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People’s Park 50th Anniversary

Indybay RSS - April 12, 2019 - 9:52pm
People’s Park has been the site of continual struggle for decades. Students and demonstrators took over the park from UC Berkeley in 1969 as a staging ground for activism and protests. In the following decades, the university has tried again on numerous occasions to develop the park, but People’s Park continues to be a rallying point for community activists. In honor of the People’s resistance, two weeks of events with music, tree planting, spoken word, and activist speakers will celebrate the 50th Anniversary of People's Park. A free concert kicks off the celebration on Saturday, April 13 at noon.

Trump Admin Plans New Oil Drilling in Bay Area, Along Central Coast

Indybay RSS - April 1, 2019 - 3:17pm
The Center for Biological Diversity is suing the Bureau of Land Management over its refusal to provide public records of its plans new oil drilling and fracking along California’s Central Coast and in the Bay Area. The BLM has yet to publicly release the final plans, but earmarked for leasing are lands in Alameda, Contra Costa, Fresno, Merced, Monterey, San Benito, San Joaquin, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Santa Cruz and Stanislaus counties. The Trump administration’s plans would end a six-year moratorium on leasing federal public land and mineral estate in California to oil companies.

Use of Word 'Dindunuffin' by Police Officer Triggers Investigation

Indybay RSS - April 1, 2019 - 3:12pm
The Santa Cruz Police Department has opened an internal affairs investigation into the conduct of Officer Chris Galli, who in January referred to a man he had previously arrested as a "dindunuffin" on social media. Galli, posting as "Chris Meriekuh", made the comment about the individual, who is African American and homeless. A screen capture of the comment was posted in an Indybay article, helping to raise awareness concerning the racist nature of the term, which originated among law enforcement officers to mock activists participating in the Black Lives Matter Movement during its initial rise in 2014 and 2015.

What the Boycott of Manny’s in San Francisco's Mission Is All About

Indybay RSS - March 31, 2019 - 11:58pm
Margot Goldstein and Rachel Lederman write: Our community institutions should create venues for genuine discussions about how to confront oppression. Manny’s does not accomplish the goal of “civic discourse” on social justice because it contributes to racist gentrification and supports the Israeli occupation of Palestine. The boycott of Manny’s is the community standing up to Yekutiel’s opportunistic attempt to exploit social justice for profit while perpetuating and supporting the destructive politics of gentrification and Zionism.

Governor Newsom Suspends Death Penalty in California

Indybay RSS - March 31, 2019 - 11:58pm
Governor Gavin Newsom signed an order on March 13 putting a moratorium on California's death penalty, thus ordering a reprieve for the 737 people on death row. The action suspends any further executions in California as long as Newsom is governor. But only California voters can repeal the death penalty, which they narrowly rejected at the ballot in 2016. Newsom also ordered the immediate closure of the state's execution chamber at San Quentin State Prison. The order does not otherwise change any existing convictions or sentences — and will not lead to any death row inmates being released.

Chelsea Manning Takes Another Brave Stand

Indybay RSS - March 16, 2019 - 8:30pm
U.S. Army whistleblower Chelsea Manning has been sent back to jail after refusing to answer questions before a grand jury investigating WikiLeaks and its founder, Julian Assange. Manning had been subpoenaed by federal prosecutors in Virginia’s Eastern District to appear for questioning about her 2010 leak to WikiLeaks of hundreds of thousands of State Department and Pentagon documents about the U.S. wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Manning was imprisoned from 2010 to 2017 for the leak. President Obama commuted her sentence before he left office.

Community Opposes Tar Sands Expansion in Rodeo

Indybay RSS - March 15, 2019 - 10:55pm
A coalition of local and community groups hosted a town hall in the East Bay town of Rodeo on March 7, drawing over 150 people to discuss the risks of a proposal by Phillips 66’s San Francisco Refinery in Rodeo to bring in more oil tankers and process more heavy crude oil like tar sands. The tar sands expansion proposal would impact local health and the climate by increasing refinery emissions and worsening air quality for nearby communities while also increasing tanker traffic and the risk of a devastating oil spill in the San Francisco Bay Area.

San Francisco Bay Area Says Hands Off Venezuela

Indybay RSS - March 14, 2019 - 10:58pm
Venezuela has been in the crosshairs of the U.S. since 1999 when Hugo Chávez began implementing socialist reforms. Upon Chávez's death in 2013, Nicolás Maduro was elected President. Maduro's second inauguration was on January 10, 2019. On January 22, U.S. Vice President Pence offered Juan Guaidó the presidency of Venezuela and Guaidó then appointed himself "Interim President." Trump recognized the self-appointment, in effect instigating a coup against the Bolivarian government. Protests and marches have been held in the Bay Area to demand the U.S. take its "Hands Off Venezuela." On March 16, thousands marched in D.C.

34-Mile March to Expose "Oily" Wells Fargo

Indybay RSS - March 13, 2019 - 3:05am
350 Silicon Valley says Wells Fargo Bank has a dirty-energy secret: the commercial bank is the biggest lender to the fossil-fuel industry. Climate activists are targeting the nation's fourth largest bank for protest, just in time to crash its annual founding day celebration. Starting in Palo Alto on March 16, demonstrators will walk in the March for Fossil Fuel Freedom up the peninsula forming a human billboard to demand Wells Fargo change its ways. They will arrive at 420 Montgomery Ave., the bank's headquarters, at noon on March 18 for a grand finale rally in front of Wells Fargo headquarters in San Francisco.

City of Santa Cruz to Move Forward on Transitional Homeless Encampments

Indybay RSS - March 11, 2019 - 11:17pm
On Tuesday, March 12 at 7pm, the Santa Cruz City Council will decide how to proceed on the establishment of transitional homeless encampments and safe parking locations within the city. Despite the giant presence of anti-homeless community members at the previous meeting on February 26, council members voted to remove the closure date of the Heroes Camp, a large homeless encampment between Highway 1 and Gateway Plaza, until more shelter options are made available to its residents.

New Hate Blog in Santa Cruz is Gaining Followers

Indybay RSS - March 11, 2019 - 11:09pm
The new hate blog "Santa Cruz, CA: Keepin' It Real" has gradually been gaining followers since its founding in 2017. It is written under the pen name "Big Joe 77" by Joe Netro, a self-described "cop" who is retired from working 26 years as a correctional officer at Soledad state prison. He also volunteers with the Santa Cruz Police Department, and he served as a member of the 2016-17 Santa Cruz County Grand Jury which issued a controversial, and some say biased, report critical of the county's Syringe Services Program. Recently, Netro has joined Take Back Santa Cruz member Steve Schlicht's "Santa Mierda Podcast Network," appearing on multiple podcasts.

Banner Drop at UC Santa Cruz Calls for Divestment and Ending Study Abroad in Israel

Indybay RSS - March 11, 2019 - 11:05pm
On March 7, a group of people dropped a banner in Quarry Plaza at the University of California, Santa Cruz that read "UC must divest/End Study Abroad in 'Israel' Now." UC Santa Cruz Students for Justice in Palestine writes: We have grave concerns that the UC's study abroad programs in Israel are opposed to the values of academic freedom and are complicit in the oppression of Palestinians. Israeli study abroad programs have a demonstrated track record of being racist against non-white students.

Rest in Peace Sherry Conable

Indybay RSS - March 11, 2019 - 11:00pm
In shocking news to the Santa Cruz activist community, Sherry Conable passed away on February 4. Sherry participated in and organized countless political demonstrations and anti-war events over the course of decades in the Santa Cruz area. On March 8, a celebration of Sherry's life was held at Peace United Church, where family and friends wore the color pink to honor Sherry's work with CodePink.

San Mateo DA Decision to Not Prosecute for Taser Death Protested

Indybay RSS - March 4, 2019 - 2:46am
The District Attorney of San Mateo County announced on March 1 that he found four deputy sheriffs and a sheriff’s sergeant did not violate the California penal code when they killed Chinedu Okobi with tasers on October 13, 2018. This is despite the fact that the coroner classified the death as a homicide. Civil-rights attorney John Burris, who represents the Okobi family, said that law enforcement actions needlessly escalated after their loved one committed only a minor infraction.

Save the Redstone Building!

Indybay RSS - February 26, 2019 - 10:45pm
For more than a century, the Redstone Labor Temple has served as a hub for labor, social service, and non-profit community groups in San Francisco. The owner of the building wants to sell and is asking for $25 million. At the price the owner wants, all of the leases would rise dramatically and existing tenants would, in all likelihood, be displaced. On 6pm, Wednesday, February 27, organizers are holding a rally and community event to honor 104 years of economic and social justice at the Redstone and to work for a community solution.

Japanese Americans, Allies Say “Never Again is Now”

Indybay RSS - February 25, 2019 - 2:44pm
On February 17, members of the greater San José Japanese American community commemorated the anniversary of Executive Order 9066, which led to the incarceration of 120,000 Americans of Japanese descent during World War II. At the same time they protested the National Emergency Trump announced two days earlier in order to build his wall on the Mexico-U.S. border. Allies from the South Bay peace activist community joined with those gathered in the local Japantown, one of only three left in the United States.

Years of Work to Demilitarize Urban Shield on the Line

Indybay RSS - February 24, 2019 - 9:09pm
An Alameda County task force recommended Urban Shield be transformed from a highly militarized SWAT competition and weapons expo into a community-focused safety exercise. The Sheriff's Office and other law enforcement agencies are expected to push back hard when the recommendations come to a vote on Tuesday, February 26. Urban Shield opponents say a large "Stop Urban Shield" presence at the meeting is important, but that you can also reach out to Supervisors and tell them not to buckle to the pressure.

Oakland Teachers Strike

Indybay RSS - February 20, 2019 - 9:32pm
Oakland teachers are the lowest paid teachers in Alameda County. Students are under-resourced with only one academic counselor per 600 students and 21 nurses for all 37,000 students. Oakland teachers are demanding smaller class sizes, more student support, a moratorium on charters, no more school closures, and a living wage. To fight for those goals, teachers go on strike city-wide on Thursday, February 21. There will be picket lines at all 86 school sites, 20 of which are considered priority. Teachers and allies request folks to join them at all times of day, with city-wide rallies at 11:30am.

Costco Egg Supplier Seeks to Bankrupt Animal Investigators

Indybay RSS - February 19, 2019 - 11:00pm
On January 31, dozens of activists with the animal rights network Direct Action Everywhere (DxE) put up “Caution” and “Danger” tape across the San Francisco Costco meat department in a protest of alleged animal cruelty and biohazard risk inside Costco farms. The activists were also protesting the criminal prosecution of two activists who exposed animal cruelty at Costco egg supplier Pleasant Valley Farms in 2016 and now face a massive restitution penalty. One of those activists, Paul Picklesimer, said, “If Costco truly cared about animals, they would thank us for exposing cruelty at one of their suppliers.”

Irish Bill Banning Israeli Settlement Goods Passes

Indybay RSS - February 18, 2019 - 6:28pm
The lower house of the Irish parliament passed a bill preventing the importation or sale of goods from Israeli settlements on January 24. The law would "make it an offence for a person to import or sell goods or services originating in an occupied territory or to extract resources from an occupied territory in certain circumstances." Conversely, the U.S. Senate passed a bill on February 5 which included the "Combating BDS Act of 2019" that would allow state and local governments to sanction those who support the Boycott, Divest and Sanctions movement.

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