WELCOME to Occupy Charlotte

This was the official website for the Occupy Charlotte movement. The content below is from its 2011-2012 archived pages. Use this site for historical reference only.

This is no longer the active site for the  Occupy Charlotte movement. 

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DIRECT DEMOCRACY

Representative democracy is failing us. By using a model of direct democracy the voice of the People can once again be heard.

JOIN US

Come for a meeting, join in an action or demonstration, or just stop by and introduce yourself.

OUR COMMITMENT

We are committed to peaceful actions and continue to do our part in upholding a respectful relationship with those charged to protect and serve our city.

About Occupy as a movement and Occupy Charlotte

4 THOUGHTS ON “ABOUT”

Josh Pazy Paladino on December 4, 2011 at 1:54 am said:

Hey was wondering if you could send me a print of the 10 points of our message page as i misplaced our’s and im in dire need so asap would be prefered and i know i can get a responce faster here. thanks i miss you and check the facebook for my update from atlanta.

DMarks on December 8, 2011 at 1:33 pm said:

Here is the 10 points you requested:

“the basic theme of our message”:

1. There exists today a political/economic system that is tilted against the 99%

2. That the richest one percent of the population controls a disproportionate share of wealth and political power.

3. We believe that the elites, corporations, and banks, the richest 1% have corrupted our political system through the influence of their wealth.

4. There exists a mass economic injustice.

5. This inequality is a cancer to our national well-being.

6. We denounce corporate greed and the gap between rich and poor.

7. We want to limit the role of money in politics.

8. We are fighting for a financial and political system that does not favor the wealthy and powerful.

9. We seek ‘a new birth of freedom and that government of the people, by the people, for the people’ as so eloquently expressed in the Gettysburg address.

10. Not a government of the rich by the rich for the rich.

 

Daniel Clifton on May 9, 2012 at 3:10 pm said:

I agree with all ten points and have for years. How do I join?

Scottie W on May 10, 2012 at 12:39 am said:

Sign up for our weekly newsletter!

Take a look at our calendar and join us for an action, event, Working Group meeting, or General Assembly!

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2012 NEWS POSTS

Posted on June 25, 2012 by Scottie W

Fellow Occupiers,

Please find below an URGENT Call for Action from Occupy New Orleans.Adam, Alex, Holly, and I enjoyed an awesome lunch at Cabo Fish Taco a lil while back with great folks from Occupy the Stage in NoLa, including Tara Jill, who sent this message, and Justin Warren, whom this message is about.

A FELLOW OCCUPIER IS IN NEED OF OUR HELP!  Please see below.

-Scottie

Begin forwarded message:

Justin from Occupy NOLA/ Occupy The Stage has been in jail since Wednesday, and Occupy NOLA has put out a call for action.I wanted to share this with you.  If you can share this with your occupation, it would be great!

From Occupy NOLA Direct Action Working Group:

On early Wednesday morning the NOPD arrested Justin Warren, founder of Occupy the Stage, shortly after an Occupy NOLA/Occupy the Caravan General Assembly at 2735 Toulouse. Baton Rouge authorities are seeking  the extradition of Justin, who is currently in OPP, to the state capital where is to be tried on trumped up charges arising from a March 12 protest against proposed cuts in state education funding. Justin’s arrest is clearly an attempt by the forces of repression to silence this very vocal member of the 99 percent.

Occupy NOLA is urging all supporters of free speech and the right to dissent  to contact Sheriff Marlin Gusman to urge that the Orleans Parish Sheriff’s Office  not collaborate with any attempt to extradite Justin to Baton Rouge.  Remember Sheriff Gusman is an elected official who is susceptible to public pressure. What’s more is that the  Orleans Parish Sheriff’s Office should not be in the business of  aiding attacks on free speech.How to contact Sheriff Gusman:

The phone number of the East Bank Sheriff’s Office is 504-822-2000.

The Contact Us section of the website of  the Orleans Parish Sheriff’s Office provides for the sending of  emails to the Sheriff.  The address for the home page of this website is: www.opcso.org

Thanks!

Tara Jill

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General Assembly notes June 23rd

Posted on June 23, 2012 by govfearpeople

Proposals:

- Reduce forum requirements-quorum requirement reduced to eight people

- Call To Action- The longer CTA will be posted on the occupyclt.net website and the shorter CTA will be sent to other occupations across the country

- Empower DNC working group- The working group will come back with a revised proposal. Quorum rules for the WG, Responsibilities (fliers, logistics,) accountability and relationship to the General assembly, and organizational structure. Ability to schedule conference calls.

-  From here to the DNC we plan 1 or more interoccupy a week- proposal passed.

Announcements:

Occupy Charlotte will be greeting the Occupy Caravan at Marshall Park this monday the 25th at 1pm.

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Occupy Charlotte Denounces City’s Free Speech Lottery

Posted on June 19, 2012 by Internet and Media

Occupy Charlotte Denounces City’s Free Speech Lottery

On June 4th the City of Charlotte began accepting applications for its Free Speech Lottery, which will be held on July 2nd at 2pm at the CharMeck Government Center (600 E 4th St). The Free Speech Lottery will determine who may participate in a City-designated parade route during the Democratic National Convention, and it will determine who may speak at a Free Speech Zone that the City calls “a speaker’s platform.”

Occupy Charlotte announces its condemnation of the City’s Free Speech Lottery. Occupy Charlotte will not legitimize this charade by placing its name in the lottery to try to “win” an opportunity to participate in a Free Speech Zone. This entire City, this entire country, is a Free Speech Zone. And Occupy Charlotte members will make their voices heard during the DNC without winning a Free Speech Lottery.

In previous National Convention cities, Free Speech Zones have been located far from the convention sites, behind metal fences and barbed wire. The City of Charlotte has not announced the location of its Free Speech Zone, but it has announced that a maximum of 60 speakers may speak at the podium over the course of the 3-day convention. 60 speakers from the tens of thousands who are expected to demonstrate at the DNC.

The City has also announced the location of its designated parade route, which will allow a maximum of 18 marches over the course of the 3-day convention. This parade route is unacceptable. It is a tour of Charlotte parking lots, and it does not meet the First Amendment standard to be within sight and sound of the Convention.

This Free Speech Lottery is an embarrassment to our city. It is part of the permanent changes to the Charlotte City Code that our City Council created as a legacy of the DNC. These changes place repressive restrictions on free speech activities, open wide the doors for profiling protesters and the homeless, and evicted Occupy Charlotte’s peaceable protest on the People’s Lawn of Old City Hall.

Occupy Charlotte encourages all Charlotteans to contact Mayor Foxx and the City Council to tell them that they have the opportunity to make Charlotte a model city, a city unlike past National Convention cities. One that respects First Amendment rights. In order to become this model city, our City Council must repeal the disgraceful changes to the Charlotte City Code.

Media contact for this release:

Michael Zytkow — (980) 200-5178

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An Ordinary Event

Posted on May 3, 2012 by Internet and Media

Today’s protest at the Duke Energy shareholder’s meeting was peaceful, and there was no harassment of citizens by the CMPD. There were surprising numbers of police in attendance but other than that, nothing at all extraordinary.

Occupy Charlotte has worked hard to maintain a good and respectful relationship with our local law enforcement. CMPD has done their part to maintain a respectful tone with us as well, and today’s ‘extraordinary event’ designation did not change that. Four of us wore the same backpacks that we normally carry in uptown Charlotte, none of us were stopped, harassed, or searched. Our main interactions with the police were to say hello to the ones we know and to congratulate Major Estes on his recent promotion.

These ludicrous  “DNC ordinances” passed by the Charlotte City Council and invoked by Curt Walton were both created in and designed to further a climate of fear in our city. Corporations like Duke Energy and Bank of America have tremendous power here to influence our city council and manager. But I believe that we can choose to reject that type of power, that we can refuse to participate in furthering a climate of fear.  People are standing up to the corporations that have hijacked our democracy, and it will take more than the passing of absurd new laws designed to intimidate Charlotte citizens to silence us.

Wednesday May 9th will be the next test of the extraordinary event ordinances as we gather to protest at the Bank of America shareholder’s meeting. Join us at  8AM on The People’s Lawn (600 E Trade St) for what is sure to be an exciting, empowering, festive action. Leave your fear at home, bring passion.

With Respect, Laurel

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City Officials Going After Occupy Charlotte… Again

Posted on May 1, 2012 by Scottie W

PRESS RELEASE – May Day, 2012

As if shutting down the Occupy Charlotte camp wasn’t insult enough, the City is now claiming that Occupy Charlotte’s logo constitutes copyright infringement.

On April 10th, Occupy Charlotte received an email from the City’s Assistant Director of Corporate Communications and Marketing, Keith Richardson, stating, “In reviewing your web page, crown artwork, which is registered by the City ofCharlotte, was discovered. …[T]he City ofCharlotte, a municipal corporation, is the sole custodian of this crown logo and its use. Therefore, any use or application of the symbol must be reviewed and approved by the City.”

OccupyCharlotte members are flattered that City officials are trying to learn more about Occupy Charlotte by “reviewing” www.OccupyClt.net, but they wonder if this is the best use of taxpayer-funded time.  Moreover, Occupy Charlotte members are curious as to whether other groups or individuals which use a crown logo have been “reviewed and approved by the City.”

According to Katy Parker, Legal Director of the ACLU of North Carolina, “In order to sue for infringement, the trademark owner must first show that the alleged infringer used the owner’s mark ‘in commerce,’” and that “the alleged violator’s use must have created a likelihood of consumer confusion.” She further states that “it appears to [her] that OC’s use of the City’s logo constitutes ‘fair use.’”

Occupy Charlotte has come to expect this kind of harassment from the City as par for the course.  As in the case of the logo, sometimes the City just throws stuff to see what sticks. During the CIAA in early March, Occupy Charlotte members were told that CMPD was worried about what was in demonstrators’ backpacks and that CMPD officers could call the City Manager to ask the Manager to declare an “extraordinary event,” which would make carrying a backpack an arrestable offense. Just this Saturday CMPD officers told Occupiers that they could not pass out literature against Amendment 1 on the public Greenway where the Kings Drive Art Walk was taking place.  The strategy is to intimidate by asserting that something is unlawful even if it isn’t.

Another tactic the City uses to target Occupy Charlotte is the selective enforcement of laws.  In the fall two men were arrested for jaywalking to join an Occupy Charlotte rally, while other jaywalkers crossed the street undeterred.  On winter marches Occupy Charlotte members were continually told that they couldn’t wear scarves over their faces.  On January 9th, one Occupy Charlotte member was arrested at a City Council public hearing after speaking seconds over the three-minute limit; another man spoke over the time limit later at the very same meeting.  Also in January, two Occupiers visiting from other cities were arrested for standing on the sidewalk in front of the Bank of America headquarters (so that they could view the “public art” in the lobby), while others stood on the same privately-owned sidewalk.  After the City evicted Occupy Charlotte from its Occupation on the People’s Lawn at600 E Trade St, CMPD officers told Occupiers that they would be arrested if they napped on the lawn, and one man was arrested because he fell asleep while sitting at the information tent. When it was impossible to have someone awake at the tent between 10pm and 7am, CMPD removed the tent.  Occupy Charlotte members wonder why the tents at the Kings Drive Arts Walk were allowed to remain up overnight unattended. But in a city owned by corporations like Bank of America and Duke Energy, it should be no surprise that commercial ventures have more rights and considerations than ordinary community members. This is the same city that wouldn’t permit Occupy Charlotte to rent porta-potties because it is not a commercial venture. The same city that ceded Bank of America the entire sidewalk in front of its stadium, stealing it from the people, the rightful owners of public spaces like sidewalks (and Old City Hall lawn). The same city that gave Chiquita, a human rights offender, 2.5 million dollars for moving expenses while small local businesses struggle. The same city that continually places corporate interests above the interests of the people.

But Occupy Charlotte is resilient.  No matter how hard the City tries to quash the movement, Occupiers will keep fighting for economic, political, and social justice.  Recently Occupy Charlotte sent out a national call to action listing several important events which are bound to draw thousands of other demonstrators toCharlottein the next couple weeks.

On May Day (May 1st), Occupy Charlotte joins Occupy Wall Street’s call for a General Strike – no work, no school, no banking. Occupiers encourage all community members to spend the day with friends and family on the People’s Lawn (600 E Trade St).

On May 3rd, Occupy Charlotte will march on the Duke Energy shareholders meeting to tell Duke to stop funding dirty and dangerous energy.  Duke’s coal-fired plants which surround Charlotte contribute toCharlottehaving the 10th worst air quality in the nation.

On May 5th, Occupy Charlotte will be joining other activists at a rally AGAINST Amendment 1, to remind other Charlotteans to vote AGAINST the Amendment on May 8th.

At the end of a national convergence which begins on May 6th, Occupy Charlotte will march on the Bank of America shareholders meeting on May 9th to tell B of A and the world that Occupy Charlotte is ashamed of this corporate citizen.  Number one in foreclosures, number one in funding climate change… Bank of America isn’t too big to fail, it’s too big to exist.  It’s time to break up this corporate mega-beast and replace it with businesses that truly support our community, our country, and our planet.

Finally, on May 11th, Occupy Charlotte will Occupy the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC)’s “Spring Task Force Summit.”  ALEC is the notorious organization which created the model legislation for the anti-union bills in Wisconsin, the anti-immigrant SB1070 in Arizona, and Florida’s “Stand Your Ground” law. ALEC is comprised of over 2,000 legislative members and 300 corporate members who write despicable legislation behind closed doors.

So right now Occupy Charlotte has a very full calendar.  Removing a crown logo from its website is pretty low in the “to-do” list.

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April 14th — National Organizing Conference of the Coalition to Protest at the DNC

Posted on April 13, 2012 by Scottie W

National Organizations Tell DNC – We Will Demonstrate in Charlotte and Will Fight For Our Constitutional Right to Do So Within Sight and Sound of the Convention and Banks


Charlotte, NC — A few days after the anniversary of the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., leaders from organizations from across the U.S. will convene in Charlotte to announce their intent to demonstrate for a people’s agenda during the DNC in September. There will  be a press conference on Friday, April 13, at 1pm outside of the Bank of America Stadium.

Speakers at the press conference include representatives from organizations in Michigan, New York, Wisconsin, South Carolina, Florida, and North Carolina.  The organizations work on issues ranging from immigrant rights to calling for a national Moratorium on home foreclosures.  They intend to raise these issues through activities and demonstrations during the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte.

“United 4 the Dream joined the Coalition to Protest at the Democratic National Convention to unite with other organisations who are passionate about access to higher education for immigrants and all people,” explained Mayra Arteaga. “As an immigrants rights youth organization, we’re going to be joining demonstrations during the DNC because we believe that statements must be put into action in order to get justice for our communities.”

The Coalition to Protest at the DNC includes 45 organizations from across North Carolina, the South, and the U.S., including labor organizations, peace groups, Occupy groups, students and youth, and other prominent activists.

The Coalition is committed to organizing a mass march on the “Wall Street of the South.”  Grievances will be raised about injustices perpetrated and funded by the international banks that call Charlotte home and that are significant contributors to Democratic and Republican candidates.  The three primary issues of the Coalition are:

  • Good jobs for all! Economic justice now. Make the banks and corporations pay for their crisis,
  • Money for education, healthcare, housing and all human needs, not for war and incarceration,
  • Justice for immigrants and all oppressed peoples! Stop the raids and deportations.

The Coalition to Protest at the DNC has made multiple attempts to obtain permits for parks and a parade during the convention. City of Charlotte representatives have responded that all parks are reserved for the DNC and that there will be a new process for applying for space, but they are not offering a timeline for when this will be made public.

“The rights of the people to present their demands for economic, social and political justice to the delegates of a major electoral party must not be curtailed by excessive delay tactics. We are taking every step to ensure that a successful and safe march will take place in Charlotte that brings forth a people’s agenda to end unemployment, discrimination and war” said Elena Everett, a member of the Legal and Permits Working Group of the Coalition to Protest at the DNC.

On Saturday, April 14, the Coalition to Protest at the DNC will be holding a day-long National Organizing Conference to discuss plans during the Convention. The conference will begin at 9:00am at the Charlotte School of Law. For more information and to get involved, visit our website at protestdnc.org, emailinfo@protestdnc.org, or call us at 704-266-0362.

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Press Release March 26th

Posted on March 26, 2012 by Internet and Media

The Occupation of Government Center Plaza

Members of Occupy Charlotte will be bringing attention to the Public Hearing on transit fare increases by Occupying Government Center Plaza on Wednesday, March 28th beginning at 6am.

Occupy Charlotte, which is part of the Occupy Wall Street movement, is a community group fighting for political and economic justice at the local, state, national, and international levels.

Public transit should be fully funded.  But raising fares for riders is not the answer.  CATS expects a 3% drop in ridership if fares are increased, which will lead to more traffic congestion and carbon emissions in Charlotte, a city which already has the 10th worst air quality in the United States.  As part of our Occupation of Government Center Plaza, Occupy Charlotte members will host a discussion at 4:30pm to talk about alternatives to raising fares.  We will also be encouraging community members to speak at the Public Hearing at 5:30pm.

Please join us anytime Wednesday, March 28th at Government Center Plaza (600 E. 4th St.)

For more information, please see our website: www.OccupyClt.net

Media contact for this event: Scottie Wingfield, 484-941-4722

2011 NEWS POSTS

Posted on December 31, 2011 by Internet and Media

12/31/2011 Charlotte, North Carolina

Occupy Charlotte is a diverse group working together to call attention to economic and political injustice. We understand that it is difficult to discern whether actions are taken as individuals or as representing us as a group. Occupy Charlotte practices Direct Democracy, to clarify for ourselves and the public what our agreements are.

Occupy Charlotte was not aware of and did not agree to support the burning of two American flags. Two of the individuals involved have participated in Occupy Charlotte activities, and each has issued a statement that they were not acting on the behalf of Occupy Charlotte.

We agreed that we do not approve of the burning of an American flag.
We reaffirmed our intention to continue occupying at 600 E Trade St.

Help needed by our friends at Occupy the Stage in NoLa!

OccupyClt.net