Sunday, October 30, 2011

Angela Davis at Occupy Philly

"We talked about the importance of building a movement that is inclusive, but recognising that the unity of the 99% must be a complex unity.  Movements in the past have primarily appealed to specific communities.  Whether workers, students, black communities, Latino communities, women, LGBT communities, indigenous people, or these movements have been organised around specific issues.  Like the environment, food, water, war, the prison-industrial complex.  Speaking of the prison-industrial complex.  This is the movement I have been personally associated with.  We have tried to call attention to the inoperable damage prison and the prison-industrial system has inflicted on our community.  So we have called for a reduction of the prison population.  Decarceration - decarcerate Pennsylvania.  And we have called for the eventual abolition of prisons as the dominant mode of punishment.  But we have also called for the revitalisation of all our communities.  We have called for education, health care, housing, jobs, hope, justice, creativity, equality, freedom!  We move from the particular to the general.  We have come together as the 99%.  There are major responsibilities linked to your decision to assemble here in communities.  How can you be together?  I evoke once more Audre Lorde.  Differences must not be merely tolerated but seen as a fund of polarities between which our creativity can spark like a dialectic.  Finally, let me say a few words about my home town, Oakland, California.  You have heard about the police assault.  Scott Olsen remains in the hospital.  Oakland General Assembly met in the renamed park Oscar Grant Park and responded by calling for a general strike on November 2nd.  Many unions have already supported the call.  I end by sharing the language of the poster: decolonise Oakland.  We are the 99%.  We stand united.  November 2nd, 2011, general strike, no work, no school, occupy everywhere.  Occupy everywhere."