NYC General Assembly 2/18/2012 (Minutes)

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NYC GENERAL ASSEMBLY DAY 155
Location: 60 Wall Street Atrium; then Liberty Square
Facilitators: Justin and Nick (livestreamer Nick); then Nick and Anthony; then Nick and Carrie M at Liberty
Stack Taker: Josh; then Carrie M at Liberty
Time keeper: Carol
Vibes checker: Sean
Minutes: Carrie M

Summary:
Working Group Report Backs: Occupy the Bronx (Take Back the Bronx), Facilitation, Anthony, Accounting, Sean, Queering OWS
Proposal: March 17th Action, by Housing. Consensus
Proposal: Space, by Darrell Prince. Tabled.
Discussion: From the The Anti-Oppression Affinity Group. Discussed.
Emergency Proposal: To temporarily restrict Sage from participating in the movement. Not passed.

Working Group Report Backs:
Occupy the Bronx: Sumumba: Occupy the Bronx or Take Back the Bronx has consensed on becoming a working group in preparation of an all-borough GA. The purpose is to have more actions planned in communities instead of down here, to be more representative of the Occupy movement and make sure other occupations are not marginalized. They are as important as OWS. Stay tuned. We are going to Occupy Astoria and Occupy Sunset Park soon.
Facilitation: Corey: Because of a holiday on Monday, it has been hard to find space for Spokes Council, so there is chance we might have to cancel it. We are going to find out by tomorrow 7pm if there is going to be a space. If not, it will be on NYCGA.net and blasted out through ComHub. Check back.
Anthony: The Solidarity with Arab Spring action was good. We had 50 people at most. But the action was good. We went from the Egypt consulate to one from Yemen to the Tunisian and Syrian ones. The Tunisian people were really nice and gave them food. There are actions at the Syrian consulate every Friday until there’s a resolution the Syrian people want.
Sean: They [not sure which working group] found out yesterday that Westboro Baptist Church was going to make a mess about Whitney Houston’s funeral. They were prepared to go and shut down the Westboro protest. Westboro didn’t show, but they still declare victory.
Queering OWS: On #F16 they had action, a PR event. They had planned a march, but it rained so … had poor turnout but was a grand success.

Proposal:
March 17th Action. Brought by Housing
Accepted friendly amendments: To connect with the NYC St. Patrick’s Day parade, to coordinate with Direct Action (which might also be planning an anniversary action that day), to incorporate Black History Month, and to coordinate with food organizations.
Result: Consensus

Proposal:
Space. Brought by Darrell Prince.
There were breakout groups, then consensus process (clarifying questions, concerns, and friendly amendments).
Result: Tabled

Breakout Discussion:
Anti-Oppression. Brought by a subgroup of the Facilitation Working Group
Discussion question: “Oppression,” “marginalization” and “privilege”: What do these words mean to you, and is that different from how you’ve heard them used in OWS?
Result: Discussed.

Emergency Proposal:
Original proposal: To temporarily remove Sage from Occupy Wall Street until the grievance committee process is set up.
Moved through consensus process (clarifying questions, concerns, and friendly amendments).
Proposal as restated by proposer after friendly amendments: To temporarily restrict Sage from participating in the OWS system and facilities (meaning all the services and participation as outlined in the proposal at Spokes Council on 1/18 that passed to restrict another occupier). After one month, someone can bring a proposal to reinstate him.
Result: 12 standasides; then 10 blocks. Moved to modified consensus. 11 no votes, 16 yes votes. Does not pass.

8 Responses to “NYC General Assembly 2/18/2012 (Minutes)”

  1. Steve Scher

    curious, was sage present for any part of the above, and if yes, did he speak to the proposal involving himself himself ? ( yes, that techniqually is correct english) :D

  2. Monica McLaughlin

    Why is low turnout for an event still considered by some to be a success? Do they mean that they are sucessful on a personal level? To suceed as a movement will require many, many people turning out for events.

  3. Steve Scher

    yes monica
    it can be
    do you wish to discuss that here in a thread devoted to minutes of a meeting ?

  4. CarrieM213

    Also, Steve, to be clear, Sage showed up to this General Assembly meeting as we were finishing the breakout discussions on anti-oppression. He immediately demanded to speak, out of process. In order to smooth things over, the Facilitation team gave him 2 minutes to speak about the issue. Instead, he continued yelling at everyone. So one Facilitator, Justin, went over to him calmly to try to deescalate the issue. When he was a few feet away, Sage stood up, took 2 running steps, and head-butted the facilitator in the chest, knocking him to the ground.

    After the ensuing confusion and shouting by the whole assembly, the group decided that rather than going on with the original agenda. We needed to deal right then with the violence that had again happened in our midst (again–not the first time even that WEEK that Sage had been involved in violence during a meeting). So that’s when an emergency proposal was brought to deny Sage participation in OWS services and meetings, to create a safe space for all of us.

    The meeting then moved to Liberty Square to continue the proposal process on the matter. Since Justin was understandably upset by being assaulted, I stepped up from minutes-taker to facilitator. We gave Sage the same opportunity to speak as everyone else, during clarifying questions, concerns, friendly amendments, as a standaside, and as a block. Some people didn’t want him to speak, and it wasn’t a trial but as a member of the assembly, he had the right to speak, and he did.

    Just trying to fill in a little more information that doesn’t appear in this minutes summary!

    Postscript, just as the GA was ending, another member of the community punched the LibertySqGA live-tweeter in the face.

  5. Lopi

    we’ve created a monster. by allowing sage special leeway by the lack of enforcing meeting protocol, he has come to believe that he has special permission to speak out of turn during meetings, disrupt meetings and generally make a nuisance of himself. It seems he gets great pleasure out of the attention these disruptions cause. Many many times I have seen this take place: sage speaking out of process, many points of process raised, facilitators say, just let him speak, and then he speaks on and on. This has happened at least 500 times. It’s now habitual.
    It seems a new habit is forming due to lack of accountability (aka consequences) Now, he is finding out that he can assault people physically too and get away with it. There have been two so far in just one week. There will be more and they will likely increase in intensity each time.

    It is up to the community to teach him that there are consequences to violent behavior. Ostracizing him from group activities is the obvious choice. I am now avoiding general assembly because of this lack of response by the community. And to all of you that blocked eliminating Sage from OWS activities for a month. Y’all are co-dependent. Dude is violent.

    Ps. Jeff, who punched Dicey in the face after Dicey stood in his face daring him to punch him, has voluntarily removed himself from the GA and other OWS functions. De-escalation told me. What he did also has consequences. How he is facing them is an example of how someone who majorly fucked up ought to be accountable. Sage, in contrast, since these two assaults, is not humbled, is not sorry, shows no sign of realizing that what he did is fucked up. Instead, he continues to run his mouth all up and down the block. He shows no remorse. Instead, he is trying to justify his actions, blaming the people he attacked for making him “upset”

    This is bullshit. If this community can’t live up to it’s own principle of non-violence by tolerating violence within our meetings, it’s very base is hypocritical. This hypocrisy will destroy us if we dont destroy it first

  6. sumumba

    wow didnt know that about Jeff….cant believe he fell for that….Trish tried that with me on saturday…by telling me ‘what are you going to do about it!’ or sumthin to that effect…this is OBVIOUS provocateur(ish) BEHAVIOR WE shouldnt fall for….but so true LOPI…about the ‘monster’ we’ve created or allowed to exist….NO other GA in the city operates as dysfunctional as ours…and its sad…but FRIDAY there will be a meeting/discussion/dialouge entitled: IS OWS A FRINGE OR MASS MOVEMENT? @ 7PM 60 WALL come check it out..