AGENDA: 1. M12 2. TRINITY CHURCH 3. PLUS BRIGADES 4. DIRECT ACTION PRIORITIES 5. INCREASING PARTICIPATION IN DIRECT ACTION 6. DIRECT ACTION INVOLVEMENT WITH GENERAL ASSEMBLY 7. DIRECT ACTION MEETING TIMES-PROPOSAL FOR AMENDING TIMES/ PLACES
1. M12 -May 12 is a worldwide day of action called for by the Indignados. While the indignados anniversary is on May 15 they are calling for solidarity in a worldwide day of action to include mainly re-occupying public spaces. -There are already actions being planned for that week and for May 12. A flyer was passed around listing the following actions: May 10-Opening General Assembly, May 11-Homes, Jobs, & Services, May 12-Food, Environment, & Health Global Day of Action, May 13-Police Brutality, Mass Incarceration, War & Immigrant Justice, May 14- Education and Student Debt, May 15-Global Day of Action. More information on these actions can be found at www.anothernyc.org.
2. TRINITY CHURCH -24 protestors were arrested on D17 at duarte square and are facing criminal trespass charges. The court date is June 11, 2012. The Rector/ CEO of Trinity was approached in public and in private. He was asked to drop the charges against the protestors and he declined. These protestors are facing sentences of weeks to months. -Ideas for actions were discussed to apply pressure to Trinity in the hopes of getting the charges dropped. The ideas for actions were: a weekly picket to coincide with the weekly peoples gong on wednesdays, singing and pamphleteering at the church targeting the parishioners, and occupying the sidewalk outside of trinity as hunger strikers did in the past, a book bloc using the bible as a prop. -Some comments about this were: that we should focus on separating the body (parishioners) of the church from the hierarchy of the church by illuminating to the body what the head is doing; a concern was voiced about a church being a target of direct action; occupy faith and other groups have discussed sending laity of other faiths to occupy attend the services there to illuminate this issue, a concern was raised that direct action is taking on too many small fights.
3. PLUS BRIGADES -meeting this saturday to discuss what are the goals/ ideas of plus brigades and to see what the plus brigade/ direct action interplay should or could look like. -a comment was made that plus brigades is a great way to add fun and play to activism with street theatre, fun, and games. -a comment was made that as some of those who have played an active role begin to step aside that new people need to be empowered and empower themselves to step up. -an idea was raised that the plus brigades meetings take place with direct action meetings to simplify things. -an idea was raised that plus brigades do more games, like consensus people chess, or silent ninja, just for fun.
4. DIRECT ACTION PRIORITIES – a comment was made that ows/ direct action should make a list of priorities of things that need changed in the world and how we can affect them. -a comment was made that direct action should empower others to step up and take direct action. possibly doing more outreach in the boroughs to empower many groups who already exist and are looking for a way to take action and create change in the world. -a comment was made that there is no harm in repeating actions, and in fact it is necessary. why not continue with action against the same target until they make changes. -a comment was made that global issues aren’t the strength of this group that we need to focus on more local issues. such as the auctions. things where we can get tangible results like with homelessness, sleeping on wall street, etc. -an idea was raised that during summer disobedience school direct action train on how to use mutual aid as a form of direct action. demonstrating mutual aid behaviors. -a comment was made that we need more big wins to bring people into the movement, that we are too scattered and have no central mechanism. -a comment was made the we need to be focused and legible. And that bringing new people in to step up would work better if we were more consistent.
5. INCREASING PARTICIPATION IN DIRECT ACTION -a comment was made that it needs to be more accessible to bring people in. some tools for this are: focusing, apprenticeships/ mentoring partnerships, central geographical location, consistent meeting times/ places. -a comment was made that we should use summer as an outreach opportunity. Go to coney island, queens, city island etc. to do plus brigade actions to show others what is going on and how they can plug in. -a comment was made that we should not burn people out who are willing to help and that others should step up when someone steps back. -a comment was made that we need to address world problems and solutions, that people come to direct action because they want to feel like they are going to change the world.
6. DIRECT ACTION INVOLVEMENT IN THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY -a comment was made that the GA didnt exist in any form that was supported by the main body. -a comment was made that there are too many actions being planned for each to go before the GA for consensus. -a comment was made that the GA gave direct action the imperative to operate autonomously from day one of occupy wall street. -a comment was made that for a while direct action would give an ‘approval’ to actions of other groups so the other groups would know they were a part of occupy and not a third party, but this became too restrictive so the practice was dropped.
7. DIRECT ACTION MEETINGS – The following proposal was put forth:
Direct Action meetings be changed to Wednesdays @ Liberty Square from 5:30-730 following the peoples gong and cardboard roses and Saturday at the location of summer school, (at liberty until summer school begins) from 4-6p following summer disobedience school and that other working groups are informed of the wednesday meeting and invited to move their meeting times to Wednesday so they will coincide with direct actions so that we can coordinate and communicate with each other in Liberty Square. Also, a person should be appointed each week to take A out for a beer following the saturday meeting, as he rreeeeaaalllly misses his weekends. -the proposal was overwhelmingly consensed upon with no stand asides and no blocks. -an idea was raised that a flyer be made listing all of the direct action meetings and times to be circulated among everyone especially occupiers.
ANNOUNCEMENTS: -Monday at 2pm there is a meeting on Federal Hall steps for a preliminary meeting to coordinate mutual aid/ scheduling/ clothing etc. for those occupying and planning in the financial district. -Bank of America (Bad for America) shareholders meeting is on May 9. Buses and people are leaving on May 7th and returning on May 10. -May 11 an action is taking place at Merril Lynch with a picnic at Goldman Sachs (the vampire squid) ball field afterward. anyone who has access to sporting good, food, etc. please contact A. -Cardboard Roses has an ongoing action involving civil disobedience (actually no laws are being broken but arrests are being made). Contact M if you would like to tell your story and lay down on the sidewalk and possibly be arrested. -May 7 is a summer disobedience school meeting @ 16 Beaver street from 5-8pm. -This past friday there was an action at Attorney General Eric Schneidermans office. 4 were arrested and spent 26 hours in jail. A mentioned the issue about the AG’s being tasked with investigating the mortgage crisis. Those arrested are going to try to get the AG to drop the charges and if he refuses they will seek his representation for their court cases.