5 Bits of Recent News from Occupy Phoenix–
The encampment may be over, but the movement is alive!
Want to know what’s been going on with OccupyPHX? Here’s some news on five recent events and actions from the past two months!
Around Valentine’s Day, members of Occupy Phoenix marched through the entertainment district of Downtown Scottsdale to protest the killing of unarmed John Loxas by Scottsdale Police Officer James Peters. As many people probably know, John Loxas, 50, was shot and killed WHILE HOLDING AN INFANT. Jason Leonard, a lawyer in Fort Myers, FL, was quotes in The Huffington Post as saying: “My concern is that he seems to shoot first and ask questions later and has been supported in this policy [by the police system of Arizona].”
Over 60 people joined the protest and vigil. One protester was arrested, though the reasoning was considered VERY suspect and many Occupiers called foul. More information can be found at Demonix. Video of the march can also be found below:
The Guadalupe Street Clean Up has continued! The photo below is from the February 26th clean up. OccupyPHX members continue to help out their communities in need. Check out the OccupyPHX calendar for the next clean-up event and how you can help!
Of course, the BIG protest was on February 29 (#F29) when Occupy Phoenix was part of the NATIONWIDE protest against ALEC (the American Legislative Exchange Council).
This was a HUGE event for OccupyPHX. We were back to early numbers, as so many felt passionately about how ALEC directly affects Arizona and AZ legislation. Over 200 people showed up to let their voices be heard! Occupy member Joya Scott kicked off the event with a press conference:
“In many ways, we know that these are only aspirational demands. We know that corporate power and privilege do not give up their position willingly. But we believe it is absolutely necessary to envision and speak of a more just world so we can work toward creating it in our communities. We demand that ALEC must disclose all records of its meetings, transactions and model-bill development in public forums in communities across America. ALEC non profit charter will be revoked and the organization will pay taxes on all income accumulated while operating as a nonprofit. ALEC members will be investigated on ethics and corruption charges by a third-party, non-partisan commission made up of average people — community members like the folks in this crowd.”
Occupy members then marched across downtown Phoenix to visit ALEC members such as Freeport McMoran, US Airways, and Wells Fargo. Video of the protest can be found below from the OccupyPHX YouTube. There was also (surprisingly) good coverage from the local FOX 10 station.
Perhaps equally exciting, Occupy members were also able to let ALEC members know IN PERSON how they felt! That evening, Occupy Phoenix supporters were able to get into a private ALEC dinner and disrupt it with chanting. Video can be found on the OccupyPHX facebook page.
The next big event was the Ides of March (March 15th) Bank of America protest! There was great coverage and community involvement beforehand with ASU and local radio. Check out this great interview with OccupyPHX members!
OccupyPHX protesters ”foreclosed” on one of the most foreclosure-happy banks in history. A lot of good energy and healthy anger!
Most recently, Occupy Phoenix also had a march in Tempe in solidarity with Occupy Wall Street. Many OWS protesters were beaten and brutally arrested when they tried to re-occupy Zuccotti Park. Occupy Phoenix has seen its fair share of police brutality and arrests, and we know there is no excuse for that level of police force with peaceful protesters.
The Tempe march was a huge success, and there will be more Occupy Phoenix events to come!
Check the schedule and stay tuned.