Note: This article was written before I had studied journalism.
Ah, since I last wrote what all has been going on? Parents for Occupy Seattle has established a learning tent, donations of toys and volunteer staffing are in place. We have marched, met, and reached out. The sanitation working group is having problems with people not recycling. Every night a group of 6-10 people volunteer to sort through the trash and salvage what recyclables and compost can be salvaged. Food is still free, though now you are required to bring your own bowl and silverware at the food tent. Food Not Bombs and other organizations and individuals are still bringing dishes and flatware however. Several hundred tents have stood unmolested since the move to SCCC. Many intend to retake Westlake Center soon.
Occupy Seattle was invited to a town hall meeting Saturday night. Not to be confused with the City Hall. It is a beautiful building and we packed it with some four or five hundred people. There was a bit of a hump to get over with a huge influx of new supporters. Feelings were briefly hurt, then shelved in the name of solidarity. In the end everyone was smiling and great discussions were had. Councilman Licata moderated and a panel of three occupiers and three politicians answered a barrage of questions each in turn and individuals from the crowd asserted their points in turn.
Our greatest recent victory was November 14, 2011. The City Council passed a resolution to actively seek sustainable banking procedures for city investments. This means both investing with local banks and also indicates a move towards a state owned banking system like that in North Dakota. In addition to this they voted in unanimous support of the Occupy Movement. Most every council member stood before the 200 core occupiers that showed in support and made personal requests that the Occupy movement find the strength to continue its action at least until elections in 2012, if not longer. You can watch the video on the City Hall website. Votes and counsel statements start at 72:00. Statements before that are from protesters. I highly encourage you find the Full Council video from November 14, 2011.
They say very plainly that in order for them to make effective change they will need our voices in the streets. I never thought I would become any sort of press gang but the facts are simple. There are some very evil things going on in our government and it is not only up to the Occupy movement but also up to you to fix them. Uncle Sam once again needs your help. The city council has personally and officially asked you to hit the streets, to indefinitely occupy public spaces. So if you can spare some time come downtown and join in on any number of activities, march, write, talk and donate, we need your help. The City of Seattle needs your help. We are now international leaders, the governments of the world and the USA are looking up to Seattle as the cutting edge of legislation. Email me for more info or ask any occupier, easily found at forums.occupyseattle.org.
So what is coming next? Many people will be heading south to Olympia where on the 28th of this month 2 billion dollars of public services will be cut, on top of already devastating recent cuts. As for my own work with the outreach group it is my belief that the Washington budget reduction alternatives list provides us not with a dismal future but with a road map. Where the document cuts childcare I will propose the empty office be occupied by volunteer child care providers. Where free medical clinics are shut down I will be recruiting volunteer physicians to occupy the void.