6pm in Oscar Grant Plaza.