(Monday) Reading

by zunguzungu

A day late and a dollar short, but hey, what are you going to do?

“Corporate America Is Using Our Police Departments As Hired Thugs” Ret Police Captain Ray Lewis

Bob Hass on his treatment by the UCPD:

NONE of the police officers invited us to disperse or gave any warning. We couldn’t have dispersed if we’d wanted to because the crowd behind us was pushing forward to see what was going on. The descriptor for what I tried to do is “remonstrate.” I screamed at the deputy who had knocked down my wife, “You just knocked down my wife, for Christ’s sake!” A couple of students had pushed forward in the excitement and the deputies grabbed them, pulled them to the ground and cudgeled them, raising the clubs above their heads and swinging. The line surged. I got whacked hard in the ribs twice and once across the forearm. Some of the deputies used their truncheons as bars and seemed to be trying to use minimum force to get people to move. And then, suddenly, they stopped, on some signal, and reformed their line. Apparently a group of deputies had beaten their way to the Occupy tents and taken them down. They stood, again immobile, clubs held across their chests, eyes carefully meeting no one’s eyes, faces impassive. I imagined that their adrenaline was surging as much as mine.

My ribs didn’t hurt very badly until the next day and then it hurt to laugh, so I skipped the gym for a couple of mornings, and I was a little disappointed that the bruises weren’t slightly more dramatic. It argued either for a kind of restraint or a kind of low cunning in the training of the police. They had hit me hard enough so that I was sore for days, but not hard enough to leave much of a mark. I wasn’t so badly off.

How Occupy Organizes, interview:

Protesters Plan a National ‘Student-Debt Refusal’ Campaign.

On Wednesday night, Andrew Ross, a professor of social and cultural analysis at New York University, said members of an Occupy Wall Street working group were finalizing drafts of three “pledges” related to student debt, including a debtors’ pledge, whose signers would refuse to make payments on their loans after one million signatures have been collected.

The other pledges are one for faculty members who support those who refuse to pay, and another for nondebtors, including parents and sympathizers, who also want to show their support.

The pledges, Mr. Ross said, are to be based on four beliefs: that student loans should be interest-free; that tuition at all public institutions should be federally funded; that private and for-profit colleges should open their financial records to the public; and that students’ “debt burden” should be written off.