A woman shared her story of being arrested at Occupy Oakland.
Why I got arrested at Oscar Grant Plaza | Occupied Oakland Tribune
Very early on the morning of November 14, I stood on the edge of the Occupy Oakland encampment in Oscar Grant Plaza and listened to reports that hundreds of riot police were approaching. Admittedly, I was nervous, and I had plans to disappear the moment I faced the possibility of being arrested.
Yet, a few moments later as I watched the police close in, I began to think about what their presence meant, and I began to imagine the disappearance of the camp where I had spent so much of my time and made so many friends in the past weeks. It had all but emptied out as hundreds took to the intersection of 14th and Broadway, drumming and chanting, and the quiet that fell over the vacated tents was eerie. A group of people had silently linked arms at the Interfaith tent, surrounded by candles. Here and there, people sat, meandered aimlessly, packed their belongings, and even slept, but it wasn’t the bustling tent city I had begun to think of as a second home, where I could start a conversation with almost anyone, exchange ideas, hear peoples’ life stories or tell my own, be fed, pick through free books, meditate, learn yoga, listen to people sing and play instruments, and watch children play.
We all knew that there was nothing that we could do to stop what was coming—that we couldn’t defend the camp, and that the police would destroy it no matter what, and they would arrest as many of us as they needed to in the process. We had no choice but to acknowledge that the military arm of the local government was too powerful, and, judging by their billy clubs and tear gas guns, they weren’t afraid to commit violence as they had done before. Many in the camp had already gone to jail and couldn’t risk it again, and still others had jobs, school, and families which they couldn’t abandon to spend a day or more being detained for silly misdemeanors.
All of this led me to a feeling of profound despair. . . .