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Chicago - The Daily Occupation

Keeping you up-to-date with the #Occupy movement.

Posts tagged Chicago

NATO protesters get stage, microphone, in preparation for Sunday

According to CBS:

With just five days to go, the protests are getting louder, with a total of 12 arrests over the past two days.

CBS 2’s Derrick Blakley reports the biggest anti-NATO march got a big boost on Tuesday, as city officials authorized setting up a stage near McCormick Place for Sunday’s protest rally during the start of the summit.

The agreement means thousands of demonstrators will not only be allowed to march to a point near where the NATO meetings will take place, they’ll also have a stage and sound system to help anti-war veterans get their message out.

A dense but very well detailed list of reasons for protest has been offered by

And of course, sound canons may well be used against the protestersChicago police just spent a million dollars on anti-protest equipment.

“The business end of the LRAD looks like a mid-sized satellite dish emits high-intensity sound in a 30-degree arc that seems to victims as if they just opened the door on a tunnel of sound as loud as 150 decibels up to 1,600 feet away from the LRAD. Noise louder than 120 decibels, which is about equivalent to a jet taking off, causes pain in the ears, according to the Toronto Star. Sustained noise louder than 85 decibels can cause permanent hearing damage according to the U.S. National Institute on Deafness. ”

Learn more and get involved:

Chicago: Nurses’ rally to draw thousands, Tom Morello to draw even more

Nurses Rally, Tom Morello to draw crowds

CBS reports:

National Nurses United officials have said they expect about 2,000 nurses to attend a rally Friday, where they will call for a tax on financial institutions’ transactions to offset cuts in social services, education and health care. But city officials are expecting more than 5,000 because of a performance by former Rage Against the Machine guitarist Tom Morello.

Anti-war protesters gather on Thursday:

On May 17th, 75 anti-war activists protested outside of Obama’s Chicago campaign headquarters :

Continue reading Chicago: Nurses’ rally to draw thousands, Tom Morello to draw even more

Chicago police spend $1 million on anti-Occupy Gear

In preparation for the antiwar protests and Occupations taking place this month, the Chicago Police have gone on a million-dollar shopping spree, getting new riot gear and even directed-sound weapons (LRAD) designed to disperse crowds.

The Guardian reports:

“Police in Chicago have spent $1m on riot-control equipment in the last few months ahead of next month’s Nato summit, which is expected to attract thousands of anti-war protesters. Protesters from a coalition of organisations including unions, anti-war and Occupy groups are expected to descend on the city. National Nurses United, the largest nurses’ union in the US, is providing free buses to Chicago for activists from across the country even as its own plans to demonstrate were vetoed by the city of Chicago on Tuesday.

While protesters insist demonstrations during the Nato conference – the main action is planned for Sunday 20 May – will be peaceful, police appear to be leaving nothing to chance. Records show that since it was announced the Nato conference would be held in Chicago, police have purchased improved riot gear for both officers and horses. Officers are also preparing to use the controversial long-range acoustic device, or LRAD, during the operation.

Chicago police confirmed to the Guardian that they will have a LRAD available at the 20 May protest, “as a means to ensure a consistent message is delivered to large crowds that can be heard over ambient noise”.

LRADs have been purchased by the US army and navy, and have also been used in commercial shipping as an attempt to drive away pirates. The device was first used at a protest in the US at the G20 Pittsburgh summit in September 2009, however there are ongoing complaints that its use there caused some people to suffer permanent damage.

Karen Piper, a university lecturer, claims she suffered irreversible hearing damage that day, and is currently bringing a legal case against the city of Pittsburgh. “This is a device that has the capability to inflict permanent hearing loss on people,” Piper’s lawyer, Vic Walczak, told the Guardian, adding that the device is “more dangerous than a Taser. We don’t believe it should be used against demonstrators. It should not be used outside the battlefield.”


John Beachan, the Chicago co-ordinator for the anti-war group Answer, is involved in organising the protest against the Nato conference. He criticised the police spending as “quite striking. It shows what they’d prefer to spend money on.”

“People are coming out to protest Nato because they want wars to end and they want the money spent on public services, not on bailing out the banks and not on more wars,” said Beachan, a 44-year-old community college lecturer.

“Why is it that the state is spending so much money on arming the police here supposedly in response to what is being planned as a peaceful protest?”

Occupy NATO on May 18th to 22nd — Free Bus Trips

A flyer for this is provided here.

With the NATO conference coming up in Chicago — the G8 conference was scared into moving their conference to Camp David — Occupy and affiliated movements are kicking into full gear, planning protests and more. Their grievances? Out of control military spending (nearly 700 billion per year), civilian deaths in unaccountable drone strikes, the military industrial complex and war in general. They will hold a “People’s Summit” to counter the G8 and NATO summits.

A group calling itself 99% Solidarity is planning to bus protesters to Chicago to join in on the action. The buses will leave on the 14th or 15th. From the website:

Currently, buses will be leaving from the following cities in time to arrive in Chicago on May 17.
New York City
Washington DC
Boston, MA
Providence, RI
Burlington, VT
Salem, NH
Philadelphia, PA
Atlanta, GA
Oakland CA
Los Angeles, CA
San Francisco, CA
Continue reading Occupy NATO on May 18th to 22nd — Free Bus Trips

Occupy Roundup: Feb 18-20 – General Edition

  • Families and teachers are protesting the shutdown and takeover of a Chicago school marked for “turnaround”, holding a sit-in to protest the push. Good luck to them in dealing with the Chicago Public School board and Rahm Emanuel.
  • The OWS Sustainability Group is pushing for rooftop farming as a way to introduce healthy, fresh foods to local schools and restaurants, as well as helping to reskill workers. (Ed. note: as a bit of an architecture geek I’m interested to see how they set this up; if they can confirm structural stability under the added load, this would help push eco-friendly construction one step further, I think.)
  • Finally, the NYCLU is filing an amicus brief against the unlawful removal of protesters from Zuccotti Park, bringing this fight securely into the legal realm as much as it is in all other realms.
  • Mic Check! Rahm Emanuel speech shut down by Occupy Chicago

    Today,  Chicago Mayor and former White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel found himself the target of yet another mic check, courtesy of protesters from Occupy Chicago.  Watch his reaction in the video below, courtesy NBC Chicago, as he  appears to shorten his speech and hurry away. With two mic checks of  Democrats in one day, the Occupy movement is more effectively demonstrating itself to be  nonpartisan. Source: Huffpo