MEDIA ROOTS— In 1946, Oakland was the last city in the U.S. to have a general strike. Now, 65 years later, the people are going to shut the city down again in another historic strike taking place tomorrow, November 2, 2011. Tomorrow’s strike was voted on last week at the Occupy Oakland General Assembly, where over 1,600 people voted in favor to “liberate Oakland and shut down the 1%.”
Media Roots will be on site in downtown Oakland during the strike doing real time coverage of the events and interviews with the participants.
SFIST– The proposed strike intends to close all banks and corporations for the day, while calling on laborers, teachers and students to join mass gatherings at 14th and Broadway at 9 a.m, 12 noon and 5 p.m. on Wednesday. Support for the general strike extends beyond the protesters at Frank Ogawa Plaza, as the strike has also been endorsed by labor union SEIU Local 1021 and the the teachers of the Oakland Educational Association.
In addition to staging a walkout of businesses and schools, the protest intends to shut down the Port of Oakland by forming a picket line before the 7 p.m. night shift.
The strike proposal via Occupy Oakland:
While we are calling for a general strike, we are also calling for much more. People who organize out of their neighborhoods, schools, community organizations, affinity groups, workplaces and families are encouraged to self organize in a way that allows them to participate in shutting down the city in whatever manner they are comfortable with and capable of.
The whole world is watching Oakland. Let’s show them what is possible.
Occupy Oakland held a press conference yesterday at Latham Square, the historic site of the Oakland General Strike of 1946 at Telegraph & Broadway, to discuss the strike.
Occupy Oakland General Strike Press Conference October 31, 2011
Among the speakers, Boots Riley (Oakland resident and member of “The Coup” and “Street Sweeper Social Club”) read from an inter-office memo from Oakland City Administrator Deanna Santana agreeing to SEIU’s call to shield Oakland City workers from retaliation should they participate in tomorrow’s historic Oakland general strike.
Clarence Thomas (of ILWU Local 10 and Million Worker March Movement) is “a third-generation longshore worker” from the S.F. Bay Area. Clarence Thomas spoke “as the Co-Chair of the Million Worker March Movement:”
“The reason why I and other workers will be standing in solidarity on Wednesday for the call for the general strike by the Occupy Oakland Movement is because this is a movement about fighting corporate rule with worker power. I’ll say it again, fighting corporate rule with worker power, the 99%. For the last 30 years, with the introduction of computer and othe technology, American workers have been providing their employer with increased production. At the same time, workers’ wages have remained stagnant. It looks like this. That gap represents corporate profits. The profits that the 1% have been living off of, and participating in, to the detriment of the 99%. Today, only 7.2% of workers in the private sector belong to a union. That is the lowest percentage since the year 1900. And one of the reasons for that is because of corporate rule run amok. But we must be very clear about something. This is not about a crisis on Wall Street. This is capitalism run amok. Capitalism has failed us.”
Elaine Brown (former Chair of the Black Panther Party, now with SEUI/United Health Care Workers), Cat Brooks (of the Onyx Organizing Committee), and School Teacher Javier Armas all joined Occupy Oakland occupiers and others in this historic press conference.
Occupy Oakland features a growing list of endorsements and statements of solidarity, including:
Photo by Occupy Oakland