Occupy Leicester and Warriors for Justice

15 Nov

Today we visited Occupy Leicester. These are incredibly brave young people beginning a conversation about the world that we live in. Beginning a conversation about a world that is fore-closed. There are some fotos here, here, here and here.

Anyway, we thought we might offer some thoughts on occupation and protest. Just to keep safe and warm, you know. They are not perfect. We are all learning.

1. On keeping warm

See Vinay Gupta’s lovely advice, because it will get cold http://vinay.howtolivewiki.com/blog/other/advice-for-occupy-avoid-winter-war-2881

2. On the Police’s Stop-and-Search powers

From the CAB: http://www.adviceguide.org.uk/index/your_rights/legal_system/police_powers.htm

Ifyou are marching on November 30, and thereafter, from GBC (trusted and on most marches): http://ldmg.org.uk/files/bustcard26march2011.pdf

The advice is print the second of these off and carry a few for yourself and friends. Write the phone numbers on your arm, and if you are in London on November 30 add-in solicitors ITN: 020 8522 7707

Check the GBC Legal website for more info: http://greenandblackcross.org/legal

3. On keeping safe

The Police’s kettling tactics are well known. Use Sukey to track what’s going on, and to contribute to the monitoring of the Police by protestors. See: http://sukey.org/

However, consider a SIM-only phone [web-enabled so you can track what’s happening assuming network availability]. The police may try to confiscate a smart-fone and take your data. Just keep basic info – legal numbers, friends on the march, home numbers etc. – either on that SIM or the fone, in case the SIM gets taken.

If you take a smart fone, consider a back-up power supply. See for instance: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Back-Battery-Power-Station-iPhone/dp/B001N527CU or

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Anker-1900mAh-Battery-Samsung-GT-I9100/dp/B00567Y7A6/ref=pd_cp_ce_1

Take video/fotos of incidents. Publicise them.

See if any Apps support your protest: http://www.movements.org/how-to/entry/how-to-organize-a-protest-using-the-protest4-app

For some free learning and information on demos/protests follow these guys and girls on Twitter:
@gbclegal
@occupylsx
@tentcityuni

@reallyopenuni
@bc_tmh
@mediocredave
@aaronjpeters
@fitwatch
@copwatcher

@agthompson

@thirduniversity [blushes]

Make sure that you follow/use the relevant hashtags: #sukey; #n30; #solidarity; #occupylsx; #occupyleicester etc.. You will get real-time updates about the police/kettles etc..

Beware people you do not know. Police infiltration is increasing and has historical precedent. See: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V_kCB54oi04

4. On being kettled: keep mobile and try to avoid it, it’s a pain in the arse. Or maybe it gives us battle scars. However, advice at:

http://wespeakforfreedom.com/forums/specific-categories/action-activism/some-guidelines-protesting-students

http://www.thesite.org/homelawandmoney/activism/campaigning/your_right_to_protest

See also Fitwatch: http://www.fitwatch.org.uk/

If you are going to protests in a group avoid coaches if you can – the police stop them/search you; agree a strategy for keeping mobile, keeping in contact, agree meeting points and consider a buddying system. You need to keep in constant communication, including with home. If things feel like they are getting tense reconsider your options.

5. On occupations

There are a number of occupations now. They all need support/educational engagements. We can all teach. We can all learn.

http://occupywiki.org/
http://tentcityuniversity.occupylsx.org/
http://spaceproject.org.uk/
http://sociologicalimagination.org/a-work-in-progress
http://reallyopenuniversity.wordpress.com/2011/11/10/students-and-sparks-and-the-flame-that-never-was/

6. Some reading

On occupation and the University, see: http://www.scribd.com/doc/54768353/Roundhouse-Journal

On alternative education, see also: http://www.learnex.dmu.ac.uk/2011/11/10/a-teach-in-at-tent-city-university-and-the-struggle-for-alternatives/

On the crisis see http://Libcom.org

And http://tentcityuniversity.occupylsx.org/?page_id=30

John Holloway’s How to change the world without taking power: http://libcom.org/library/change-world-without-taking-power-john-holloway
Hardt and Negri’s Empire: http://www.angelfire.com/cantina/negri/
David Harvey’s Reading Capital Volume 1: http://davidharvey.org/reading-capital/

We also recommend Paul Mason’s blog: http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/newsnight/paulmason/
Faisal Islam’s blog: http://blogs.channel4.com/faisal-islam-on-economics/
Zerohedge: http://www.zerohedge.com/
Automatic Earth: http://theautomaticearth.blogspot.com/
Opendemocracy: http://www.opendemocracy.net/

But most of all…

Stay safe. Remember that the work of change takes protest and activity, but also lots of conversations and deliberations and education. Over, and over, and over again.

One Response to “Occupy Leicester and Warriors for Justice”

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. The @thirduniversity on the @thirduniversity « The Third University - December 16, 2011

    […] in our home town, Leicester. We were inspired by the young people who were raising awareness for the things that others would […]

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: