GA Minutes 11.13.11

Categories: GA Minutes, General Assembly

Oakland General Assembly


Arrival Time:  6:00

Approximate Head Count: 180


INTERGENERATIONAL BLESSING (6:25): We want to offer support and guidance as elders.  We want to honor the Ohlone lands on which we stand.  (Tells history of Oakland and how the land changed hands throughout the centuries).  Ancestral Blessing: “You are loved, you are a blessing, and you are sacred the way you are.  You have dignity.  You bring wisdom and gifts to share.”


WELCOME (6:40)

This is the General Assembly.  It is based on Participatory Democracy.  As you are aware, this camp could be cleared out.  In case that happens, meet at the library at 4pm.  Call 415-285-1011 in case you are arrested or in case you see an arrest.  Text “bayaction” to 41411 to receive text-updates.  Text the Medic Hotline in case medics are needed: 510-712-8129


This is how it works (description read regarding participation, the assembly, committees, etc).  This is who will do each role tonight (reads off who will facilitate, keep time, take stack, and be crowd advocates).



  1. Welcome
  2. Committee Report Backs
  3. Proposals: Sanctuary for all Immigrants; St. Paul’s Principles
  4. Forum: What to do after a raid?
  5. Action/General Announcements


SPECIAL ANNOUNCEMENTS: Solidarity Statement from Mexico – We see the struggles in the United States and we see the connection between the monies in narco-traffic being contributed toward the bank bailout in 2008 in the US.  We are fighting global capitalism with resistance (with demonstrations and encampments).



  • Sound Committee: We have a safe communal space for storing expensive items.  Please come and find us if you need us.
  • Occupy Legal/NLG: Do not call the hotline with false alarms or suspicions.  Call the hotline when there are several police or police present in riot gear ready to take action.  The ACLU and NLG are looking at lawsuits that will hinder what the police can do (not in the same of the movement).
  • Solidarity Support Committee: We meet on Tuesday at noon at the SF Pizza place.  Two people were bonded out of jail last week.
  • Events: We meet 1pm at the Rising Loafer.  If it is closed, we go to Brown Couch Café.
  • Media: We are scattered!  Meet with me:  I have a problem with this process at GA: the people at camp who are going to be raided are not involved in the process.
  • QPOC/POC: We meet at 400 Franklin, T/TH/Sun (time??).  Candlelight vigil 11/17, 7pm.
  • Business Liaison: We want to support businesses close to the plaza.  We meet on Monday at the Rising Loafer@4pm.  Day of action – Black Friday boycott of corporate stores.
  • Labor Solidarity: Today we talked about having a picket to defend the camp.  The Labor Rally on Nov. 19th will be at 2pm.  Tomorrow we meet at 6pm in the plaza.
  • Facilitation: We meet at noon M/W/F/Sun.  Contact us:  or We are trying to have a more accessible time for GA on Sundays.  We are working on creating an expedited process for financial decisions.  We are looking for a place to hold GA in case of rain.  We are also looking into outreach.
  • Reclamation: We will meet Wednesday@ 5pm at the steps. We provide information about foreclosure defense.
  • Kitchen: We need help!  We collect compost.  WE are trying to create an offsite facility to deal with it, but in the meantime if you can pick up compost, contact me.
  • Labor: We need to mobilize for November 19th, 2pm.  We meet tomorrow at 6pm at the plaza.
  • Cleanup Crew/Peace Keeper: Clean up around the area.  Clean up behind yourselves.
  • Supply: M/W/F 3pm, we meet!  Starting tomorrow night we will have a mailing address for shipping.  We’ll have a storage area offsite.
  • Finance: T/Th at SF Pizza @6pm.  We raised $17,000.  We will be reporting monies each week.
  • Info Tent:
  • CoCo:  Committees and subcommittees: please send a representative to our meeting.  We will meet 4pm Wednesday and every Sunday.


PROPOSALS (7:30 pm)

  • We have cultivated a modified consensus making process. (Explains)
  • Submit proposals to, or submit in person on paper.  Three or more people must endorse a proposal and be present during its presentation to the GA.
  • This is how we run the GA (explains process, hand signals, vote count, etc).


1. Sanctuary City For Immigrants: We declare this movement a sanctuary for all people with or without papers.  We welcome all to join this movement and we show solidarity with the immigrant rights movement.  We stand against ICE raids.

  • Clarifying Questions and Answers
    • How can we provide protection? – We have a mass of people to already protect ourselves against the police. We are extending that.
    • How will we talk to the police if they won’t talk to us?  – We don’t want to talk to them – we want to keep them out and stop the harassment.
    • If we all go to jail tonight, are we going to give our names? – I can’t answer that question, but we need to protect anyone who gets deported.
    • How can we distinguish ourselves from violent protestors? – That’s not a part of this conversation.
    • How far can we go to get this proposal through? – We can take this up to protect each other.
    • Pros
      • We need to stand together.  We are Americans – we want to work, pay taxes, and help make a better country.
      • I support this proposal, and I would like to contribute to some community outreach.
      • We have power collectively and we need to extend that power to people who might not have it.
      • Cons
        • How do we protect people from arrest/immigration if they come into this space…?
        •  We have to take it seriously when we claim to offer protection to people.
        • If we use tactics that draw police attention, it will be difficult to offer sanctuary.




Yes: 215

No:  8

Abstain:  11


  1. St. Paul Principles: 1. Respect for a diversity of tactics.  2. Separation of time or space depending on actions. Tactics are specific to immediate goals.  3. No denouncement of fellow activists or events to the media. We agree not to assist law enforcement; we are against surveillance, etc.  
  • Clarifying Questions and Answers
    • What does diversity of tactics include?  Are there boundaries?
    • Will this be posted on the website? – Everything we do is posted.
    • What does number 2 really mean? – People could plan their actions together in a spokescouncil fashion so that everyone’s actions are respected.
    • Is vandalism condemned?  How will it be enforced? – This is trying to create a space where we can assert ourselves and be respectful of a collective setting.  We will leave it up to us to decide what these mean.
    • Is it implied that violent actions could be condemned in front of the media?
    • Does #3 mean we could not denounce Black Bloc tactics in front of the media – No, it would not be appropriate.  We can talk about it amongst each other.
    • Pros
      • I want to be in a fluid situation – I don’t want to be wedded to violence or to nonviolence.
      • The first principle we have; the other three build on it.
      • Accept your cousin who is crazy; don’t talk about family business outside of the family.
      • We shouldn’t denounce each other to the media, and we shouldn’t snitch each other out to the cops.
      • I am not going to condemn any form of resistance.
      • Cons
        • We’re concerned about not talking to the press – it borders on censorship.
        • How do you prevent people from taking independent action?
        • Perhaps we could vote on these separately.
        • This sounds like a “code of silence.”
        • Would diversity of tactics leave out a diversity of people?
        • Some of this is vague – what does “diversity of tactics” mean?
        • We need to denounce violence strongly.
        • What counts as corporate media?  KQED?  Facebook?
        • Response
          • We are not voting on spokes-councils or anything else.  We are voting on the 4 points.
          • We brought up this proposal to have this discussion, whether or not it passes.


Point of Clarification: In the early general assemblies (at Mosswood Park) before we took this space, it was agreed that we would operate under a diversity of tactics.  This assembly never agreed to diversity of tactics. This assembly has never agreed to strict nonviolence.




Yes: 130

No:  84

Abstain:  37






(I left at the beginning of forum.  I left this meeting well before it was adjourned).






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