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Protesters in Northern California have engaged in direct actions aimed at disrupting business as usual and raising the profile of the call to free Palestine. Activists shut down the Bay Bridge. A US military vessel destined to deliver weaponry to Israel was blocked from leaving the Port of Oakland. A defense contractor's office was locked down. Communiqués posted on Indybay claim sabotage of train lines, as well as a water main at a pro-IDF fundraiser.
Millions of people worldwide are standing in solidarity with Palestinians as Israel wages war on Gaza. Marches and rallies have demanded a ceasefire, the end of US military support for Israel, and that Palestine be freed once and for all. Every week there are more protests in cities large and small, including in many that have never seen a pro-Palestinian demonstration. In San Francisco, tens of thousands have marched against Israel's war on Gaza.
At sunrise on October 19, youth climate activists associated with the group Occupy Beale gave a speech decrying the imperialist military-industrial complex, responsible for countless ecological atrocities, energy consumption, and carbon emissions. Four activists, banners in hand, then marched across the demarcation line at the Schneider gate of Beale Air Force Base. Military police detained three of them for over an hour.
On September 16, thousands rallied and marched in Sacramento in solidarity with New York City's massive March to End Fossil Fuels. Starting with colorful rallies in Sacramento's Old Town, protesters marched to the Tower Bridge and displayed a huge banner demanding an end of fossil fuel use. Sign bearing kayakers in the river joined in. Smaller demonstrations happened in Palo Alto and other cities.
On May 19, Governor Newsom announced a legislative package and signed an executive order that would gut the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) to expedite the construction of the Delta Tunnel, Sites Reservoir, and other controversial infrastructure projects, drawing condemnation from environmental groups. On May 25, the California Senate Budget Committee voted to temporarily block the plan, ending the proposal for this legislative year.
In San Francisco on May 1, IBU-ILWU ferry boat workers marched and rallied at Alcatraz Cruises at Pier 33 which is owned by the anti-union Hornblower company. In San José, union members and allies gathered from throughout the South Bay and beyond, then took to the streets. They chanted, "Up, up with liberation! Down, down with deportation!" In Fresno, around 200 people marched through downtown to advocate immigrants' rights.
The Western States Petroleum Association and big oil companies peddle their influence through a variety of means, from campaign spending and lobbying legislators to creating astroturf groups and sponsoring business-friendly journalistic events. Numerous media events are paid for by oil dollars, earning the companies favorable mentions by journalistic organizations. Meanwhile, a total of 897 oil drilling permits have been approved thus far in 2023.
Mon Mar 6 2023 (Updated 04/11/23)
Activists Declare Right to Rescue Farm Animals
On February 15, activists gathered at the office of Merced County District Attorney Nicole Silveira to ask her to prosecute documented criminal animal cruelty and worker abuse at Foster Farms’ slaughterhouse in Livingston, instead of prosecuting the individuals who rescued two animals from just outside the facility. Two women are being charged with theft, with the trial set to begin March 7 at Merced County Superior Court.
Thu Nov 24 2022 (Updated 11/25/22)
UC Workers Strike in Protest of Unfair Labor Practices
On November 14, 48,000 University of California workers walked off the job. They continue to hold the line as they work toward a fair contract. The teaching assistants, researchers, and post doctoral researchers are represented by United Auto Workers. Union organizers said that the strike will continue until UC ends its unfair labor practices and starts bargaining in good faith. Many faculty members are striking in solidarity.
Sun Nov 13 2022 (Updated 11/14/22)
Fears of Nuclear War Give Rise to Nationwide Protests
It has been 60 years since the the Cuban Missile Crisis, and now may be the closest the world has been to a nuclear war since then. In October, anti-war activists in the San Francisco Bay Area and the Central Valley joined others across the nation to demand that elected leaders work to reduce the risk of nuclear war. On November 10, Youth vs Apocalypse, CodePink, Veterans for Peace and others rallied at Lockheed Martin's San Francisco office.
On August 27, anti-LGBTQ+ bigots, Proud Boys, and other white nationalists held a Straight Pride rally in the Central Valley town of Modesto, California. After announcing their rally location weeks ahead of time, only thirty alt-righters showed up at the Planned Parenthood location. There they faced about two hundred reproductive justice and LGBTQ-rights supporters who shouted down the small group of right-wing extremists.
Fri Mar 4 2022 (Updated 05/13/22)
Russia Moves to Take All of Ukraine by Military Force
On February 24, Russia began a military invasion of Ukraine, claiming its goals were to "demilitarize" and "de-nazify" the country. Bay Area Ukrainians protested in San Francisco on February 26 and 27, many agreeing with calls for maximal NATO involvement. On March 6, Code Pink and other anti-war organizations called for a Global Day of Action to protest the invasion, while also pointing to NATO expansion as having contributed to the crisis.
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