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Sun Nov 8 2020 (Updated 11/30/20)
Our Long National Nightmare Is Over
Protests to demand that every vote be counted spontaneously became celebrations of Trump losing after the presidential election was called by the major corporate news networks on November 7. Rally speakers reminded their audiences that though they celebrate, they must continue to agitate for change. The damage done by Trump is extensive, including stirring up a new generation of racist hate groups, and pre-Trump struggles for justice and equality, such as the Black Lives Matter movement and the fight against climate change, will carry on.
Worried about the possibility of an electoral emergency, many organizations are mobilizing people across the U.S. to be ready to protect the election results and ensure that all votes are counted. Over 500 events are scheduled for November 4, their activation to be decided by 9am PST that day. In the San Francisco Bay Area, activists have already held demonstrations saying waiting wasn't necessary. On October 29 in Oakland, artists painted a giant street mural with the words "Choose Democracy, Stop a Coup.".
Erica Aitken of Reimagine Santa Cruz writes: The next City Council elections will decide the future of Santa Cruz. Do we open our doors to Silicon Valley with luxury rentals and our very own Santana Row? Or do we take control and build beautiful affordable housing for those who work and would like to live here? If we ask ourselves this question, it is because we have recently been the victims of a particularly galling breach of trust from our current City Councilmembers.
Mon Sep 14 2020 (Updated 09/22/20)
"These Are Climate Fires"
President Trump has said little about the wildfires raging in California, Oregon and Washington for weeks, other than to suggest poor forest management was primarily to blame. “These are climate fires,” says Timothy Ingalsbee, an Oregon-based wildland fire ecologist and former wildland firefighter. “Though some scientists hesitate to attribute a single event to climate change, these are exactly the conditions predicted by climatologists.”
Fri Sep 4 2020 (Updated 09/05/20)
Defunding Towards a New Vision of Health and Safety
The police murders of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Rayshard Brooks and too many more, have mobilized unprecedented numbers of people to take to the streets and declare that Black Lives Matter. Black people are 300% more likely to be killed at the hands of police than white people. Black people have been 28% of those killed by police since 2013 despite being only 13% of the population. A central feature of the current uprisings is the call to defund police departments, a demand also taking root in Santa Cruz.
Wed Aug 12 2020 (Updated 08/14/20)
Get Police Off Campus
In an interview originally broadcast August 6, John Malkin spoke with three professors at UC Santa Cruz who co-signed or supported a letter to the Chancellor calling for an end to police and ICE presence on campus. "Our country is witnessing the brutal effects of the entrenched racist history of policing, a history that goes back to 'slave patrols' and 'Indian patrols' and that continues to disproportionately target African Americans, Native Americans, Latinx Americans, and Asian Americans."
The original Mission Santa Cruz adobe and the replica mission were spray painted during a demonstration organized in Santa Cruz in support of the abolition of police. The phrase "Fuck Your Citizenship" was painted on the Neary-Rodriguez Adobe, and the phrase "Maldita Cruz" was spray painted on two structures. Additionally, the word "genocide" was painted on the state park plaque, and the mission bell located in Mission Plaza Park was removed. Two weeks later, Mission Santa Cruz was spray painted again during a defund police march.
Tue Jul 14 2020
Fuck the Fourth
July 4 is a U.S. holiday marking the country's independence from England, but anti-racism activists used the occasion to declare, "No one is free until we are all free.” Being that the holiday traditionally is a painful reminder of this country's history of colonization, genocide, and enslavement, alternate Independence Day events in Northern Californian cities from Oakland to San Francisco to Santa Cruz issued demands to end racism, war, and climate devastation.
Sat Jun 27 2020 (Updated 07/07/20)
Juneteenth Becomes Huge Event Nationwide
Juneteenth commemorates June 19, 1865, the day when the Union army pronounced in Texas that all enslaved peoples in the United States were finally free. Among the many Bay Area protests this year was a thousand-strong march in San Francisco. In Oakland, the ILWU shut down the port before thousands marched through downtown. Santa Cruz marched in large numbers as well. In Palo Alto and Fresno, protesters painted "BLM" and "Black Lives Matter" in huge letters in the street.
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