It’s starting to look like maybe Occupiers really are kind of violent and stuff?
Just kidding! Whenever something bad happens at a gathering of Occupiers, which is quite often, the wrongdoing is always committed by somebody who has nothing to with the movement. It’s the fault of infiltrators and hangers-on. No true Occupier would ever do anything wrong.
Keep that in mind as you read these stories. Reuters:
More than 400 anti-Wall Street protesters were arrested in Oakland during a night of skirmishes in which police fired tear gas and bean bag projectiles, the city said on Sunday, marking one of the biggest mass arrests since nationwide economic protests began last year…
Riot police on Saturday night fought running skirmishes with protesters, injuring three officers and at least one demonstrator.
The scuffles erupted in the afternoon as activists sought to take over a shuttered downtown convention center, sparking cat-and-mouse battles that lasted well into the night in a city that has seen tensions between police and protesters boil over repeatedly…
Police in riot gear moved in, firing smoke grenades, tear gas and bean-bag projectiles to drive the crowd back.
“Officers were pelted with bottles, metal pipe, rocks, spray cans, improvised explosive devices and burning flares,” the Oakland Police Department said in a statement.
Yes, but they were pelted with bottles, metal pipe, rocks, spray cans, improvised explosive devices, and burning flares peacefully. It doesn’t count as violence because you’re just a greedy fatcat who hates America.
Meanwhile, as Paul Conner reports from the other edge of the country:
The National Park Service essentially served an eviction notice Friday afternoon to Occupy Wall Street protesters inhabiting Washington, D.C.’s McPherson Square and Freedom Plaza.
The occupiers have until noon on Monday, Jan. 30 to clear out camping materials and make sure that any remaining structures have one side open. If they do not comply, they face arrest or property seizure by U.S. Park Police, the notice reads.
The “long-standing” Park Service regulations ban camping and the use of temporary camping structures. The rules have not changed, but the Park Service allowed the protesters to live in the parks since last fall.
And why is that? Why have the Occupiers been exempt from the same laws that apply to everybody else? Good question.
Probably because they’re such fine upstanding citizens and they’ve built up so much goodwill. They continued to improve their image on Saturday night, as ABC News reports:
President Barack Obama attended the 99th annual Alfalfa Club dinner Saturday evening. Comprised of a who’s who of Washington elite, the social club’s sole purpose is to meet every January for a night of banquet festivities for its roughly 200 members. Per tradition, each sitting president is invited to deliver remarks at the event…
Hundreds of Occupy DC protesters staged a rally outside the event, demonstrating against the perceived injustices of the city’s power brokers and heckling a number as they arrived, including Senator Joseph Lieberman.
The Connecticut lawmaker was showered in glitter as he approached the hotel. At one point during the rally, female protesters even took their shirts off as a taunt to police.
Makes sense: If you don’t have any bottles to throw, hit ’em with your cans. Either way, it proves you’re right because otherwise you wouldn’t be angry enough to make such a fool of yourself.
This actually qualifies as a positive news story for the Occupy movement, in that they didn’t injure anybody or destroy anybody’s property. How long can they keep up this being-slightly-less-awful streak? Let’s see what happens after noon today…
P.S. Here’s what happened at McPherson Square yesterday, when the cops put up notices to clear out and some kid started taking them down:
Note: Struggling with cops who are surrounding you does not count as “nothing wrong.” You don’t have to like it when they’re being mean to you and stuff, but that doesn’t absolve you of responsibility for your own actions.
By the way, you can get his t-shirt here. It’s not homophobia if you’re one of the good guys.