October 10, 2011.
We chose indigenous peoples day to start occupy Oakland/decolonize oakland cuz it only seemed appropriate to free the land on this day, connect the dots and have our ohlone brothers and sisters start the day.
Oakland had been waiting. we were watching it coming. some folks said thats some white shit. and they were right. some people said thats some middle class shit. they were right. some people said lets make it our shit. and thats what we did. and over the next several months the entire nation talked about shit you never heard of in the news. words like “racism”, “classism”, “capitalism” were being said on the news, radio, tv, social media. the violence, corruption, lack of a moral compass of the United States was revealed to more people. the illusion was being seen for what it was. Cairo and Oakland stood as one. Palestine and Oakland stood as one. and occupy/decolonize spaces popped up around the country.
hundreds and hundreds of oaklanders came out in the rain 8 years ago today (it hasn’t rained for a few Octobers now). Occupy/decolonize oakland was in effect. The take over was seamless. Under the blanket of a rally those who took over city hall property got their tents up. There was free food for anyone who is hungry. People kept coming and spilling into the street. We had an open mic till the breaka breaka dawn. Everyday rallies/teach ins or open mic at noon, 330,530. Open mic 7pm every nite.
By the end of the week we had a full kitchen, a full media tent, a silk screening area, a Children’s Village, workshops and skill sharing throughout the day, and several committees for people to join.
Kahlid was still alive, documenting it all. Bam bam was still alive. I was the MC who kicked it off. Rich Ejire and @Ras Terms still lived in Oakland and were holding it down too. it was raining like a mo fo. Problematic gentrifuckers who should never been allowed to claim they were anarchists arrived in oakland to infiltrate our movement and housing. this is how i remember the day we started occupy/decolonize oakland.
(Contributed by Ayat Bryant-Jalal)