Update from the New York Times: .
Judge Upholds City’s Move to Block Camping at Protest Site
A state Supreme Court judge upheld the city’s right to enforce rules that bar the Occupy Wall Street protesters from camping at Zuccotti Park.
The judge, Michael D. Stallman, wrote in his ruling Tuesday afternoon, “The court is mindful of the movements’ First Amendment rights of freedom of speech and peaceable assembly.” But he added, quoting from another case, “Even protected speech is not equally permissible in all places and at all times.” He said that the protesters “had not demonstrated that the rules adopted by the owners of the property, concededly after the demonstrations began, are not reasonable time place and manner restrictions permitted under the First Amendment.”
Just as we suspected. (And BTW: in case you haven’t heard, just hours after the raid, a judge ordered the protestors — and their tents — to be allowed back into Zucotti Park; however, not being allowed back in to their home, protestors are roaming the streets of New York.) Here’s a list of other occupations that were taken down in last few days, from globalgrind.com:
-Police in riot gear arrested 50 people as they cleared a protest camp in Portland, Oregon on Sunday evening.
-Police in Burlington, Vermont, evicted demonstrators on Sunday, days after a military veteran shot himself dead inside a tent at their camp.
-Encampments in the cities of Denver, Colorado, and Salt Lake City, Utah, were cleared on Saturday.
-Lawyers for Occupy St. Louis in Missouri plan to take their bid to regain their downtown campsite to federal court on Tuesday after it was also cleared on Saturday.
Oakland Mayor Jean Quan (photo: Ella Baker Center)
November 15, 2011
Embattled Oakland Mayor Jean Quan, speaking in an interview with the BBC (excerpted on The Takeaway radio program–audio of Quan starts at the 5:30 mark), casually mentioned that she was on a conference call with leaders of 18 US cities shortly before a wave of raids broke up Occupy Wall Street encampments across the country. “I was recently on a conference call with 18 cities across the country who had the same situation. . . .”
Mayor Quan then rambles about how she “spoke with protestors in my city” who professed an interest in “separating from anarchists,” implying that her police action was helping this somehow.
Interestingly, Quan then essentially advocates that occupiers move to private spaces, and specifically cites Zuccotti Park as an example:
In New York City, it’s interesting that the Wall Street movement is actually on a private park, so they’re not, again, in the public domain, and they’re not infringing on the public’s right to use a public park.
Many witnesses to the wave of government crackdowns on numerous #occupy encampments have been wondering aloud if the rapid succession was more than a coincidence; Jean Quan’s casual remark seems to clearly imply that it was.
Might it also be more than a coincidence that this succession of police raids started after President Obama left the US for an extended tour of the Pacific Rim?