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Sat Apr 21 2018 (Updated 04/23/18)
Governor Brown, Please Step Up
A broad coalition kicked off a campaign urging Governor Jerry Brown to stop the build-out of dirty fossil fuel infrastructure, keep oil and gas in the ground and take immediate action to protect those most vulnerable to climate change. If Brown doesn’t act, the groups say, the governor will lose their support for the global climate action summit that he will host five months from now in San Francisco.
Sat Apr 21 2018 (Updated 04/23/18)
Community Control Over Police Surveillance Spreads
Davis and Berkeley have adopted the new law that mandates public transparency, vetted use policies, and annual reporting to protect human rights and reins in secret, unfettered surveillance by local law enforcement. Oakland is in the final stages of the adoption process. A California surveillance transparency law (SB 1186) passed through its first policy committee on April 5 at the State Senate Public Safety committee.
Thu Apr 19 2018 (Updated 04/22/18)
Hunger Strike Underway at Santa Clara County Jails
On April 15, Prisoners United of Silicon Valley started a peaceful protest to demand humane treatment in the jails. Their hunger strike is the third in two years to protest substandard jail conditions and a lack of opportunity to move out of isolation. Over 70% of Santa Clara County’s jail population are pretrial detainees, many of whom remain fighting their cases for five years or more because they can’t afford bail.
On April 13, the United States, together with its British and French allies, launched one hundred and five cruise missiles from sea and air striking three alleged chemical weapons facilities in Syria.  Anti-war protesters CodePink Women for Peace responded immediately with actions the following day in front of the Pacific Heights homes of Senator Dianne Feinstein and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi. Later in the afternoon of April 14, an emergency demonstration at Market and Powell in San Francisco demanded an end to the bombings.
Mon Apr 16 2018 (Updated 04/17/18)
Science Supporters Gather in Oakland
On April 14, the second annual March for Science Bay Area included a walk around the Lake Merritt path, speakers, and live music. The sunny day event also featured information booths and hands-on demonstrations, speakers, live music and activities for children. Organizers explained they want robustly funded and publicly communicated science as a pillar of human freedom and prosperity.
Sun Apr 8 2018 (Updated 04/17/18)
Facebook CEO Faces Government/Public Scrutiny
When Facebook security tried to shut them down, protesters at the social media giant used their best delaying tactics and continued shouting and singing in front of the "Like" sign at the entrance of the corporate campus on April 5. Under pressure from lawmakers, the media, and the public, Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg will testify before Congress about Cambridge Analytica’s breach of Facebook data. Meawnwhile, buried in a company announcement, Facebook admitted that most of its 2 billion users have had their personal data scraped by "malicious actors."
Congressman Jimmy Panetta, who represents California's central coast, was a member of a Democratic congressional delegation that visited Israel on March 26 to congratulate the nation on the 70th anniversary of the establishment of its government. Nancy Pelosi, the leader of the delegation, stated ahead of their visit, “There is no greater political accomplishment in the 20th Century than the establishment of the State of Israel." Also on March 26, Israel's army announced that “dozens of snipers" would be deployed in Gaza – and four days later, over 750 Palestinians were shot during Land Day demonstrations.
Wed Apr 4 2018 (Updated 04/17/18)
Israel Attacks Land Day Protests Across Palestine
On March 30, massive protests were held in cities across Gaza on Land Day to start a six-week mobilization leading up to al-Nakba Day on May 15, which commemorates the expulsion of more than 750,000 Palestinians from their homeland in 1948 to make way for the state of Israel. Near Gaza border fences, Israeli forces used live ammunition to kill 17 demonstrators. 1,416 Palestinians were wounded, 758 of whom were shot by live ammunition. The U.S. has used its veto power in the United Nations Security Council to block a UN investigation into the Israeli military killings in Gaza.
Hundreds of Hondurans have fled their homes and joined the Refugee Caravan in order to seek refuge in Mexico or the U.S. They, along with their fellow caravan members, have developed a network of mutual support within the caravan to protect themselves from dangers such as extortion, robbery, murder, sexual assault, torture, and deportation without a right to seek asylum, which virtually all those who journey alone confront. On March 25, the caravan departed from Tapachula, Mexico.
The National Lawyers Guild of Sacramento contradicts the lies being circulated by cops and corporate media regarding what occurred at the Stephon Clark demonstration in Sacramento on March 31. NLG Sacramento states, "We witnessed cases of harassment and excessive force by the California Highway Patrol and Sacramento County Sheriff's Department, including the unprovoked hit-and-run of a demonstrator, the issuance of unlawful orders and threats to our legal observers."
Sacramento police shot Stephon Clark seven times from behind, according to an independent autopsy conducted by pathologist Dr. Bennet Omalu, who was hired by Clark’s family. The autopsy contradicts the Sacramento police department’s claim that Clark, who was unarmed at the time, was advancing towards officers Terrence Mercadal and Jared Robinet when they shot 20 times and killed him.
To support transformational change for Black communities in Sacramento, the Build. Black. Coalition and Black Lives Matter Sacramento announced they are creating a multi-year plan in partnership with the Sacramento Kings to support the education of young people and to provide the workforce preparation and economic development efforts needed to truly #BuildBlackFutures. The effort to support and lift up Black youth begins this Friday, March 30 from 5:00 to 8:00 p.m. at the South Sacramento Christian Church.
On March 26, proponents of Monterey County’s landmark Measure Z ballot initiative filed an appeal to restore the land-use protections that voters passed by an overwhelming majority in November 2016. The appeal challenges a Superior Court ruling in March that invalidated part of the ordinance, which aims to shield the county from fracking chemicals and oil industry pollution. Measure Z won with 56 percent of the vote.
On March 14, thousands of San Francisco Bay Area students participated in a national walkout against gun violence, with 1,500 marching in the suburb of Menlo Park alone. However, not all went smoothly for some Bay Area students seeking to express themselves. One district superintendent in the South Bay accused students of not thinking things through, and stated that “Organizations have their own agendas and they’re using kids as pawns."
Thu Mar 22 2018 (Updated 03/31/18)
Turn Up for Stephon Clark!
Black Lives Matter Sacramento writes: The murder of Stephon Clark was unjustified. On March 18th at 9:13 pm, Stephon was murdered, and while the police interrogated his family, the family was not told that his body was in their backyard. Four hours later at 1:00 am, his grandmother looked into the backyard, and saw his body on the ground, shot up. Within 48 hours Sacramento Police Department changed their story four times: first, they said he was carrying a gun; then they said he was carrying a “toolbar;” then they stated he was carrying a wrench; lastly, they confirmed that he only had a cellphone.
Sun Mar 25 2018 (Updated 03/26/18)
The Case For the Meadow
A group of UC Santa Cruz faculty, students, alumni, staff, and concerned community members have joined together in an effort to prevent development on one of the most important scenic landmarks of the UCSC campus, the East Meadow. East Meadow Action Committee writes: The open meadows are central to UCSC’s world-renowned design aesthetic. This proposal overturns a fifty-year tradition of environmentally-conscious planning. We support more, better, and more affordable student housing and improved childcare facilities on campus. There are other places to build them that do not overturn UCSC’s proudest traditions.
04/21/18 750 Public Interest Groups Urge Halt to New Oil and Gas Projects in California frontpage | environment | health-housing | california04/21/18 Two NorCal Cities Take Lead in Regulating Spying and Surveillance Equipment frontpage | police | central-valley | east-bay | government04/19/18 Prisoners United of Silicon Valley Demand Human Treatment in County Jails frontpage | police | race | south-bay04/19/18 CodePink Protests Syrian Bombings at San Francisco Homes of Feinstein and Pelosi frontpage | antiwar | sf | east-bay | us | international04/16/18 March for Science Rally and Street Fair frontpage | environment | east-bay04/08/18 Protesters on Facebook Campus Say Zuckerberg Is the Bad Actor frontpage | media | peninsula | government04/07/18 Democratic Delegation Visits Israel on 70th Anniversary of the Nakba frontpage | antiwar | government | palestine | santa-cruz04/04/18 17 Killed by Israeli Soldiers During Land Day Protest in Gaza, Over 1,400 Wounded frontpage | antiwar | us | international | palestine04/04/18 Bay Area Queers Spread Palestinian Teen Ahed Tamimi’s Image Far and Wide lgbtqi | womyn | arts | sf | east-bay | international | palestine04/04/18 Pueblo Sin Fronteras Denounces Calls for Violence Against the Refugee Caravan frontpage | us | international | americas | immigrant04/02/18 NLG Confronts CHP and Sheriff on Abuse of Stephon Clark Demonstrators and Legal Observers frontpage | police | race | central-valley