Women march on DOJ, Hart Building against ICE detention, 600+ arrests in mass CD

On the 28th of June, a march of well over 1,000 mostly women marched past Trump Hotel and sat-in outside the “Dept of Injustice” without arrests. Afterwards they descended on Capitol Hill and backed up all entrances to the Dirksen and Hart buildings with the long search lines. Once inside, hundreds of women were arrested in a massive civil disobedience against family separation and detention on the border

As of 11PM EDT on June 28, 630 arrests were reported inside the Hart Building. This was according to a late-night update posted to Twitter. The Washington Post gave a figure of 575, which matches earlier accounts. Unknown if the Post went to press prior to a final update, or if the Post figure is correct. The civil disobedience was entirely by women. Speaking of gender, a number of signs in the march asked why no photos that have emerged from the detention centers ever show women and girls. This is considered more than suspicious. A demand heard throughout the day was “abolish ICE” meaning marchers understand that it is not enough to stop family separation, as evil as recent practices have been. All immigration detention has to go without exception, and migration is considered a human right not requiring permission from nation-states and their wealthy backers. ICE, Trump’s wall, the border itself-all of it has to go.

Video of the march and civil disobedience 4 min 8 sec

The march to Capitol Hill began with a public shaming of Trump Hotel

The street sit-in at the Dept of Injustice was also a civil disobedience, but as at ICE and FERC earlier in the week, cops declined to make arrests.

The scene inside the Hart Building (Still from Alejandro Alvarez video)

The women participating in the civil disobedience wore the same “space blankets” given by ICE to children separated from their parents (Still from Alejandro Alvarez video)

Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment

Movimiento Cocecha and allies shut down ICE’s DC headquarters

On the 27th of June, Movimiento Cocecha backed by many allies showed up in front of ICE’s DC headquarters on 12th st SW across from the FCC. ICE had barricaded their front doors-and told their employees to stay home for the day. Photos shot through side windows verified at least the first floor windows to be empty. Prevented from entering ICE’s building, protesters blocked 12th st as well.

While police had barricades set up to protect the front door, they had not barricaded the entire building. Seeing this, protesters flanked the barricades with a march around the building not on the streets but on sidewalks and concrete right up against the walls and windows. It was at this point that camera footage was shot showing the inside of the first floor to be empty.

At the end of the protest, everyone was able to safely withdraw without arrests. A small crew of 3 or maybe 4 fascists connected to the Daily Caller and possibly the “Proud Boys” racist militia as well tried and failed to disrupt the protest. They were quickly recognized and contained by anti-Fascist activists. Speaking of Fascism, several protesters held signs invoking WWII and Naziism as precedents for the current behavior the Trump regime and its racist backers.

Police may well have left protesters alone to avoid adding fuel to the firestorm of public rage and fury summoned up by the screams of toddlers ripped from their parents’ arms on the border on the direct order of Donald Trump and his minions. Trump regime officials have admitted they were caging children away from their parents for no more reason than to attempt to deter other migrants. This is totally beyond the pale, and the Washington Post now reports ICE and Homeland Security officials cowering from the public. They have been confronted in and ordered to leave restaurants, and faced protesters at their homes. In Portland protesters beseiged an ICE office for a week. Here in DC, ICE chose not to face the fury of the public, instead forfeiting by staying home and ensuring protesters achieved their stated goal of shutting down ICE’s DC office for the day.

Video-shutting down ICE for the day 2 min 45 sec

Raining buckets at the start of the protest

Blocking 12th st in front of ICE

Start of the street blockade

Hitler, Tojo, Trump

First floor of ICE verified empty by camera footage through windows

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Beyond Extreme Energy blockades FERC, 1st st NE

On the 25th of June, Beyond Extreme Energy blocked half of 1st st NE, enough to block access to to FERC’s driveway. The blockade consisted of a pair of mock oil rgs with activists sitting inside. The blockade held firm for about 5 hours before the rig sitters climbed down and departed in victory without arrests.

The “drilling rigs” arrived just after 7AM and were quickly set up to block the side of First St NE controlling access to FERC’s driveway before anyone could intervene. For the next five hours, police made no move to attempt to arrest the drill rig sitters or otherwise remove the blockade. In addition, the crowds of FERC employees usually seen during this sort of blockade never showed up. There are only two ways this is possible: either they were told to show up prior to 7AM or they were told to stay home. The latter has happened in the past, and at 7AM there was no sign of police or barricades at FERC. Thus, it appears that Beyond Extreme Energy may have succeeded in shutting down FERC’s rubber stamp machine for the day.

Those FERC employees who did show up were told by police to use commercial paid parking lots, a strong incentive to stay home or go home for the day. One nearby parking lot offered a pre-7AM “early bird special” for $12.50 for the day, there are a lot of downtown parking lots charging in the $24 range to park a car for the day. FERC’s oil and gas barons do not bike, and there was no stream of them arriving from Union Station either.

FERC or the Federal Energy Regulatory Agency has long been infamous as the oil and fracked gas industry’s rubber stamp, approving all but a tiny fraction of projects. Now however, cracks are appearing as the two remaining Democratic commissioners are starting to dissent against pro-industry decisions by the three new GOP commissioners installed by Trump. Thus, the campaign is called “Crack FERC Open.”

During the noon rally Rev Yearwood pointed out that FERC is not “PERC” or the Private(or pipeline) Energy Regulator Commission but instead “Federal” and thus supposed to answer to the people and not to the oil and gas industry whose executives and officials so often find jobs at FERC and vice versa.

Video overview of the five-hour blockade of FERC 3 min 16 sec

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Capitol Police block Poor Peoples’s March from US Capitol grounds

On the 23ed of June, the Poor People’s Campaign held a rally and march on the US Capitol at the endpoint of their initial 40 days of action. The US Capitol Police blocked the march from approaching the Capitol West Lawn, using police lines and protest pen fence to divert marchers. This was not expected by many marchers and could have created a dangerous crowd crush scenario.

When marchers reached the police line, even the sidewalk to the south was blocked by cops. There was word cops wanted marchers to back up-back into the still incoming and quite large mass of the rest of the march. Instead, the lead elements managed to flank the police line and go north, but were still blocked by pen fences and more cops from getting any closer to the US Capitol. Marchers at that point returned to the streets, eventually marching back to the 7th st/ Mall stage area. The US Capitol Police acted like they expected another blockade, but very little business is conducted on Saturdays at the US Capitol. Business is probably the operative word, as votes are sold for corporate campaign cash.

Some of the marchers complained of a near-complete media blackout of the 40 day long Poor People’s Campaign’s initial mobilization. In the DC area, the author of this report saw only two reports on paid media. The first was a FOX News report on the cockroaches in Central Cell Block after Rev Hagler and others were arrested and held overnight for praying at the Supreme Court. The preachers held a press conference and focussed on the roaches because so many people get held in Central Cell Block. The other report was on June 23 itself in the Washington Post on the June 23 rally and march-too late to influence anyone going to an event that would probably start by the time they started reading the paper.

Video of the march and the police lines/pens that hemmed it in 2min 42 sec

Marching on Independence Ave en route to the Capitol

The police line blocking the entire march in a manner equivalent to suddenly shutting a valve in a water pipe

The crowd trapped by the police lines, construction, and other obstacles

The lead of the march between a pair of pen fences after flanking the intial police line

The truth about Donald Trump

Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment

DHS Sec Kirstjen Nielson gets audio of detained kids played outside her house

On June 22, Homeland Security secretarty Kirstjen Nielson got an early morning surprise at her Aleandria townhouse. Before she could leave for work, protesters showed up playing audio of the children she helped to separate from their parents.

Protesters chanted “No Justice, no sleep! and “Free the kids!” When Kirstjen finally left for work she had to pass protesters chanting “SHAME!”

There is also a report on Twitter that Kirstjen Nielson has told GOP Congressmen that there are plans to start separating families again one the uproar quits down. This sort of thing will guarantee she will be targetted by protesters again and again. This does not stop at the office, as the world saw twice in the past week. At work, eating at a Mexican restaurant, at home and at all hours of the day and night, monsters like this are facing crowds made furious by these attacks on innocent children. NO SLEEP FOR THE WICKED!

Meanwhile estimates are about 2,300 children separated from their parents. WTOP News reports many have been “lost” and cannot be found by the US government to reconnect to their parents.

Video by Philip Lewis including the audio of the children Kirstjen has helped detain.

Photo by Philip Louis

Still from Philip Louis video

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

DC Democratic Socialists of America disrupt DHS Secretary’s dinner at Mexican restaurant

On the 19th of June, Dept of Homeland Security secretary Kirstjen Nielsen thought dinner at a Mexican restaurant came with impunity from being called to account for separating children from their parents at the border. The Metro DC Democratic Socialists of America had other ideas, showing up inside MXDC to protest.

Here is Metro-DC DSA’s statement on the protest:

“We will not stand by and let Secretary Nielsen dine in peace, while she is directing her employees to tear little girls away from their mothers and crying boys away from their fathers at our border,” said Margaret McLaughlin, a member of the Metro DC Democratic Socialists of America Steering Committee. “Secretary Nielsen and everyone else who has carried out these brutal and cold-blooded orders to rip apart families should never be allowed to eat and drink in public again. These barbarous acts must end and those at the helm must be held accountable. While Secretary Nielsen’s dinner may have been ruined, it is nothing compared to the horrors she has inflicted on innocent families.”

Better quality video-80% of the original FB footage plus Kirstjen Nielsen fleeing to her car 8min 58 sec, original resolution, much better sound

Video cut from Metro DC DSA’s live video

Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment

Poor People’s Campaign launches coordinated blockades at multiple targets

On the 18th of June, the Poor People’s Campaign abandoned Capitol Hill protests. Instead, they marched from a big tent on the Mall and broke into three sections. The march sections went to EPA, HUD, and HHS. The EPA and HUD got blockades, while HHS has barricaded protesters out. A “People’s HHS” was erected at that location. In all cases cops declined to make arrests, so protesters escalated to street blockades and a final blockade at the Dept of Injustice.

HHS is Health and Human Services, EPA is the Environmental Protection Agency, and HUD is Housing and Human Services. All have Trump flunkies in charge. At both HHS and HUD one of the issues is Trump’s effort to raise rent by 20% for everyone who gets Federal housing assistance. At the EPA safe water was a major issue. Water is indeed life, and the Trump regime is not afraid to poison water from Flint, MI to Standing Rock, ND if there is money to be made by doing so.

The previous week, Reverend Hagler and several other preachers were arrested for praying on the steps of the Supreme Court and held overnight. Upon release they spoke to the press, leading to a story on of all places FOX News about the cockroach infestation at Central Cell Block. For some reason the matching bedbug infestation went unmentioned. Unknown if that was FOX News pulling punches or the Poor People’s Campaign saving the bedbug complaints for Round II. In any event, it was cheaper for police to submit to the doorway and rush hour traffic blockades than it would be to deal with the roaches and the bedbugs at Central Cell Block.

The street blockades were set when cops did not arrest blockaders at HUD and apparently not at EPA either though that is not directly confirmed. Marchers leaving HUD blockaded 7th st at the SE-SW Freeway, then moved to Independence Ave and linked up with protesters marching back from HHS. Finally all protesters came together in a march to the Dept of “Justice,” home of Jeff Session. Attorney General Jeff Sessions is so blatantly racist that his confirmation for a seat on the Federal bench failed during the 1980’s, on the grounds that he was too racist for Senate Republicans. Now this known KKK sympathiser is the man behind the “zero-tolerance” campaign of charging all migrants caught at the US-Mexico border and separating them from their children. Sessions was challenged to come out to speak to protesters but did not appear. Again police declined to make arrests, and eventually everyone marched back to their starting point.

When asked about who was driving in traffic “in-car-cerated” behind the blockades, someone at the protest said that almost all the drivers on Penn Ave were wealthy, upscale drivers. When asked about service workers in those hugely expensive buildings they replied that all the service workers ride Metro. No Metrobuses were seen stopped at any of the blockades. It makes sense that the bulk of the traffic in afternoon rush hour in that part of town would be made up of those who can afford to spend $20-$25 a day to park their cars. Anyone who can afford to spend $25 a day to park their BMW can afford to wait behind a protest and get some education about those who are less well-off in the process!

Video including all of the blockades and targets (5min 33 sec)

The Poor People’s Campaign blockade at the EPA

Blockade at HUD

Building the “People’s HHS”

Street blockade at 7th st and the SE-SW Freeway. The highway below is used by many Congressmen to get to and from the Capitol

The combined march on Penn Ave

The final blockade on Penn Ave in front of the Dept of “Justice”

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment