Friday, May 4, 2012

M1GS Los Angeles Police Presence

I have separated police activity from the main M1GS post to keep their oppression apart from our accomplishment and great mood. They tried but could not spoil it.

Shortly after we had set up Convergence, police had blocked off the adjacent intersection:

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Photo by Damon:


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"Hello, DHS? You were right; I can see hundreds of terrorists."

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They're always excited to see us:

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I have plenty of video not yet edited; please check back until you see some here.

Shortly after Convergence began settling down and taking care of the homeless, someone yelled and people turned; behind us in the street were two police cars with officers streaming out, one of them holding at the ready, a shotgun (not "less-lethal", which are characterized by green stocks, etc.). Two local people had already been pressed to the store shutters across the street and were being frisked. Apparently, someone called in a warning about someone carrying a weapon.

I'm so glad this guy gets a smile out of his job. We certainly do not. Which of course is their intent.

Photo by Damon:


Cops began photographing Occupiers on the other side of the street from the pat-down then occuring. Police also began raising their voices at the Occupiers. Someone called out "Don't feed the trolls" and that ended. Eventually, the men who were being searched were allowed to leave.

Someone shouted out "your intimidation tactics aren't working" and this call then resounded. Cops eventually left, and the mood of the party had not diminished.

We were at the gateway to Skid Row, guests of LA Community Action Network. A friend of Occupy Skid Row told myself and Damon, an excellent photographer, that one particular man in a grey hoodie was a known cop. We set up and got photos and video.

Photo by Damon:


Throughout Convergence, cops in civilian gear watched us for long periods of time from various levels of the parking structure above.

Photo by Damon:


Cops had the adjacent intersection blocked.

The Winds began arriving and came through. We eventually set out to march.

While we marched, cops repeatedly pushed into our mass be they on foot, bicycle, or motorcycle. This is reckless and could cause injury to peaceful citizens. I doubt anyone could mistake it for anything other than provocation, especially considering it is now a proven, standard tactic for them to upset and escalate peaceful situations in order to create arrests. Which is terrorism: the use of violence and fear to get people to change their behavior, to achieve a political end. They shove into crowds of Occupiers in NYC with bikes and horses all the time. They did it in Denver when they attempted to clear the camp.

Of course, in our smaller marches, when someone sets foot in the street that's usually good enough for someone to get a ticket or even arrested. Odd how the law only works one way!

Photo by Damon:


Eventually sickening of this repeated bullying, Occupiers lay on the sidewalk ahead of the offending police. Photo by Damon:


The sidestreets all along the downtown main arteries were all blocked by police phalanx. There was no allowing free people expressing their rights to choose their own path. Which of course, is not freedom at all. Photos by Damon:







The next photo is by William Carmago:

M1GS baton cop by William Camargo






As we passed the bank tower area on Grand Avenue, someone looked down at the lower level through the split in the road. Suh-prahs, suh-prahs, suh-prahs! Dozens of cop cars. This is only a small section of what we saw:

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Riot-geared sheriffs brought their DHS-provided armored vehicle. "I love a man in a uniform...the girls, they love to see you shoot!" -Gang of Four

Photo by Damon:


Counterterrorism? Yep, I saw all sorts of terrorists fleeing at the sight, waving their fists in the air, shouting "Curses, foiled again!"

Terrorists. What terrorists? Fuck the DHS! Photos by Damon:





My photos of the Pershing Square and related presence:

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Everybody loves a bike helmet camera!

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sheriffs parked the ridiculous attack vehicle across the street from Pershing Square, no doubt upsetting all who exited the adjacent subway terminal, for hours on end:

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Look at that line of police cars:

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Someone mentioned to me what it cost us citizens to pay for this level of police presence; it was an amazing amount of money, wish I could remember the exact figure. I was stunned at the hourly rate.

Once they had established a presence at Pershing Square's perimeter, they stayed for hours. They were blocking sidestreets north past 3rd street (Pershing is at 5th).

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At a bit after 10PM, a friend and I wandered down Grand, several blocks away from Pershing Square. We found stationed dozens upon dozens of police cruisers and cycle cops, just waiting for a call to fun. No thank you!

PHOTO COLLECTIONS featuring more police than you'd want to see:

Damon's photostream: North Wind, Convergence, Pershing Square

Nick Bates' set; "Entire set will be uploaded to as soon as humanly possible."

Nowhere Man's set

Allan Eaton's East Wind, Convergence, Pershing Square set

Giovanni Solis' set