News / USA

Chicago Protesters Look for Permanent Home

Kane Farabaugh

Violence has flared up again in Oakland, California, where police and Occupy protesters have clashed. However, the protests around the country have been largely peaceful, including in the city of Chicago, where demonstrators are seeking a permanent home to stage their protest, a crucial step if the movement is to survive the harsh Midwestern winter.

Tear gas, flash grenades and chaos as Oakland police try to block Occupy protesters from moving down a street after violence erupted late Wednesday.

But in the middle of the country, the Occupy Chicago protest remains calm, even though its members cannot really "occupy" public areas.

They had hoped to use this space in Grant Park as their camp.

But police arrested them each time protesters tried to stay past the city's 11:00 p.m. curfew.

“The city is being fair," said Jordy Grant. "But I believe they could work with us a little more to find a permanent place to stay instead of on the corner here.”

Jordy Grant is an organizer with Occupy Chicago and says protesters hope the city will help them find a place to set up a camp.

Historian Erik Gellman of Roosevelt University says the protesters are mindful of the violence during the 1968 Democratic National Convention.  That incident, at the height of the Vietnam War, sparked outrage when Chicago Mayor Richard Daley ordered police to suppress demonstrations.

“Had Mayor Daley at the time responded by not sending police in to enforce that curfew, you might not have had the kind of police violence that resulted in August of 1968," said Gellman. "So I think that's a lesson that [Chicago Mayor Rahm] Emanuel can really learn from as far as tolerance for the Occupy movement."

Chicago officials declined to speak to VOA.  But in an e-mail, officials say they support the demonstrators' right to free speech and that they have assisted with crowd control and traffic during the daily protests.

Protester Grant says he understands the curfew, but adds that the demonstrations against perceived corporate greed have been peaceful here.

“If we want to be able to occupy, we should be able to," said Grant. "That’s our park. It’s not their park. It’s all of our park. And if not there, at least somewhere else.”

How the city deals with the Occupy protest might be an indication of how it will respond next year, when tens of thousands of demonstrators are expected to descend on Chicago when it hosts the G8 and NATO summits in May.

You May Like

UN Watchdog Urges Israel to Probe Possible Gaza War Crimes

More than 2,100 Palestinians, most of them civilians, were killed in a 51-day war in Gaza, along with 67 Israeli soldiers and six civilians in Israel More

New Kenyan 'Thin SIMs' Poised to Transform African Mobile Money

Equity's new technology is approved in African nation for one-year trial, though industry leader Safaricom says thin SIMs could lead to data theft and fraud More

Solar's Future Looks Brighter

New technology and dropping prices are contributing to a surge in solar power More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Talks to Resume on Winter Gas for Ukrainei
X
Al Pessin
October 25, 2014 4:21 PM
Ukrainian and Russian officials will meet again next week in an effort to settle their dispute over natural gas supplies that threatens to leave Ukraine short of heating fuel for the coming winter. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London the dispute is complex, and has both economic and geopolitical dimensions.
Video

Video Talks to Resume on Winter Gas for Ukraine

Ukrainian and Russian officials will meet again next week in an effort to settle their dispute over natural gas supplies that threatens to leave Ukraine short of heating fuel for the coming winter. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London the dispute is complex, and has both economic and geopolitical dimensions.
Video

Video Smugglers Offer Cheap Passage From Turkey to Syria

Smugglers in Turkey offer a relatively cheap passage across the border into Syria. Ankara has stepped up efforts to stem the flow of foreign fighters who want to join Islamic State militants fighting for control of the Syrian border city of Kobani. But porous borders and border guards who can be bribed make illegal border crossings quite easy. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video China Political Meeting Seeks to Improve Rule of Law

China’s communist leaders will host a top level political meeting this week, called the Fourth Plenum, and for the first time in the party’s history, rule of law will be a key item on the agenda. Analysts and Chinese media reports say the meetings could see the approval of long-awaited measures aimed at giving courts more independence and include steps to enhance an already aggressive and high-reaching anti-corruption drive. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
Video

Video After Decades of Pressure, Luxembourg Drops Bank Secrecy Rules

European Union finance ministers have reached a breakthrough agreement that will make it more difficult for tax cheats to hide their money. The new legislation, which had been blocked for years by countries with a reputation as tax havens, was approved last week after Luxembourg and Austria agreed to lift their vetoes. But as Mil Arcega reports, it doesn’t mean tax cheats have run out of places to keep their money hidden.
Video

Video Kobani Refugees Welcome, Turkey Criticizes, US Airdrop

Residents of Kobani in northern Syria have welcomed the airdrop of weapons, ammunition and medicine to Kurdish militia who are resisting the seizure of their city by Islamic State militants. The Turkish government, however, has criticized the operation. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from southeastern Turkey, across the border from Kobani.
Video

Video US ‘Death Cafes’ Put Focus on the Finale

In contemporary America, death usually is a topic to be avoided. But the growing “death café” movement encourages people to discuss their fears and desires about their final moments. VOA’s Jerome Socolovsky reports.
Video

Video Ebola Orphanage Opens in Sierra Leone

Sierra Leone's first Ebola orphanage has opened in the Kailahun district. Hundreds of children orphaned since the beginning of the Ebola outbreak face stigma and rejection with nobody to care for them. Adam Bailes reports for VOA about a new interim care center that's aimed at helping the growing number of children affected by Ebola.

All About America

AppleAndroid